There are books that I regularly reread. I reread Christopher Moore’s Lamb around Easter, and Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett’s Good Omens around Christmas. I reread a classic scary story around Halloween every year. There are some books I’ve read so many times that I have entire scenes memorized, sometimes with dialog.
But at last count, I own more than 650 books. With all the new books coming out and all the books that I haven’t gotten to yet, it seems like a waste to go back and reread books. The problem with this kind of thinking is that it doesn’t allow for the relationship that you can have with your favorite books.
This isn’t meant to be a soppy post about loving books. Let’s just take that as read. (No pun intended*.)
The reason that I’m writing about rereading is probably because I feel a bit snowed under with my reading pile. I’ve got books from the library, ebooks from Netgalley, books I bought. I have a lot to read. And yet, I have hankerings to reread books that I really enjoyed the first time around. They really weren’t kidding about the so many books, so little time thing.
When I get the hankering to reread books for the second time, I feel a little bit of trepidation. What if the book isn’t as good as I remembered? I actually liked The Da Vinci Code the first time around, but the second time I hated, hated the dialog and the exposition. I don’t know what I was thinking the first time around.
Once you get past the second read, that’s another story**. Good books that I know well become palate cleansers. If I read an absolutely outstanding book, one that’s hard to follow up with something just as good, I can go back to an old favorite. If I read a crap book, I can read a book I love to restore my faith in books.
I freely admit that I haven’t reread everything in my collection. But, someday, I’ll get back to them.