So over Christmas break, I decided it was high time that I (1) reread the first six Harry Potter books, and (2) finally read the seventh.
Now I know EVERYTHING and will understand ALL THE REFERENCES YAY!
Also I still think Snape is a jerk. Not evil, no, but a jerk nonetheless. Fight me.
But after I read the books, I realized it's been a long time since I reread something. I used to reread all the time. ALL THE TIME. And then when I discovered YA and actually alive authors and began to read new releases and my TBR grew at ten times the rate it had before, I stopped rereading. Which is sad, because I during my grand HP reread, I found that I had missed the comfort that comes from revisiting old books.
So. Let's break down my research (rambling thoughts?) into a list of why rereading makes my bookwormy life so much better.
1. I learn new details that I missed before.
I have a bad memory when it comes to details and minor plot points and sometimes even major plot points. Even in my non-bookish life, I don't remember details (I inherited this from my dad, so blame him). Instead, I remember emotions and how certain situations or people made me feel. It's the same when I read a book. So every time I reread a book, something new pops up that I missed before.
2. I don't feel like I wasted money when I buy a book.
OF COURSE, seeing books on my shelf is a pretty decent use of my money. Their mere presence validates my purchase. But I'm a strong believer in getting my money's worth, so with that mindset, technically the more I read a book, the better value it becomes. This is logic because I say it is.
3. It's like revisiting old friends.
This is especially true if you have a bad memory like mine. Sometimes you want the hero to be in danger of his life and not know if they are going to survive, but sometimes you want to be able to comfortably read through the book knowing exactly how it's going to end. It's like watching Princess Bride for the seven hundredth and fifty third time. Same principle. (And don't try to deny that you haven't seen Princess Bride seven hundred and fifty three times.)
4. I get a new perspective.
The Harry Potter books are cool because if you were one of the original readers, you'd grow up with them. The first three are obviously MG, and then the switch to YA is extraordinarily clear in Goblet of Fire. When I was first reading them, this fourth book was my favorite, probably because I was 14 and related to Harry the most there. I enjoyed the rest of course, but at that point my brain was at the 14 year old level. In Order of the Phoenix, I found Harry annoying, whiny, and acting way too much of a victim when everyone was OBVIOUSLY in danger too and OBVIOUSLY doing the best for him the stupid child. I considered myself very mature at 14, if you can't tell.
During this reread, Goblet of Fire wasn't my favorite as it had been before. And though I still found Harry kind of whiny in Order of the Phoenix, I understood the reasoning behind it better. I think it's fascinating (and evidence of J. K. Rowling's skill) that the style of each book so perfectly correlates to Harry's age. It's so much fun to read them as an (amateur) adult kind of viewing it from above, rather than during childhood.
But then again, there is ONE disadvantage that I see to rereading, and that is:
I don't get to read SHINY NEW BOOKS as much.
When I was a reader of solely classics, I would reread my favorites every year or so, sometimes even more than once. But now that I've gotten into the YA world (shame on you my blogging friends! actually no i love it), I've been rereading much less. But my hiatus from the new and shiny while reading Harry Potter was so pleasant that I plan to do it more often.
And what about you? Do you reread? Or are you a one-time kind of person? What's the last book you reread? And (be honest now) how many times have you watched Princess Bride?