re reading

Sometimes a book is so good it stays with you forever.  So I can’t be the only person who reads books again when I’ve really enjoyed them. To relive the characters and plot. To remember the small details within the story.

I know we’d all love to be able to re-read our favourite books for the first time again. Falling in love with the characters, being shocked or memorised by the storyline. But unfortunately (at the moment) we can’t erase that memory and do it again, and even if we could, would we really want to erase the memory of reading a good book, I’m not so sure.

So for now we will all just have to stick with re-reading them again and again, with the knowledge from having previously read it. But maybe this could even be a good thing. Having previously read it may allow us to read deeper into the novel. Allow us to see things we didn’t see the first time because we were so excited to read the whole book and get to the end. A second reading of a book, may also lead us to think more about the novel’s meanings and deeper ideas, possibly forcing us (in a good way) to become better readers.

Reading a book a second (or third or even fourth) time can also offers a different emotional experience than the first time, meaning the experience of reading the book may not be at all like the first time. Scientists have even suggested that this unique emotional experience gained from re-reading a book can help us get more ‘in touch’ with ourselves.

Finally, according to a paper in the Journal of Consumer Research, books can bring back memories and emotions from previous visits. So if you read of book on a holiday that you’d like to remember, reading that particular book again can bring back memories from your visit.

So readers, I hope, like me you occasionally allow yourself to revisit an old favourite, whether it’s because you’re older now and may have deeper understanding or whether you just want to relive a piece of amazing writing.


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