To state that Excel works in a "similar way" to Word can't be farther from reality.
What could you possibly mean by that?"
By that I mean that you still have the options to apply font changes, editing features, even spell-checking, which, to my mind, pretty much covers the basics of what Word does, but it also gives the addition of sheets, which is what the OP wants.
As I said, I have seen Excel used by people as a word processor, I never bothered asking why they did so, they had their reasons, much like the OP.
And back to the OP, I take it that you have tried inserting an Excel worksheet into Word? (unfortunately there isn't an option to insert a workbook), or inserting a Word document into Excel?
"I've always been mad, I know I've been mad, like the most of us..." Pink Floyd