My most fond memory of reading happened way back in either grade 4, 5, or 6 -- I can't remember. I was introduced to the world of Narnia by a teacher who obviously felt it was important to read and explore books, because I have no other recollection of such an experience.
The story The Magician's Nephew, by C.S. Lewis, still echoes in my ears as if it had been read to me yesterday. Having re-read the story several times since then, it somehow pales in comparison to having it read aloud.
Why? The story hasn't changed. The characters are all the same. It's the same length and the same author. But with the obvious addition of sound now accompanying the words, a whole different experience takes place.
When you read, not only is your brain forming a picture in your mind's eye of what's happening, but you're also concentrating on the act of reading itself. And for those of us who have always found the act of reading - dare I say - tiresome (ahem), sometimes our focus shifts in and out from actually reading the words, to letting our imagination have free reign within the tale being told.
When my teacher was reading the book to us, all my senses where left to freely enjoy the story and let my imagination run wild. Maybe it's because I've always been an audiophile -- I don't know, but when I don't have to concentrate on anything other than simply listening to a story, I tend to enjoy the whole story experience a lot more.
Plus, it didn't hurt that my teacher had a wonderful reading voice. Maybe that's my problem: I can't stand my inner voice. It's terrible dull, come to think of it. I wonder what my wife would say if I asked her to read my books to me from now on...