Don’t we all have that one book close to our heart, which we would love to read again and again? The fictional place, narrative and emotions appear familiar and all the characters seem like friends. Well, it sounds very comforting, but does it hold the same joy or the compelling factor when you first read it? Do you re-read books?
Do You Re-read Books?
Much has been said and written about the benefits of re-reading a book, which cannot be dismissed. When you can watch a favourite movie again, why not read a book again? We often come across people saying ‘’Oh, I love that book and I have lost count on how many times I have re-read it.’’
Most of us love to re-read certain books as they take us down memory lane. Also,we wants to experience our favourite reading at a different stage of life. Re-reading To Kill A Mockingbird in your mid 40s will give you a more insightful view than when you read it as a teenager. Similarly, Ayn Rand’s character Howard Roark of The Fountainhead, might seem stubborn at one stage and few years later when you re-read the he might appear the most ideal man.
Is A Second Read Advisable?
It is hard to get over the book hangover but is a second read through a good idea? Not always, as it depends on the book in question. It might offer benefits to academics or children’s reading routine, to ensure increased comprehension. Books of non-fiction category such as self-help or philosophical tomes can help you shape your perspective and develop a mindset or habit by reading multiple times. You delve deep and make connections you missed in the initial read.
Some books have stood the test of time and are considered all-time classics like Homer’s Iliad, Odyssey, epics like The Mahabharat, TheRamayan, JRR Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings, Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice have all been re-read and interpreted with new perspectives and insights. While there are many Harry Potter fans who like to snuggle up with tea, chocolate frogs and wands, reliving the Hogwarts world as JK Rowling’s whimsical world’s curiosity gets the better of you.
You need to have a sense of depth while reading Bertrand Russell or James Joyce. The nuances might become clearer only in the second reading. But with fiction especially sleuth novels, we already know the plot. Whodunnit moments of thrill happen only once, like a twist in the plot or unexpected death of a character, etc. Without the element of suspense, passive reading becomes a dull experience, slowing down your thinking.
Why re-read when you can read something new?
While there are so many TBR books piled up and accessible as e-books, it is always a good idea to expand your horizons and discover something new and challenging. For a change-up, a prolific reader who loves repeated reading but has too little time, can focus on reading only certain sections such as a favourite quote or a situation.
Re-reading is natural if you like the author. For instance, Agatha Christie’s strong descriptions of a fictional village and captivating conclusions make her books far more enjoyable. This works out for those who wish to read their favourite book but have no patience to read the entire book. What matters is if you have enjoyed reading the second time around, if you don’t enjoy, let the spine stay intact and move on to a new book.
Do you find rereading exciting? If so, which book would you recommend for a must re-read?
Totally recommend re-reading! I seem to be doing only that! Every time I re-read a book, I discover something new, rediscover favorites to savour. Some books I’ve read numerous times would be all the Enid Blytons, Nancy Drews, Hitchcocks, Wodehouses. Recently it has been, the Twilight series and of course the Harry Potter series.
One book which I felt like re-reading was The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho. Re-reading some parts of the Bhagavd Gita stops me from giving up. I love re-reading anecdotes of Mother Teresa and a Periyaval, a Saint of Kanchi Kamakoti Peetham (a Hindu monastery).
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