Friday, May 7, 2010

Serial Rereading Syndrome

SRS is kind of a disease, I guess. The publishing industry is probably really pissed at me. I'm waiting for Random House to knock down my door and steal my stash of worn books. I do buy and read a lot of new stuff. But I can't help but go back to my old friends.

It's embarrassing, really. Here are a few that I must have read anywhere between 4 and 20 times—some recently, some not so recently:

The Little House books
A Wrinkle in Time
Jane Eyre
All the Austen books
LOTR trilogy and the Hobbit
The Thorn Birds
Memoirs of a Geisha
The Interpreter of Maladies

And this is the short list. It's a bit of a random mix.

Do you have SRS? Which books tempt you to read them over and ever again?


Matthew Rush said...

I read very few books more than once, but the ones I do, I read over and over and ... anyway yeah I guess that counts.

I suppose that means I have SRS, thanks for pointing that out Lydia.

Today's guest bloggers are Lisa and Laura Roecker!

Caroline Starr Rose said...

This is interesting. I posted on the exact same concept a few months ago, but I called those beloved stories comfort books. Lots of children's books are on my list, including the lovely Little House stories.

And...shhh...don't tell, but I'm the only person in the world never to have connected with A WRINKLE IN TIME.

MeganRebekah said...

I am ridiculous re-reader. Ridiculous. If I love it, odds are I've read it to the point I've memorized specific scenes. But, I think the book industry actually benefits from my, um, obsessions. There are books I've purchased multiple times, because I lost mine or a friend borrowed it or I needed it on my Kindle too.

Some overall rereads that never do me wrong:
Hunger Games series!
Anne of Green Gables series
Pride and Prejudice
Perfect Chemistry (by Simone Elkeles)
A couple series by LJ Smith

MeganRebekah said...

(and on an unrelated note -- you are my new favorite blog. how did I just now find you? where have you been hiding? keep up the awesome posts, I'm lovin' it!)

Mayowa said...

Hmnn let me see...

Gates of Fire By Stephen Pressfield: Read this almost back to back recently

Well of Ancients (Warcraft) by Richard A. Knaak: Just goes to show the total power of warcraft. Even a high falutin literary writer like meself can't get enough of it.

I wonder if there's medicine for SRS.

Jamie Grey said...

My list looks suspiciously like yours :) I also usually re-read the Harry Potter series once every couple of years. And I have some Mary Steward books that get trotted out every year. I love to re-read!

Alesa Warcan said...

Ooh yeah, SRS!
The Silmarilion and the Adventures Tom Bombadil.
The bear went over the mountain, William Kotwinkle.
Black Milk.
De la terre à la lune, Jules Vernes.
The little prince, St Exupery.

Well that was a random off of the top of my head list composed far from my bookshelves... It shows.

Come to think of it, I have a lot of books I reread every couple of years or so... Old friends I'm always happy to revisit. And some I reread aloud with my significant other.

Lindsay (a.k.a Isabella) said...

I have SRS too. I do favour the classics, and Jane Austen books I tend to re-read once a year at least.

Tina Laurel Lee said...

Wa! Never enough time! Right now I'm having problems with first times. Although when I was young, A WRINKLE IN TIME was definitely on my list.

Janet Johnson said...

Isn't that why we buy books in the first place, and not kindle files? Books can never be re-read enough in my opinion. Any L.M. Montgomery, Lloyd Alexander's Black Cauldron series, Chronicles of Narnia. Too many to name. :)

Anna said...

I try not to reread too much because there are SO many new books I want to get to - it can get overwhelming. There are some, like THE GIVER, that I can't help going back to every once in a while, though. And there are some recent books, like WHEN YOU REACH ME, that I desperately want to reread so I can see examine how they were crafted.

Taryn Tyler said...

I love to re-read books I read when I was younger and see if my reaction to it is the same (Straw Into Gold --yes. Westmark Trilogy --yes)or less enthusiastic coming from an older me. It's interesting to see how I've changed in the way I think.
I also read the Narnia books a lot.

Paul C said...

I like picking up several poetry anthologies I have and rediscovering some classic favourites. Entertaining post- like the new acronym.

Solvang Sherrie said...

I often end up rereading books because I loved them so much I have to read them to my kids: Harry Potter series, Gregor the Overlander, Hunger Games. I'm rereading Catcher in the Rye right now for me.

Talli Roland said...

I am so glad you've admitted to this, because I too am a serial reader! It's mostly my 'bedtime books' - I have to read to get to sleep but they must be the right books - nothing too exciting or scary.

Shannon O'Donnell said...

Ha ha ha! I love this! I love to re-read the Harry Potters, of course. I also adore the entire Fablehaven and Inkheart series'.

I have an award for you today, Lydia! Have a great weekend. :-)

Indigo said...

I have a leather bound edition of Edgar Allen Poe's works that gets read a lot. Then there is Shel Silverstein's books - my daughter has her own collection.

There are a few but I'm not exactly a SRS. In fact it's a rare occasion for me to pull out the old stand-by's. (Hugs)Indigo

Jemi Fraser said...

SRS - love it :)

And I've got it. My most reread series is the Hobbit/LotR. When I was a kid, it was the Anne of GG series and Nancy Drew/Hardy Boys. :)

Elle Strauss said...

I'm not much of a re-reader with the exception of Pride and Prejudice, but I haven't read it in a long time. With revisions on my wips, I spend so much time re-reading my own work--too much! That's enough re-reading for me.

Lola Sharp said...

Oh yeah! I SO have this disease.

I've read The English Patient countless times, as well as most of Austen's books, and James Joyce's Ulysses, and most of Hemingway's books. Plenty of others, but I try to curb it, because my TBR stack is taking over my bedroom.

Happy Mother's Day and weekend!

Olivia Carter said...

I love Pride & Prejudice, Anne of Green Gables, & The Mortal Instruments Series.

But there are SO MANY new books out there though I don't get back to my favs too often but I love it everytime I can!

Melissa Sarno said...

I very rarely re-read. In fact, I think there's only one (yes one!) book that I've read more than once: The Diary of Anne Frank. There are just too many books I want to read. However, I want to tell you that some of the books you have on your re-read list are my absolute favorites. I like your reading tastes :-)

Candyland said...

YES! I do this too!!! It's a baaaddd habit! And thanks for adding my contest in your sidebar:)

Anonymous said...

My SRS list is small. I keep books thinking that I'm going to read them again, but I rarely do.

Alexis said...

SRS!! Love it!
Hmmmmm, books that I read over and over include but aren't limited to:
Island of the Blue Dolphins, Black Beauty, Pride and Prejudice, Of Mice and Men and The Horse Whisperer.

Shannon said...

Hi Lydia,
Thanks for stopping by my blog. I've been checking yours out, as well. Love what you've done with the place. I'll be back!

The Alliterative Allomorph said...

Hi! thanks for stopping by my blog - and good luck in the contest!

The only book I have ever reread is called Housekeeping by Marilynne Robinson. So beautifully poetic you just want to consume very word. It's one of those books that you find yourself reading slowy as if savouring a taste! :)

Creepy Query Girl said...

I'll re-read all the harry potter books before each movie comes out

Jen said...

Don't feel bad I am an awesome re-reader and after the pages are torn and so worn I can't even read the lettering I buy a new copy because I always go back!!!

I have read the Harry Potter series over a dozen times and when the 1st installment of the 7th movie comes out I'll read the books before hand! I can't help myself!

Jonathon Arntson said...

You're kind of, like, one of the, like, coolest people I've ever seen. Like, totally!

Thanks for following my blog :P

Saumya said...

HAHA SRS! So appropriate!! I read all of Emily Giffin's books too many times and Memoirs of a Geisha!
Love your list!

Susan Fields said...

Hmmm...I can watch movies I love over and over, but I can't really say the same about books. I read Agatha Christie's And Then There Were None more than once, and I kept thinking I'd read it again if I could just forget who the bad guy is!

Lisa and Laura said...

I'm the opposite of a re-reader. Even books I absolutely love, I don't usually read again. Although there is one exception, BEACH MUSIC by Pat Conroy. Whenever I'm really down and out I read a few chapters. It's very soothing.


Wow-this is amazing. A totally original post! Didn't think it was possible in blog-land. I've NEVER thought about this before--serial rereading. GENIUS! I guess mine would be also, interestingly enough, Memoirs of a Geisha, which I think is just so incredibly well-written. I also reread the texts I teach for class, but I guess that doesn't count. I'm still a bit dumbstruck by the originality of this post. I guess not everything has been said and done!

Patricia Stoltey said...

I go back to books I read as a kid and read them again because they bring back great memories. I'm thinking of books such as The Yearling, Black Beauty, Girl of the Limberlost, etc.

Heather Dougherty said...

We have a lot in common! A Wrinkle in Time, Jane Eyre, Jane Austen novels... all are on my re-read and re-read often books!

I love to reread. I'm a super fast reader so I like to re-read books because it helps cement stuff I skim the first time.

Mohamed Mughal said...

Don't feel alone on this one, Lydia. I can't count how many times I've re-read "Slaughterhouse 5" and "The Great Gatsby."