Monday, October 20, 2014

Reader Quirk: Re-reading

Today's quirk is re-reading. One of the most common things I hear from people who don't like to read is, "But you've read that already!" or, "Oh, I've read it. Why would I read it again?" I do not understand those people. 

I buy my books because I want to keep them around to read and re-read. That's the whole reason to own books! They're not just a pretty shelf decoration. (Though they do serve that dual purpose.)

Here is my case for re-reading. 

  • If you love a book, why wouldn't you want to enjoy it again?

It's the best thing in the world to pick up a book I know for sure I will love. I get attached to these characters and drawn into their worlds. It's nice to go back every so often and remind myself of how it felt to read that book. Whether it made me happy, made me cry, or kept me up for 72 hours because I was so terrified (I'm looking at you, Stephen King), it's awesome to go back and have that again.

  • You might have missed something the first time. (or the second, or the third...)

I have read a book for the fifth time and found something I hadn't quite picked up on the previous four. There's always some new nuance to read into. 

  • Over time, you'll forget details.

I am kickass at book trivia. Do you know why? It's because I reread. I know that the hair accessory McGonagall chastised Parvati Patil for was a large ornamental butterfly because I've read the entire series several times. Re-reading is the way to remember details. 

  • You change over time. 

I'm not the same person I was when I was seven, so the next time I read Pollyanna, it will be a different experience. Over time, you'll gain knowledge and life experience. Let me tell you, it opens your eyes to different points of view in books. When you were ten, you might have empathized with one character, but when you're twenty, you'll empathize with another. It tells you something about yourself.

  • Certain books can help you through different events in life.

Hey, remember that book about a girl who moved and had to adjust to a different school? Gee, that might be nice to read when you face the same situation. There is a book for everything that stresses you out. You have only to open it. It would be a shame to turn your back on such a rich well of comfort just because you've read it before.


  1. Re-reading is so important! You get so much more from a book the second/third/fourth time round. My one problem with re-reading now I have a blog is that it means I get through fewer new books and can't post as many reviews, but I'm working on finding a balance. I would add to your list that you get to spend more time in the book's world. I re-read the Harry Potter series pretty regularly for that reason (and also because, y'know, it's Harry Potter). Great list! I will direct people to this post whenever they question my re-reading habits :P
    Rachel @ Dashing Good Books

    1. I definitely agree with the 'spending more time in the worlds' bit. I've read A Series of Unfortunate Events too many times to think about, but I keep going back because I want to be in the story's world.


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