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Monday, November 26, 2012

Second Time Around



Do you reread books? My “keeper” shelf is for just that reason and it is so loaded. There are books that I have to keep. A story will grab me the first time and I’m so reluctant to let it go that sometimes I’ll reread the book right away. I can get so engrossed in the action, so impatient to find out what happens that I tend to miss things. Or the ending (usually in mysteries and suspense) is such a surprise that I have to start over to find the clues.

Why do we read a book we’ve already read when we have hundreds of books on our To Be Read pile? (I don’t know about you, but my TBR pile is so high it's toppling over.) I mean, we know the ending. So what is it that makes a book so compelling? 

Is it the story itself? A fascinating take on an old theme. A twist to a plot we’ve seen hundreds of times. A unique point of view. Or is it the characters? Characters so well written that they become “real”. Perhaps that’s one of the reasons sequels do well. We don’t want to let go of those characters and must find out what happens next in their lives.

Or is the reason we reread books something illusive? A combination of so many things—plot, characters, setting, atmosphere, humor, pathos, whatever—it’s hard to distinguish the elements that make that book too good to leave alone.

Now for a twist. Have you ever reread a story years later and wondered what you ever saw in it?


Next week, I will be blogging early to celebrate the launch of my latest book The Pilot. Come on back here next Sunday, December 2nd to read an excerpt from The Pilot and check out the stops along the “The Pilot Launch Tour” route.

12 comments:

  1. My bookshelf sags too because I keep books that meant something to me whether I read them in the 70's or yesterday. It's all about the characters for me and how they became alive in 'my world'. When I need to visit with them again, I'll reread their stories. Thankfully love never goes out of style.
    Congrats Diane on the upcoming new release! WTG!

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  2. Great post, Diane. My keeper shelf overflows with treasures and now my Kindle is getting "heavy", too.

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    1. I should have mentioned my Kindle. At least, Hubs can't see how many books are there. LOL

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  3. I have 4 bookshelves that are overflowing with keepers. I still have the very first romance book I ever read and I still love it. It was Once in Paris by Diana Palmer. I do reread books and only once or twice have I found one and wondered why I kept it.

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    1. Thanks for sharing, Mary. My mom hung onto Nora Roberts' Irish Thoroughbred. Nora's 1st book and Mom's 1st romance. She reread it often.

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  4. The characters, the events, the descriptions. The story. All good reasons to re-read books. Like most of you, it's my iPad, read Kindle app, that's getting overloaded too.

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    1. At least with the e-readers, we have LOTS of space. LOL

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  5. I have a keeper shelf, but I rarely reread the entire book. (There are exceptions. To Kill a Mocking Bird is one I reread recently, and no, I didn't wonder what I saw in it the first time, I marveled at how timeless the story is.) I often use my "keepers" to remind me of what made the pacing so great, or how that writer handled dialog tags, description, or tension.

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    1. With my favorites, I start out trying to pay attention to the pacing, etc. and I'll get caught up in the story & forget. :)

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  6. I used to reread books but not so much anymore, probably because of the TBR bookshelves and overloaded Kindle!! But there are a number of books by favorite authors that I keep because I hope to have time to read them again someday. I love those books so much I would hate to have to let them go. I guess it's the characters and just the story itself that touched me in some way that left a memory and so it goes onto the keeper shelf, which is also overflowing. I love the Kindle because it lets me try newer authors that I might not otherwise find their books. Ah well, there are worse vices.

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    1. I remember seeing that picture of your overflowing shelves earlier this year. LOL I agree abt the Kindle & new authors. I've found some really worth following.

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