Re-reading books

08 Oct


  • Does the opinion of the book change?
  • Why did it (not) change?
  • Was the original verdict determined on an emotional connection with the book at the time?
  • So, it depends on the state of mind at that particular point in time?
  • Does it depend on the situation/world one was in at the time the book was read?
  • What is the significance of a change of opinion?
  • Does it matter?
  • How will re-reading it in a short space of time instead of years after affect opinion the 2nd time?
  • Is the person reading the book in 2012 the same as in 2004 when the book was first read?
  • Why was the book re-read?
  • To confirm the existing impression, memory and verdict?
  • To explore the book on a deeper level?
  • Is the reaction to the book what is sought after or more knowledge of the book itself?
  • Does the fact that there are no more surprises in terms of story or examination of the book matter?
  • Did one see, react and think at the time of the first read the things he is seeing now but just forgot that he did?

Posted by on October 8, 2012 in Books



2 responses to “Re-reading books

  1. jameswharris

    October 8, 2012 at 23:54

    Costas, this is intellectual territory I love. My first bout of major science fiction reading was between the ages 12-19, back in the 1960s and early 1970s. Then in 2002 I joined and started buying audiobooks I had first read as a teen, but listening to them in my fifties. The contrast between then and now was great. There were books I loved then, but can’t even read now, like The Foundation series. And other books I couldn’t read then, but love now, like Charles Dickens. Then there are books I loved then and still love, like the Heinlein juveniles. Why and how did I change?

    There are damn few books I’ve reread in the same decade. Two are Replay by Ken Grimwood and The Life of Pi by Yann Martel. I wish I had more time to reread books. Now when I reread a book it’s because I want to get more out of it, or because a movie version is coming out. I listened to Cloud Atlas when it came out, and I just bought a copy to reread before the movie.

    • Costas Taliadoros

      October 10, 2012 at 15:51

      Hehehe, I can certainly relate to the ” books i loved then, but can’t even read now”. When i was a teenager i was a big Tom Clancy and Dan Brown. There is no way i could read these now…

      I also read Jules Verne and Dumas a lot but have not attempted to re-read them so i am curious to try.

      It’s fascinating to re-read books which i am discovering now. If only to examine yourself while doing it. Life of Pi is one book i’d love to re-read at some point as well.


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