I admit, I’m not much of a rereader. There are so, so many books I want to read that I feel like there’s no time to revisit the ones I’ve already read. In all honesty, besides childhood picture books, I can only think of three instances in which I reread a book: Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad and Metamorphosis by Franz Kafka – both of which I had to read for two separate classes in college, and both of which I kind of hated – and a young adult novella by Phyllis Reynolds Naylor called Jade Green. That latter one I only ever read for fun, and something about it kept drawing me back as a young teen.
Although not much has changed, and I still have a never-ending TBR that I’ll never be able to get through, there are a few books I do want to make time for reareading. These are all books I haven’t read in at least four years, and they’re all books I often think about revisiting.
The Shadow of the Wind – Carlos Ruiz Zafón
I read The Shadow of the Wind in fall 2016, and I absolutely LOVED it. It was perhaps the first book I’d ever read that’s really about books, authors, and a love of literature. That it’s set in Spain (my favorite country) is a huge bonus.
I plan to re-read this soon – not just because I want to relive the experience, but also because I plan to then read the other three books in the series. The Shadow of the Wind is the first in the Cemetery of Forgotten Books series, and I’m itching to read the rest of the series as soon as I refresh my memory on all that happens in book #1.
P.S. RIP Carlos Ruiz Zafón (1964 – 2020)
House of Leaves – Mark Z. Danielewski
Nine years ago (ugh, yes, I’m old now), I read House of Leaves during my last year as a college undergrad. It was fall quarter, and my English Honors class professor assigned this wild book. At over 700 pages, it seemed daunting, but the story was so engrossing – and unusually written – that I couldn’t put it down. Even as I read it, I knew I’d need to go back and read it again someday (preferably with more time to soak it in).
All these years later, I still think about House of Leaves often. I know I kept my copy from college, surely now hidden in a box somewhere. As soon as I find it, I’m determined to read this stunning novel again.
Jane Eyre – Charlotte Brontë
Jane Eyre was probably the first classic novel I ever read that I actually truly loved. It was assigned in my high school literature class, and I was instantly captivated. I loved it so much that I bought (and subjected my younger sister to) the 2003 BBC miniseries adaptation. Then when a new film adaptation came out in 2011, my mom and I saw it in theaters.
I want to reread Jane Eyre for a few reasons: 1) I’m curious to see if I still love it as much now as I did when I was 16; 2) I want to watch the movies again (this time forcing my husband to join me); 3) A few years ago I picked up a book called Mr. Rochester by Sarah Shoemaker; I want to get the original story fresh in my mind before I dive into this spin-off story.
Wuthering Heights – Emily Brontë
After reading Jane Eyre during my junior year of high school, five years later I read Wuthering Heights during my senior year at college. I loved how gothic it was, and I’ve since confirmed that I love this genre in general. So far, I’m two for two with the Brontë sisters! Someday I’ll have to read Anne Brontë.
Part of why I’m eager to reread Wuthering Heights is simply my plan to reread Jane Eyre. I think it’d be nice to read the Brontë sisters’ works side by side. But I’m also curious about watching a film adaptation of the book, and I figure it’d be best if I remember everything I need to be watching out for. Maybe I’ll find some good bookish retellings, too!
Moonlight Over Paris – Jennifer Robson
I read Moonlight Over Paris in fall 2016 (incidentally, immediately before I read The Shadow of the Wind). It was a time when I was getting into historical fiction, especially anything set in Europe. I loved the book and really connected with it.
Little did I know, though, that this was actually the third in a series. In fact, I didn’t find that out until a few months ago. Um… oops! So my plan is to go back and read the first two books in the Great War series – Somewhere in France and After the War is Over – and then go back and reread Moonlight Over Paris. I may just get something else out of it this time, too!
Sounds Like Me: My Life (So Far) In Song – Sara Bareilles
This may seem like an odd choice, given that everything else so far has been a novel, but hear me out. I read Sounds Like Me – a sort of memoir – right when it came out in October 2015. I’d been a fan of Sara Bareilles since 2007 when “Love Song” was a big hit, but it maybe wasn’t until I read this book that I figure out just how much of a fan. I read this whole book in one afternoon, which is really fast for me.
Since then, I’ve actually become a bigger fan of Sara, and have listened to her music nonstop for the last few years, finally seen her live, and watched her new TV series, Little Voice. She’s my new fave. So I’m eager to reread Sounds Like Me based on all that alone. But I also now have an audiobook version, read by Sara herself, and an updated copy of her book with newly added content. My rereading will actually be in a new format, but that still counts, right?
Those are six older books I want to reread soon. But there are many books I’ve read more recently that I will certainly want to revisit on some future day, too – novels like A Woman is No Man by Etaf Rum and The Girl with the Louding Voice by Abi Daré.
What about you? Do you reread books often? What books are you planning to reread sometime soon? Let me know in the comments!