Let’s Talk Bookish: Rereading Books

Let’s Talk Bookish is a weekly meme hosted by Rukky @ Eternity Books and Dani @ Literary Lion. Today’s topic is Rereading Books.


How many times is enough? Why re-read at all? Is re-reading just a comforting pastime? Or is there excitement to be relived?

The main reason I reread books is to relive my favourite stories all over again. Nothing compares to the first time of course, but once I know the plot and all the twists and turns to come, I can sit back and enjoy the story more thoroughly and calmly, because I already know this is a story I love. That sense of familiarity is definitely a very comforting feeling, especially with childhood favourites – there’s nothing quite like escaping into the world of a story I know like the back of my hand.

Re-reading is an opportunity to look at a book through a different lens, to pick up on the more subtle themes, and each re-read is a whole new experience. I also use re-reading as a technique to get out of reading slumps and it always works. Occasionally, I also re-read a series in anticipation of a sequel if the gap between books has been too long.

I don’t think there is a limit on the number of times a book can be re-read. I have a couple of books I reread atleast once a year without fail, and a couple of bigger ones every other year.

What kind of books do you re-read?

When it comes to the usual books on my TBR, I don’t have any specific criteria as to the types of books I re-read. Whenever I finish reading a book for the first time, I always ask myself if it’s something I liked enough that I would re-read it. Classics, however, are always on my re-read list. The nature of the genre itself is such that there is something new to appreciate each time.

Do you ever re-read books you don’t like in hopes that it will be better the second time? Were there any books you didn’t like as a child but liked as an adult, or vice versa?

Very rarely. For many years now, I’ve made it a point to never force myself to read something I dislike, and re-reading something I didn’t enjoy the first time is almost always going to be a bad idea. The exception to this is for series, when I didn’t like the book for some reason, but feel invested enough in the story that I intend to pick up the sequel. In those cases, I always try to revisit the first book to see if my opinion changes, and an excellent example of a recent one is We Hunt the Flame by Hafsah Faizal. The first time around, I felt like there was too much going on, the pacing too slow and overall very difficult to grasp. However, when I re-read it, it was so much easier to follow and I was able to really appreciate the plot – and the sequel, We Free the Stars, ended up being one of my favourite books that year.

I don’t think there are any books that I disliked as a child that I like as an adult but there are certainly many books I liked then that I like much better now! The opposite is very true however. I find very few children’s or even middle-grade novels outside the classics to my taste these days when I know I would have loved them as a kid.


Do you re-read books? Why or why not? Share your thoughts in the comments below!


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20 thoughts on “Let’s Talk Bookish: Rereading Books

  1. Marta the Monogamist Reader January 28, 2022 / 12:35 pm

    I wish I had more time for re-reading, especially when I have to pick up a sequel or third book of a series and I don’t remember what happened. Great post, Raji!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Raji (@journeyintofantasy) January 30, 2022 / 7:34 pm

      Thanks Marta! Agreed, new books tend to be rather distracting and even overwhelming at times, so it’s hard to make time for rereading.

      Like

  2. frayedbooks January 28, 2022 / 1:41 pm

    I always enjoy reliving my favorite stories again and rereading, although I don’t do it often enough! Often times I’ll pick up on points I had missed the first time around too.

    Its funny you mention We Hunt The Flame because I started the audio for that and couldn’t follow along, but I do plan to pick it up as a print book so I’m glad to hear you did enjoy it the second time around!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Jaya Avendel January 28, 2022 / 4:43 pm

    When I reread books, I have the comfort of knowing the story and so can pick up on quieter themes, more fully feel the chapters and moments that I love, and have no reason not to skip ahead a little. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Rocking Specter January 28, 2022 / 4:44 pm

    Thank you for sharing this post on rereading books. Someone once told us that it is better to reread great books that we like than try finding new books that suck.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Raji (@journeyintofantasy) January 30, 2022 / 7:29 pm

      That’s a great perspective! A bad read can easily put one off picking up a book for several days if not weeks, so a known favourite is always a safe choice. Thanks for reading and commenting!

      Like

  5. Briana | Pages Unbound January 29, 2022 / 11:17 am

    I tend to reread mostly classics these days, too. As a kid, I would reread the initial books in a series before the next book came out, but now I just don’t have the kind of time to read the same books in a series 5 times simply to remember the plot when I could be reading new books.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Raji (@journeyintofantasy) January 30, 2022 / 7:26 pm

      Totally agree, I used to love rereading all the books before a sequel was to be released too! Nowadays if I’m sparing the time for a re-read, it’s usually for a tried and true favourite. Thanks for reading and commenting!

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Rayo January 30, 2022 / 2:02 am

    I like rereading books that made me feel a certain kind of way like put something in perspective that I never thought before. I like relishing such moments and absorb the information once again.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Raji (@journeyintofantasy) January 30, 2022 / 7:23 pm

      Agreed! Often on the first read, the finer points are easily missed and it’s such a good feeling to pick up on these during a reread. Thanks for reading and commenting!

      Liked by 1 person

  7. S.S. Mitchell January 30, 2022 / 3:14 pm

    I’m a Literary Fiction reader and I love to reread books in this genre. The most I have read one novel is about four times!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Raji (@journeyintofantasy) January 30, 2022 / 7:22 pm

      That’s great! It’s a wonderful genre to reread, it takes a bit more effort than others, but so worth it!

      Like

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