What Happened to Rereading Books?

Image by Fabiola Penalba

Earlier this month I participated in a rereadathon and was one of the twenty-one hosts involved. I posted about giving books a second chance but mostly about this one book called Nowhere But Here which I could only think of not fully loving since it had lots of sexual tension which I found a bit... embarrassing? Like who wants to be one of those moms who read Fifty Shades of Grey? Or maybe you are or maybe you love anything with a steamy romance. I have on the other hand have always been in my head about discussing those books very sparingly to not at all because they are something to enjoy privately - basically they are guilty pleasures. So after I wrote that post, I reread Nowhere But Here and a childhood favorite of mine - A Week in the Woods.

I've read A Week in the Woods at least three times since I was a kid. It's one of those books that made me fall in love with nature. If you knew me in real life you would probably laugh at the statement since I'm very much a homebody. But, in my dream future life I would always be out biking, running, hiking, or swimming outside. And I absolutely want to just spend my time in parks and woods. I took a trip after I graduated high school with my parents to Georgia where I somehow first realized that mountains can have trees on them... yeah. I think my mind never really thought about it before even though I'm sure I've seen pictures. Anyways, we spent the whole time walking around through hills, parks, and near waterfalls. It was one of my best experiences in my entire life (thanks mom and dad for indulging me). A Week in the Woods was one of those stories that inspired me to want that kind of life (which I'm going to have more time to do soon!!!). Did I still love it?


There was a little bit of fear in me not enjoying A Week in the Woods. It's been three and a half years since I last read this book. Three and a half! And I still absolutely loved everything about it. There was not one flaw I found. I didn't falter and say, "oh no, this wasn't as good as I remember." It made me want to go camping and hiking. I want to go row a boat and trail running! This is absolutely the book I needed right now too. I've gotten back into fitness after more than a year of not doing anything which is really sad to me. It has renewed my love for the outdoors. I just want to plan my days off and summer and possible road trips. That's all I could hope for when reading this favorite. Because that's why it is a favorite. It continues to evoke what I felt as a child - possibilities.

But what about that second chance read? Well, Nowhere But Here was first a two star read, the second read was three stars, and now... it's a three and a half star read. I was kind of surprised by this fact later on. I thought I was going to let all my guilty pleasure and not caring if it had sexual tension thoughts go. And I did. It's just it could have been done better. It's nice to know though that I'm talking about this or rather writing about it because I shy away from reviewing steamy books. I have in the past but I usually skimmed over/didn't mention anything about those parts. This time I'm going to mention them... it was a bit much. This good girl is all of a sudden a different person who seduces a hot guy? Come, on. Plus there were a few cringy moments tied with Oz and Emily. A particular scene had Oz saying how she called out for him and needed him! Ugh. Emily was a bit naive too. She would be rude to her father when she's been given evidence to disprove her prior thoughts. Otherwise though, I love the motorcycle club that surrounded the story. I still found the story's plot interesting and engaging. The secondary characters were actually around so I could get their perspectives every once in a while. And the romance at certain points was actually pretty great. I always appreciated that Emily was saving herself not necessarily for marriage but when she felt ready as an adult. You don't really see that in YA books although I would consider Nowhere But Here an NA read to be honest. Still, a nice thing to see.

And that brings me to my question.

You know. The question in the title of this post that I have yet to write about? That one? Well, this whole experience of the rereadathon has made me think about how much I don't reread books. It's really all about those new books. And why? A lot of the new books I've been reading don't compare to some of my older reads. I think I have such an eclectic reading and reviewing preference that I sometimes just don't reread books because I need to review something I've never mentioned on my blog. I say eclectic and what I really mean is that I read all age groups. I love doing posts about picture books I've read but I've not done one this year because I thought it would bore people. I also do this thing where I compare my Goodreads challenge to everyone and everyone else's is so cohesive and make sense together while I currently have a bunch of seemingly random, albeit colorful reads inter-spliced with about ten picture books. I like aesthetically good looking reading challenges. Yes weird, but also a fact.

So uneven...

Anywho, I'm aware that I don't read the same things or the books that are popular when they are popular so why reread? Those books are definitely too old. No one cares about them anymore. You've already mentioned them. As I type this I understand that I still read a lot of older books. I think I've been thinking these past few years it's a waste of time to reread when I can be reading books books I've never read before.

That's all kind of changed in my mind. I've been having crazy reading slumps and now not enjoying books as much that I thought I would. Sometimes it's nice to just dive back into a story you already know. Feel those feelings again. Feel inspired, shocked, giddy, or whatever a reread will evoke.

What about you? Do you tend to reread books or do you hardly ever do so?


  1. I feel that sense of possibilities is one of the best things about being young- and when re- reading a book brings that feeling back that's an amazing thing! Also, when a re- read still feels fresh and just as timely or satisfying as ever!

    I don't re- read as much as I'd like, it is hard to balance with all the new stuff coming out, but I like to occasionally. Great post!

  2. I used to reread a lot before I started blogging. For awhile it's been all about new books. But I miss it. So for the next couple weeks, I'm just going to reread books from my shelves. A lot of those books have special memories associated with them, so I'm excited to relive all that.

  3. I don't reread anymore. When I was younger, I reread all the time. I had my favorites that I went back to time and again, all through high school even. But now that my genre preferences are so different, there is not much point of rereading. I read non-fiction, and it is not as though I would get a different feeling or interpretation by going back and reading again, the facts are the facts, until something new comes and shows otherwise. But I loved rereading as a child and teenager, and of course I reread by daughter's books to her all the time.

    1. Interesting, I do reread some self help type of books sometimes or at least have a hankering too. Maybe if I was reading straight up facts I would feel the same way. My interests are changing with reading as I grow older as well but I still want to try to reread more since I forget how much I love some particular books which is a shame because I might enjoy revisiting them again if only I gave them a chance.


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