Monday, January 20, 2014

Discussion Post: Rereading

Monday, January 20, 2014 10:55 AM with 25 comments
Winnie-the-pooh-reading 

When I was younger I reread books all the time. I cannot even tell you how many times I read all the books in The Baby-Sitters Club series or the ones in The Fabulous Five series or the ones in The Secret Circle series or Sweet Valley High or Sweet Valley Twins or this one book whose name I can't remember that was about a girl who falls in love with a senior when she is a freshman and follows her throughout her high school career because as a sophomore who fell for a senior I just connected with that book so much. Even as an adult, especially before I started blogging, I would often pick up a beloved book to reread. I've easily read some of my favorite adult and YA books 3-5 times each. To me, there is just nothing like diving back into a story I love.

When I started blogging that all changed. I don't get physical ARCs--although I also haven't gone after them--but the folks over at Netgalley and Edelweiss are extremely kind to me. I'm white-listed on EW by a few different publishers and it's so hard not download (or request) books when I see their pretty covers--even when I know I should resist. I just literally cannot help myself. It's my one true vice (but it's better than crack, so there's that). Because I have all of these review copies, not to mention the roughly 50 books I have checked out from the library right now...What? It's not a completely insane amount. What's that? It is an insane amount? Don't judge me...I sometimes feel guilty when I hear a beloved favorite calling me from my book shelf.

 


I've decided not to let it get to me anymore, though. I love to reread. I do, and when I force myself to read something else I almost always end up not liking it, or more often than not, not finishing it. My solution has been to reread old favorites alongside an ARC or library book (or both; I tend to read several books at once, but that's a whole different topic). Not all the time. I'm not rereading anything right now, for example, but sometimes I get a craving for a book like a pregnant woman craves pickles and ice cream, and I'm not going to stop myself from reading what I want any longer.

Furthermore, I find that the best way to get myself out of a major book slump is to read something I already know I will enjoy. I know I'm not alone when I say that after I read a new book that I absolutely adored it can sometimes be hard to get into the next book. Nothing comes close to what I just read--except for an old stand-by. I almost always reread a book when I find myself stuck in a slump. Nothing is worse than not being able to find a book you can connect with. 

The downside of rereading for me is when it is done out of necessity. Mainly when the next book of a series comes out and I realize that my memory of the first (or second or third) book is hazy at best...but that's for another discussion.

What about you? Do like rereading an old favorite again and again, or are you more a one and done type of person? Do you have a crazy library habit like me, or do you just check out 1 or 2 books at a time? I'd love to hear all about your rereading habits.


25 comments:

  1. Great topic! I can tell you the exact time I last reread a book: February 2012, the last month before I started book blogging :) And I absolutely get what you mean!! I used to get a little crazy about rereading. Um...like...reading every.single.Harry Potter book. 13. times.
    Anyway! l think rereading is totally awesome if it's what you want to do! It's awful that we feel pressured to read all the new books (and the old ones) and don't have time to read what we'd actually enjoy at that moment. So yeah, I think if you feel like rereading, do it!
    On the other hand, I really used to overdo it on the rereading. See Harry Potter example above. And I know, if it's what I enjoy it's absolutely fine to reread a series 13 times - but it also deprives you of new stories. Because I personally strongly believe that we learn and grow the most when we're reading new stories and new characters and new worlds. Woah, I could write my own post about this - that's how much I love the topic!! So, I guess for people like me who have huge letting-go and trying-something-new problems, it's a good thing not to reread much. However, if you really crave a story you already love I don't see anything wrong with rereading it :D

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    1. I've read the HP series 3 times each. 13 is amazing! I agree that people should branch out and read new things because each book should teach us something--even if it is small, but I definitely think there is a place for a beloved book as well.
      You should totally write your own post on this topic--it sounds like you have a lot to say about it. Which I love. :)
      Thanks for stopping by!

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  2. One of my co-bloggers just wrote a post about this, so it's been on my mind. I love to re-read my old favorites, but she feels like it takes time away from new stories.

    I think the main reason I re-read is because I actually start to miss my favorite characters. But then too, I have about 500 books on my to-read list. How am I going to get to all of those?!?!? Not by re-reading. I guess I can see both sides . . .

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    1. I'll have to stop by and take a look. I can see both sides, too, but there is just nothing like curling up with an old favorite. But you are right, my TBR pile of just ARCs alone is out of control, not to mention the books I've bought because I have to have them that are just sitting on my shelf, not to mention the billion library books I have checked out. It makes me crazy just thinking about it. I think that is why I turn to a book I've already read, my TBR pile is just too overwhelming!
      Thanks for stopping by!

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  3. Amazing topic. I used to reread constantly but, like you, that all changed when I started blogging. I have been very naughty and requested and downloaded way too many EW and NG ARCs. Plus, I work at a library and currently have 87 library books sitting on my bookshelf at home waiting to be read - that's not a crazy amount either, right? I usually have to reread a book before I read the next in the series, my memory SUCKS and that's not as enjoyable as rereading a book just because you want to. I got in a reading slump a few weeks ago and really struggled to get out of it, think I would have done it a lot quicker if I had read an old favourite. I am going to try and take a leaf out of your book, and if I want to reread a book I will just do it - instead of feeling bad because of all the ARCs I have sitting on my Kindle waiting to be read.

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    1. I work at my library, too. I didn't want to give the real number of items I have checked out, lol, but it includes DVDs and CDs and books on CD. I hate it when I have to reread for the next book in a series. My memory for books is definitely not what it used to be. I think it is the pressure of how many books I know I should read just gets to me sometimes and makes me fall into those awful slumps. Rereading has definitely helped me in those situations.
      Thanks for stopping by!

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  4. "Nothing is worse than not being able to find a book you can connect with." Wise words. If there's one thing that kills a book for it, it is a lack of connection. :(

    Anyway . . . I love rereading books! I don't do it that often, but sometimes it's just nice to pull an old favorite off the shelf and spend some quality time with it. A lot of times, I'll just spend some time flipping through and reading my favorite parts. I like to do that during reading slumps. :)

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    1. Don't you hate it! I cannot stand it when nothing will hold my attention. Those slumps where I'll pick something up read 10-20 pages, put it down, pick something else up, over and over. That's when rereading comes in handy.
      Thanks for stopping by!

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  5. I like to reread some of my old favourites, mainly my lighter/funnier books (like Pratchett). When I have a stack of books that I haven't read and I'm not sure I'll like, I'll pick up a good ol' favourite before bed because it makes me feel happy. :) I don't actively plan rereading though, it's more of a "hey, I haven't picked this up in a while!" kind of instinct.

    As for a crazy library habit, I check out maybe five or six books at a time. Haha! :)

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    1. I tend to pick up the lighter books for rereading, too. I never really plan it either, I'll just get these crazy urges to pick up an old favorite and won't be happy until I do.
      Five or six. That's so controlled of you. :)
      Thanks for stopping by!

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  6. Before book blogging, I reread books quite frequently. Namely the same three books, which always made me feel wonderful about reading because they would give me my fix on whatever I wanted. If I wanted fantasy, I had my fantasy favourite. If I wanted paranormal, I had my paranormal favourite. And if I wanted trashy romance, well I had a favourite of that, as well.
    I have not reread one book since I started blogging. There have been ARCs, and author requests, and book tours (which I have since given up on for numerous reasons). I was one of those people that went crazy with NG and when the ratios were released ... wow. I have since raised my ratio up a bit, but I still have quite a few to go. And then there's my author requests, and the ARCs. *starts hyperventilating* This is why I haven't had time to reread. Along with the fact that heaps of new books are released, and I have read older ones that I have always been interested in reading.
    But I want to start rereading again. I miss the comfort of falling back into a world that I love dearly. Hopefully I can do that this year.
    As for the library ... there is no self control in that place. I check out 15 books, even if I know I won't get around to reading them all. I just cannot put a book down once I have picked it up. It's like cutting off a limb, or choosing a favourite pet.

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    1. I know! I start hyperventilating when I think of all the books I really should read, too. I don't even want to know what my ratio is, but I know it is piss poor. I started out the year all gong ho to, that this was the year I would read all of the books I downloaded or requested and already I've only read a handful of the books I should have read for Jan. I've been giving myself a pep talk about Feb already. Lol.
      I love the comfort of a good reread, too, though and will give myself a break if that's what I decide I need to pick up.
      15 books really isn't too bad. You should seriously see the piles of library books I'm rocking right now.
      Thanks for stopping by!

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  7. Ha! I just posted about this on one of my co-run blogs. ;) (Which I think you commented on, if my memory serves me correct, and let's face it, it usually doesn't. -_-) Still! I understand both sides of rereading and not rereading. I usually DON'T reread. But that's mostly for times sake. And often, if I try to read my childhood favourites, I don't like them as much. It's sad.

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    1. I don't usually reread childhood favorites. The books I reread tend to be ones I've read in the last year or two and really connected with. I have read the HP series a few times and The Jessica Darling series a few times. But, yeah, I would be afraid to go back to the books I loved as a child as there is no way I would look at them the same way. Thanks for stopping by!

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  8. I have a love/hate relationship with rereading. Currently I'm rereading Miss Peregrine's Home For Peculiar Children so that it will be fresh in my mind when I read Hollow City. I have a terrible book memory which can be frustrating with long series. However, it's also pretty wonderful that I can wait a few years and my favorites still hold some suspense for me the second/third time I read them. Excellent discussion post! Also if you ever want to skip rereading there is a blog called Recaptains that does refreshers for series! It's saved me rereading Cinder & Scarlet this week! :)

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    1. I have that one checked out from the library with the sequel on its way. I haven't read the first, but people seem pretty blown away by the second so I thought I'd give it a try. I do know about that site, and have used it before. I just like to actually read the story. My memory is horrible when it comes to books these days, too, so that site can definitely come in handy if you don't have time to reread, or just don't want to. Thanks, Sabrina!

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  9. I've never been too huge on re-reading, with the exception of the Harry Potter series and one book about a teen girl who gets a book published. For me, it's hard to want to go back when so many shiny new stories are reaching out and calling to me.

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    1. I can completely see that side of the coin, too. There are always so many new books that I want to read (as can be attested by my stuffed Kindle, overflowing shelves, and piles of library books scattered on the floor), and I think that's part of the problem. Sometimes I'm so overwhelmed by my choices that I just pick up an old favorite to avoid having to choose. It's silly, I know. Thanks for stopping by!

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  10. I love re-reading, and, like you, I used to do it all the time before blogging and now...not so much. I actually just re-read Finnikin of the Rock so that I could read the following two books in the series for the first time and it was wonderful. I only read one book at a time, and it felt naughty and delicious to devote my time to reading something I wouldn't be reviewing, but also so, so right. I think we all need breaks some time from reading books for review, and re-reading is a perfect way to take a break. I also like your point that it can help get you out of a reading slump - so true!

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    1. I haven't read that series, but I've heard great things. I think reading just one book at a time is more efficient, but I just can't help but read more than one. Usually one of the books I'm reading will "win" and I'll put the others aside to finish it, but when I'm starting a new book it is almost always alongside a couple of others. Thanks for stopping by!

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  11. I used to be a HUGE re-reader. But no one else in my family is -- they think it's a huge waste of time. Re-reading is great for mood reading -- sometimes I'm in the mood for a particular kind of book and am in no mood for a disappointing book, and in those cases, I can go to my shelf and pick just what I want to read.
    I agree that blogging has changed that. Not only do I not have time to re-read my old favorites, I get a little annoyed when authors don't weave a little recap into subsequent books in trilogies.
    Great topic :)
    Jen @ YA Romantics

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    1. I like recaps, too, but still almost always feel the need to read the first book or two in a series before picking up the newest one. The fact that rereading has gone out the window since everyone started blogging seems to be the consensus. That makes me kind of sad. Thanks for stopping by!

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  12. I've reread a bit now that I'm blogging, but definitely not as much as I used to. But you're right, sometimes you're just in the mood for a certain book and you know it will be great. I've been in the mood to reread the Infernal Devices series because I want to binge read it and now that I know how it ends, I feel like I can just relax and enjoy it even more. But I have about 30 books from the library sitting on my bookshelves along with about 20 books on my Kindle that I haven't read, so I keep putting off the reread. Not to mention there are so many series enders that are coming out this month and next month and that means I have to reread the first two books in the series (because I have such a horrible memory). And that's not the fun reread because I want to, but because I feel like I have to in order to enjoy the last book. Oh well! Great discussion post! ~Pam

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    1. The Having to reread is definitely the downside to rereading. I always feel like I need to pick up earlier books, too. I just read too much to keep the smaller details in my head. I haven't read The Infernal Devices series (or anything by the author for that matter), but I've heard great things. I say go for it! If that is what you feel like reading than do it. Thanks, Pam!

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  13. I'm sad at how little time I have to re-read books these days. The only plus is that sometimes I use Audible to listen to old favorites, or refresh my memory of a previous book in a series. I completely agree...forcing myself to read something from my "schedule" usually results in me not liking the story as much as I might have otherwise, so I'm doing a great disservice to that book and its author. I still can't justify regularly re-reading books, but I am doing better at picking what I want to read instead of what I "have" to read. Great topic!

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Hello, there! Thanks for taking the time to comment. I read each and every one and will do my best to respond--usually on your blog instead of on mine. I will, however, always answer direct questions. Due to serious time restraints, this blog is now an award free zone, but I appreciate the thought!