We owe it to each other to tell stories - Neil Gaiman

Tuesday, 22 November 2011

Re-reading books

C.S. Lewis once said that he could not imagine someone really enjoying a book and only reading it once. Truer words have never been spoken - but rereading so often falls by the wayside - what with all these new books that are coming out everyday and with all the new books that you discover everyday. It is not difficult to understand why books that we enjoyed and have shelved as wanting to be reread just wait there, longing to be picked up again, wishing that you would pick it up and enter the worlds that exist in between all of those pages.

To read or to reread that is the question - as a book blogger you are always wondering what to do when it comes to reading a book that you have reviewed before. I reread the Southern Vampire Mystery Series earlier this year, and then last weekend I read two Sookie short stories and just longed to be sucked back into Bon Temps and interact with all the supes that find themselves there. But this is not the only series I long for - I want to reread Harry Potter. I want to go back to Hogwarts and re-live the wonder of Hagrid's odd collection of pets, feel the tension of Harry's first quidditch game, the genius of Fred and George's departure from Hogwarts, the Ministry of Magic ... I miss that world - and whilst I could just hire all the DVDs, it would just not be the same.

And then there is that eternally rainy place called Forks where the gorgeous Cullen's live, the epic love story of Edward and Bella. And don't get me started on The Vampire Diaries - the oh so lovely devil that is Damon Salvatore... And then there is Starcrossed that was on my mind forever after I finished it, and Gone with the Wind, Rebecca, Middlesex, I am Ozzy, Shutter Island, The Unbearable Lightness of Being, One Hundred Years of Solitude.... My list could continue forever.

This is when one must decide to create some sort of balance between discovering new worlds and people and revisiting the ones we have already encountered. And well that is what I am going to do. As soon as I have thought of an awesome name I shall start a feature for rereads, because well a life without re-reads is not a life that I want.


  1. I don't know why people re-read books, because there are many options available. Even if a person would never sleep, just read there won't be enough time in a life to read all the books in this world.

    I want to read as many as I can and now that I find a great offer on all you can books I will download some for this year and the next one:) They have a 15 days trial and people can download all the books they want during this trial.

  2. I don't re-read often, but I think it's a must. When it comes to favourites, re-reading them is one of life's little pleasures, revisiting worlds, stories and characters you love. Then there are some books (like the Unbearable Lightness of Being :) that are just too complex and subtle for you to appreciate the first time around. Only with a few re-reads do you come to appreciate the brilliance of the author's work, and all the lovely nuances in the writing.

    Lately I find it hard to get around to re-reading though. Review books take up a lot of my time, and thanks to a book-buying addiction I've got a tall tbr pile begging for my attention. I can understand that some people don't re-read because there are so many new books out there that they want to experience, but the way I see it I'll never live long enough to read anything I want to anyway, and since reading is about pleasure it's sometimes better to curl up with an old favourite than to crack the spine of a latest release that might be a dud.

  3. There is something very comforting about re-reading a favourite book or series. I try to revisit some of mine at least once every two years, but review books (and a terminal book-buying addiction) keep me pretty busy discovering new favourites.

    You've stirred a longing in me to stop what I'm doing and prowl through my bookshelf for an old book friend. :)

    The Word Fiend

  4. Rereading is something that allows us to revisit old friends and it also shows us how we have grown and changed since our last read. I also think that rereading helps us to deal with many of the things that the characters are going through. Not rereading would make life very dull, and I cannot imagine living without rereading. The only problem is that sadly there will never be enough time to read them all.


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