Thursday, July 13, 2017

Discussion: Rereading Ruins Everything

Feed Your Fiction Addiction and It Starts At Midnight host the 2017 Discussion Challenge.

Okay, that title is melodramatic, but I’m having a crisis, people!

Before becoming a book blogger, I was a huge rereader. I probably reread more old favorites than new books each year. When I started book blogging, that all changed. I realized just how many books there are in the world. It seems like a thousand new ones are published every day. I pretty much stopped rereading a few years ago so that I could read ALL THE THINGS. 

But, I missed my old favorites, so I made a goal to reread at least one book a month in 2017. So far, I’ve reread 9 books (including the entire Harry Potter series), and I’ve rediscovered how much I love rereading.

When I made my goal, I didn’t know that it would wreak havoc on my life. Every time I reread a favorite, I end up with a massive book hangover. I spend days thinking about the favorite. I can’t move on. I pick up other books and put them down again. Whatever I read after the favorite just seems . . . unimpressive.

Then there are the star ratings on Goodreads. I honestly don’t put much stock in stars, but I do use star ratings to help me see at a glance which books I liked and which I didn’t. In the first half of 2017, I’ve only given 5 stars to 5 new-to-me books. At this point in past years, I’ve had way more 5-star reads. At first I figured it was just me being cold-hearted, but now that I’ve thought about it, I blame the rereads. I’m subconsciously comparing every new book to my old favorites. The newbies just aren’t as good as the oldies. Very few new books have excited me this year.

Speaking of excitement, that’s another problem. I’m way more excited about my To-Reread shelf than my To-Be-Read shelf. I want to be rereading. This is terrible for my TBR because I haven’t stopped acquiring new books. The new books are just piling up on the shelf while I think about which old one I’m going to read next.

I guess there isn’t really a point to this post because I’m not going to stop rereading, but the “issues” it has caused have been unexpected. I’m wondering if other people love rereading as much as I do.

Let’s discuss: Are you a rereader? If you are, have you experienced any of these problems?


  1. I love to reread! I think I've reread like 13 books so far this year. I don't really have the same problem, though - if anything, I'm the opposite. When I'm in a slump, I reread an old favorite because I know I'll love it and it'll be put me in a better reading mood. It usually helps get me out of a slump.

  2. I'm the same as you in that I used to be a big rereader, but completely stopped when I started blogging. I've been thinking about trying rereading again recently though, but now I'm kind of reconsidering... I can definitely see how rereading your old favourites could make new books seem worse in comparison!
    I'm also kind of scared that some of the books I want to reread won't be as good this time round (I'm pretty sure that isn't possible with the Harry Potter books, but I'm thinking it could be with some of my other old favourites!) because I'm now a lot older and I've read so many more books now and so have more favourites, and a bigger frame of reference.
    Ah, the dangers of rereading! :)

  3. Hi AJ - I'll totally concur with the card ... I just need to read the ones I've got let alone re-reading any of the ones I've kept because I love them ... or quote from them when writing my posts ... so good luck ... cheers Hilary

  4. I LOVE to reread my favorites. I've done this maybe 6 times so far this year. I've had no problem since becoming a book blogger to set aside time and reread. It helps me get out of my slump and clear my head so I can move onto those ARC's I've got to read or books on my TBR.

  5. I haven't reread a book in forever! I keep telling myself I'll reread HP but I'm stuck on the third one because it's my least favorite. I have so many books I want to reread either because I want to finish the series and don't remember what happened before or just for fun.
    Take it as a blessing you can reread because I get bored since I start remembering what happens.

  6. it is true, your favorite books will always be better than the new ones you're going to read, that's why they're your favorites. but I even I read a favorite, I don't find news books hard to like. to me, any book can become a favorite reread, I think it's a matter of your moods, I know there are certain times my mood keeps me from enjoying reading new books.

    have a lovely day.

  7. I think a really good book is one you want to reread. And I have to say, most of the new books I read, I don't want to read again. They're fine to entertain me for a few hours, but I don't feel like I want to spend more time with the characters or go back to their world, or that I would get much more out of a reread. But other books have so much to offer that reading them once is not enough!

  8. Now I`m not a big rereader, but I used to be in high-school. Being a book blogger, you`re trying to catch up with all the new releases. So often I want to reread a book, but then I think about all the new ones that are coming out. The only ones I pick up every year are the Harry Potter books.

  9. Oh my goodness, AJ! I was just discussing this with another blogger. I LOVE to reread too and I have gotten to the point where I am stressing out over really wanting to reread old favorites when I know I have tons of unread books just sitting around waiting for me to pick them up. To add to my dilemma, is that I love to read long drawn out series, so that would require investing even more time to rereading. I feel your pain girl!

  10. I've always been a rereader but I just feel I can't do that just now as I have so many unread books. I love rereading old favourites and want to do so again, eventually! I never get these book hangover things and I just go straight from one to another whether it was great, crap or brilliant reread. I don't have that hangover problem, never had.

  11. I am an extremely occasional rereader. I believe the only books I've reread are ACOTAR/ACOMAF, the Harry Potter books, and Twilight. I ended up loving my rereading experience with ACOTAR (until I read the final book and didn't like it, at least), but reading Twilight again absolutely ruined all the nostalgia I had and ended with the series being donated. :/ I can totally sympathize with your book hangovers though - I've been there! I don't blame you for not rereading!

    Tracy @ Cornerfolds

  12. I have reread only a few books--and although most people think I read a lot of books, I'm no where near you!

    This week I was in the jury pool and being questioned for a jury and was asked about books I might have read on a particular subject--I felt embarrassed (yes, embarrassed) to have to say I had dozens of books on the subject (trains, as this was a civil suit over a train accident). Yet, that's only a small part of my total library.

  13. I stopped re-reading somewhere along the way, and now mostly only re-read when I'm sharing books with my students or children. This summer I've re-read the Attolia series to prepare for the latest book, and I was struck by how unusual that is for me to do. But as a kid, I would re-read books dozens of times. This is a large part of why I remember my childhood favorites so much more clearly than books I've read as an adult. Then again, I can look at my 3rd grade class picture and name just about everybody, but I've forgotten the names of students I taught last year, so...

  14. I do a lot of re-reads through audio and the experience is a little different. I have so many review books that I don't really have time in my reading schedule to do many print re-reads. I never used to re-read books and only started doing so in recent years. I can't think of a time when a re-read caused me to have a book slump - usually they work to get me out of one.

  15. I don't reread. I don't even re-watch shows or movies. There are too many books I want to read and too little time.

  16. The only book I've actually reread is The Dark is Rising series, but not others. There is so much goodness out there, I have never regretted that. Reading your post it's clear how much you enjoy it so I saw enjoy it and don't look back!

  17. You're so me! I re-read my favorite series every month thus I end up having a massive book hangover that I neglect my TBR list.

  18. I don't re-read often but never have. Where I do it's books I want to check if they are as good as I remember.

  19. I don't re-read pretty much ever, but I was pleased to see that your issues aren't that you're hating the books you're re-reading. (I've seen lots of people who have that problem.) Hope you find a good read/re-read balance!

    Nicole @ Feed Your Fiction Addiction

  20. Oh my goodness AJ you got it! That is exactly what my problem has been these past few months!

    I've been in the midst of re-reading The Mortal Instruments and The Infernal Devices before getting to The Dark Artifices. TID is one of my favorite trilogies ever. But through this whole year so far, I haven't been incredibly excited for new releases. I mean sure, I get new releases every now and then... if you count the new edition of Harry Potter and some other special editions... otherwise all I've been getting is follow-up books!

    But I had never thought that it may be because I'm a re-reader.

    The thing is I've also been craving re-reading loads of old favorites - Eragon, Maximum Ride, Stravaganza, Illuminae... The list of what I want to re-read goes on and on!

    Blogging is as beautiful as it can be tedious - there are so many new hyped books for you to love, but that may also be a slight bit too many, which makes pressure build up...

    Amazing post! Amazing post! Amazing post!

    I might blab about it on a future blogpost of mine... of course you'll be mentioned heheh ^-^

    Have a great day AJ!

    <3 Caroline @ Just Another Bookish Blog

    1. I just realized how long my comment was hahaha sorry xD

  21. I'm actually not a huge re-reader, mainly because I keep having new books to read! The few times that I've re-read books, I actually end up quite disappointed in the old favourites, which is a whole other set of issue. Hope you find new books that are as good as your old favourites!

  22. I used to do more re-reading before I started blogging. Like you, I now have a problem of wanting to reread and yet also read all those attractive new or new-to-me books on my list. I know what you mean about some of those not living up to the old favorites! For me that hasn't been such an obstacle, but I just find it hard to fit everything in.

  23. I reread a lot, most especially when I am in a reading slump. There is nothing entirely wrong with that, though and you should reread more if it makes you happy :) and also, no one is really going to come at you with a stick if your TBR pile gets higher and higher :) I have actually stopped looking at my TBR list because it just doesn't help me at all. I am a mood reader so I almost always pick up a book that I feel like reading and not force myself to read from my TBR pile because I keep adding books to it..


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