If you are a re-reader

(75 Posts)
Parisbanana Tue 03-Sep-13 19:16:14

Can u ask why? What makes you return to the same book over again, possibly several times? And what are those books?

Just interested as I will watch certain films repeatedly but have only ever reread one book. I do read avidly though not particularly quickly so think life is too short to reread.

NuggetofPurestGreen Sun 08-Sep-13 12:58:59

hackmum and highland I feel like that and I'm 33. But still can't stop rereading. I love it so much, although I love a really good new book too. Maybe will make a rule, only allowed one reread for every 5 new books grin

tumbletumble Sun 08-Sep-13 16:43:31

I am normally a re-reader for the reasons already mentioned (comforting, easy, relaxing). Especially Jane Austen, Nancy Mitford, Bill Bryson, Joanna Trollope, Penelope Lively, I Capture the Castle, The L Shaped Room.

However, this year I am doing the 50 book challenge (see thread in this section!) and I'm not including any re-reads as that would feel a bit like cheating. I must admit, it has been interesting forcing myself to read new different books. I guess re-reading too much can make you a bit lazy!

itsallshitandmoreshit Sun 08-Sep-13 18:21:12

I'm an avid reader (about 3 books a week all my adult life) and I've only ever reread a book once. We need to talk about Kevin. I just had to read that again.

I would feel like it was a waste if I reread books rather than reading new ones. A bit like going to the same place each year on holiday (like my ILs!) Why would you, just why with the whole world to explore? I'm the same with TV and film, never really watch the same thing twice.

itsallshitandmoreshit Sun 08-Sep-13 18:23:49

To be honest I didn't even know rereading was a 'thing' till I joined MN. I didn't know anyone did that. I don't know anyone who does it.
MN always an education smile

Takver Sun 08-Sep-13 18:51:19

"Why would you, just why with the whole world to explore? "

Because you may get more out of a book the second time you read it? I would say that I take very different things away from, just for example, Mrs Gaskell's novels reading them at 43 compared to 18.

NuggetofPurestGreen Sun 08-Sep-13 18:52:43

Because if you really enjoy something why wouldn't you want to experience it again?? I wouldn't go to the same place on holiday every single year just as I don't just reread one book over and over but I would go somewhere more than once if I liked it eg have been to London a few times and Edinburgh twice and have done different things each time.

And I watch films and tv shows multiple times too smile

ozymandiusking Sun 08-Sep-13 18:57:02

Katherine by Anya Seaton
Jane Eyre
The Winthrop Women By Anya Seaton

Bumply Sun 08-Sep-13 19:06:51

My memory works in a strange way. It's easier to remember what I was doing the first time I read a book rather than the exact plot. I read a lot of series books and particularly when I'm waiting for the author to write the next one I'll re-read some of the others to remember where I first met a character, how they got where they are. Others have special moments which with an rebook are easy to search for and having re-experienced that moment I often get the urge to start again from the beginning.

UptoapointLordCopper Sun 08-Sep-13 19:12:24

I re-read most of my books. Those I don't reread end up in the charity shop.

HometownUnicorn Sun 08-Sep-13 19:17:43

i re-read a lot. For a sense of comfort, to achieve a very particular sense of place and time, to get more from a book, and to enjoy the beautiful words of the best writers just washing around me.

I sort of assumed everyone did - why would you hang on to books you've read if not to re-read them?

Greydog Sun 08-Sep-13 19:26:04

I re read most of my books, but my favourite rereads are The Godfather, Mist over Pendle, nearly any Agatha Christie or Georgette Heyer. Miss Read books are great for reading in bed at night, nothing too taxing, and if I'm really down the chapter "Christmas Boxes" in What Katie did at School" cheers me up.

Clary Sun 08-Sep-13 21:57:45

I go on holiday to the same place every year too blush

tbh we can't really splash out on anywhere exotic, so we are limited to the UK, and we have tried other places in this country and after about a day we are all saying "hmm, but it's not as nice as xxxx, is it?"

I watch films again and again too. I've seen Casablanca at least a dozen times.

This doesn't make me Eeyore btw; I am very open to change and in fact 3 years ago totally changed career in a way that meant taking a very big risk/step into the unknown. I am not dull, honest!! grin

Greydog I love Christmas boxes in that book, where they find Debbie's jumbles and all the things everyone has made for them!

exoticfruits Sun 08-Sep-13 22:15:40

Rebecca is on of mine too.
It is a comfort thing. Georgette Heyer is definitely one. Jane Austin, especially Pride and Prejudice, and Jane Eyre.

Kasterborous England Sun 08-Sep-13 22:39:32

A comfort thing and if I'm having a bit of trouble concentrating on a book re reads are easier as I don't need to concentrate as much.

Greydog Mon 09-Sep-13 13:01:20

Clary to this day I've wanted to try one of Debbies jumbles! I ought to look for the recipe!

Greydog Mon 09-Sep-13 13:24:41
hackmum Mon 09-Sep-13 20:04:46

highlandcoo: "What age do you reckon this awful realisation dawns?"

Well, for me, it was early 40s, I think, though it's hard now to remember! But this thread has made me feel perhaps I should go back and reread stuff I used to love, both the old favourites (David Lodge, Nick Hornby etc) and things that I only read once, a long time ago but which made a big impression on me at the time. For example, in my 20s I read almost everything by Milan Kundera, and thought they were wonderful but I cannot remember anything about them now. Ditto Doris Lessing and the Martha Quest series. I do worry that if I went back to them I wouldn't like them second time around.

SarahAndFuck England Tue 10-Sep-13 21:15:08

I reread books because some of them just have to be read more than once.

Sometimes it is a comfort thing and often you get more out of a book second or third or twentieth time around because you are older, your life has changed and you can take something new away from it because you are ready for it now.

I get different things out of old favourites now I am older and have experienced different things in my life. They can completely change, sometimes I don't like them as much, sometimes I wonder how I could have missed something so important, sometimes I love them even more than before.

Books you love are like friends you love. Why would you only visit them once? If you love them, there's always something new to gain from returning to them.

I can't think of all the books I've reread because I love them but I'll put a few and try to give a reason for what I get out of them.

I love Stephen King's IT and The Stand and have reread both (and many of his others) often. I think there's something to learn from in both of them, and in fact most of his books have strong ethics and morals in them that rereading only helps to make clearer.

Jean Webb's Daddy Long Legs is lovely and is one of my comfort books.

The Lord of the Rings series has been one of my favourites for years, although on first reading it I hated it.

We Need To Talk About Kevin is very powerful and I think it's a must read, it deserves classic status.

Happenstance by Carol Shields has been a favourite for a long time. It's two books in one really, the story of the same five days told first from the wife's perspective and then from the husbands. Or vice versa, depending which side of the book you start from. My copy flips over so you can choose. I like The Republic of Love by the same author.

I reread The Slap, one of the most hated books ever I think, because even though I hated it the first time around, I couldn't stop thinking about it afterwards and I needed to read it again. I did get more out of it the second time and have kept it because I think I will read it again one day.

I like horror books best I think, so if something is well written and 'scares' me then I am likely to return to it. Discomfort reading can be just as good as comfort reading smile

And if something is particularly funny then that's always good to go back to as well.

oinktopus Thu 19-Sep-13 18:29:20

I re-read because I enjoyed something so much the first time around, I know I'll enjoy it again the second. Also, there are books that you don't entirely soak up first time round and re-reading adds little motes of richness. The book I've re-read most is One Hundred Years of Solitude, and that's because I think it's the most beautiful book I've ever read.

I tend to re-read Catch 22, Catcher in the Rye, Captain Corelli's Mandolin, Brave New World, Slaughterhouse 5, A Prayer For Owen Meany, Rage, The Long Walk, Breakfast of Champions, and Chronicle of a Death Foretold too (all read at least five times each). The most recent addition to re-reading is English Passengers, which I absolutely love.

EugenesAxe Thu 19-Sep-13 18:39:24

I was born for Telly Tubbies ("Again again!") but unfortunately they were well after my time. I re-read, re-watch, you name it. Normally it's comfort, escapism, being with an 'old friend' of a book. Or just because they are great stories and I enjoy them every time. My main ones are:

Lord of the Rings (soooo many times; I think I estimated about 45 times 15 years ago, although I've slowed up a bit since the start)
Narnia
Harry Potter
My Family and Other Animals

But I have re-read many in my collection. A lot of Jane Austen I re-read, Dead Babies, Weirdstone of Brisingamen, In A Glass Darkly, Watership Down, Dahl stories, Hitchhikers'.

mum2jakie Thu 19-Sep-13 18:44:57

I re-read loads, especially when I'm feeling stressed or tired. I find reading a new book can sometimes be an emotional rollercoaster or require too much concentration!

I love re-reading Agatha Christie novels but can only do this every few years or so as I end up remembering the murderer otherwise. Sometimes I do remember midway through but still enjoy finding out the method and seeing things unravel.

You know exactly where you stand with a book that's you've already read and never feel disappointed.

ModeratelyObvious Thu 19-Sep-13 21:45:40

Comfort
Attention span
You can put it down when it's bedtime because you know what will happen next!

oinktopus Thu 19-Sep-13 22:05:58

ModeratelyObvious Very well put! A well-read book is like a DP. You know it's something you like but you no longer have the pressure of either of you proving it.

juniperinNZ Thu 26-Sep-13 06:43:07

I always have to be reading something, and read quickly too. I reread books that stick with me - I'll often find myself thinking about plot lines from certain books and think ooh I must read that again! It's kind of like meeting an old friend, and I always find I get something new out of the book (or at least lots of forgotten things!). It tends to be books I haven't read for a couple of years.
If I'm reading the next book in a series I also normally reread the first books (if there has been a wait before the next one is published). I finally got round to reading the second book in the Discovery of Witches trilogy (?) and reread the first, I find it really helps to familiarise myself with the characters, plot etc. again.
I don't know if this is the case with anyone else, but when I finish a really good book that I have been totally immersed in, I can sometimes find it really tricky to choose what to read next in case it is a disappointment smile so will often choose to go back to something I know first before choosing a new book. Or is that just me...

Foosyerdoos Thu 26-Sep-13 19:50:19

I think some books become like friends or I miss the characters so need to go back to them. There are only a few books I re-read.
The Lord of the Rings
Red Mars Trilogy - Kim Stanley Robinson
The Stand
Eon- Greg Bear
Terms of Endearment - Larry McMurtry

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