I read a lot of books, but more importantly, I re-read books.
I’ve come to find out not a lot of people read something more than once, which boggles my mind because if you liked a book, why not re-join that universe and those characters over and over again?
Why read something when you already know how it ends? You say. That’s precisely why I re-read! I answer. I can predict the ending and the twists and the turns and even if the obstacles seem as insurmountable as before, I already know the outcome, so I can enjoy the journey to get there. I can pick up on more details instead of focusing on just the big plot points, which allows me to breathe in the book’s universe more deeply.
Occasionally, all I want to do is wallow and cry and picking up a sad book facilitates that. Knowing how the sadness takes shape allows me to control how low I go. (And sometimes, I’ll just turn on the beginning of BRIDGET JONES’S DIARY (the movie) and that does the trick of encouraging self-pity, but then dragging me away from it.)
Or I’ll pick up a book I know will make me laugh and grin away the dark mood.
Other times, I want to surround myself with pretty language to drown out the ugly words in my head.
There are also times I want to play detective, but I’m horrible at solving mysteries, so re-joining a universe where I know who the bad guy is means I catch all the clues giving my ego gets a much needed boost. And some books have such a huge twist that you have to read it twice in a row so you can read the story with a fresh set of eyes and pick up on all you originally missed.
But the main reason I re-read is because it’s the familiar that’s comfortable / what I’m seeking. Life can get crazy and be unstable and hard to handle. Knowing how a book will take shape? Being able to predict the ending? That’s a nice walk down easy street. A fabulous way to clear the mind and steady the heart.
What are some of the books I’ve read more than once?
CODE NAME VERITY by Elizabeth Wein*
GRACELING by Kristin Cashore
HARRY POTTER series by J.K. Rowling (I’ve re-read books 3 and 4 the most.)
IF I STAY by Gayle Forman*
METRO GIRL by Janet Evanovich
SIMON VS THE HOMO SAPIENS AGENDA by Becky Albertalli*
THE FAULT IN OUR STARS by John Green
THE GUERNSEY LITERARY AND POTATO PEEL PIE SOCIETY by Annie Barrows*
THE HUNGER GAMES by Suzanne Collins* (note, just THG, not the other two)
THE RAMBLERS by Aidan Donnelley Rowley*
THE ROSIE PROJECT by Graeme Simsion*
THE SCORPIO RACES by Maggie Stiefvater* (I re-read this every November. If you’ve read the book, you’ll know why.)
THE SKY IS EVERYWHERE by Jandy Nelson
THE WITNESS and CHASING FIRE by Nora Roberts*
TINY BEAUTIFUL THINGS by Cheryl Strayed*
*Books I’ve both read and listened to.
Do YOU re-read books? If so, which ones? If not, why not?