Rereads?? It is folly, not with 10,000 books waiting to be read should you reread…

Or should you??  Today I’m looking at the September meme from the Classics Club which is as follows:

Rereading a favourite classic at different stages of your life gives you different insights with each reading. Is there one classic you’ve read several times that also tells a story about you?

I like this question.  It made me really think.  I’m not totally sure whether I came up with anything revealing but here goes…

I’ve read a few books more than once or even more than twice.  I’ve certainly read Rebecca a number of times and also a few of Austen’s and Dicken’s works but I’m not going to use one of those as examples because I think I only had a few years in between each reading.  I did read Lord of the Rings when I was about 15 and apart from the fact that I loved the story and the writing I also had a total girly crush on Aragorn –  although according to the book he’s not exactly easy on the eye.  I don’t care, he’s a ranger and he’s hot (in my mind).  I then reread this very recently as a group readalong and I think if anything I actually liked it more.  I don’t know whether that’s anything to do with the age difference, the fact that I just love the story or because I’ve watched the films (quite a few times).  Yes, I still liked Aragorn – and you can all go swooning over Legolas in the movie but Viggo Mortensen is my favourite, but I think I enjoyed the writing a lot more this time and the dialogue – which the film has kept surprising close to!

I think when I originally read this I was hooked on the adventure, and, as I mentioned I did have a bit of a crush going on.  More recently I think I was able to enjoy the quality of the writing and feel a little in awe of what Tolkien achieved.  I admit, he’s not everyone’s cup of tea.  I read one blogger, who was not a fan, saying ‘if you like to read a description of every leaf on the tree then give it a go’.  Now, I wouldn’t necessarily agree with that but, and even as a fan, I can see where that person is coming from and I appreciate description isn’t for everyone.  But, reading this again a few years later certainly didn’t detract from the experience for me.  I also think I took my time a little bit more, admittedly that could simply be due to the fact that I wasn’t racing to the end to see how things wound up or it could be because I’m more patient now!  Even if I’m not more patient I think the real difference is that I’m more prepared to read into things now than when I was younger when I was much more about the swashbuckling, swords and sorcery.

Did this have any lessons for me?  I think I could appreciate Gandalf’s words of wisdom more this time around – particularly in relation to the fact that Bilbo had shown Gollum pity rather than killing him when he had the chance – he after all plays a big part in the journey.  So perhaps the lesson is ‘fools rush in…etc, etc’!

Which leads on perfectly to one of my favourite lines:

“Fool of a Took, throw yourself in next time and rid us of your stupidity!”

20 Responses to “Rereads?? It is folly, not with 10,000 books waiting to be read should you reread…”

  1. Genki Jason

    I don’t think I’d reread anything other than Haruki Murakami and maybe some short stories by Lovecraft/MR James and Banana Yoshimoto. Too much to do, too much to read.

    I recently tried watching the LotR films and noticed Gandalf was constantly saying “Fool of a Took” all of time when speaking to those hobbits. I felt sorry for them before they did something dumb like alerting a cave full of orcs.

    • lynnsbooks

      Peregrin Took – knocking a skeleton down a well, followed by the bucket and the chain all ricocheting off the well’s walls! Only woke up about 10,000 orcs – a mere bagatelle, Legolas could probably have taken them all on by himself.

      I was thinking of you the other day btw. Having problems with my IT and talking to the IT guy who had just returned from a holiday in Japan. Said he loved it! He’s also learning the language. Was telling me all sorts about his hols whilst trying to solve my problem on the PC.

      Lynn 😀

  2. nikki / click clack gorilla

    Oooh yeah, Team Viggo right here. I have been wanting to reread these for a while now. I have seen the movies so many times in recent years, I feel like I need to get back to the roots so to say.

    • lynnsbooks

      What I found really good about the reread was the fact that so much of the film is taken literally word for word from the book. There are a couple of changes in sequence and a couple of things left out but on the whole the film pretty much stayed true and to be honest I’d forgotten how good the book is.
      Lynn 😀

  3. jessicabookworm

    Great choice Lynn! I have choose The Hobbit for my post which is scheduled for next week. Great minds clearly think a like 😛

    I really need to re-read The Lord of the Rings. As much as I loved Aragorn (or Strider as I still thought of him all the way through) my favourite character has to be Samwise. He is such an unlikely hero. If he can be brave enough then we all can 🙂

    • lynnsbooks

      Ahh, little Samwise – ‘I aint been dropping no eaves Mr Frodo’.
      I look forward to reading your post about the Hobbit.
      Lynn 😀

  4. Tanya

    I reread books ALL the time. Every time I’m in a slump, I pick up a book I know I love and bury myself in it. It’s unbelievably comforting. Sure, I moan and groan about how my TBR pile grows by ten every time I knock one off, but the pleasure I get from rereading and discovering things I missed the first time around and falling even more deeply in love with my favourite characters isn’t something I’m willing to give up on.

    And I totally agree with the different-stages-different-insights thing. 🙂

    • lynnsbooks

      So, what’s your most read book then, as a matter of curiosity??

      • Tanya

        Childhood favourites, for the most part. Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban probably tops the list. On days I need a pick-me-up, I turn to The Little Prince. Or Princess Bride. Or Matilda. The Bartimaeus trilogy never fails to tickle my funny bone. And every once in a while, I’ll pick up some Sherlock Holmes. 🙂

      • lynnsbooks

        I must admit a love Sherlock Holmes. I should really give them a reread. And, I think the Prisoner of Azkaban is my favourite from the Harry Potter books.
        Lynn 😀

  5. Brona

    I’ve also read LOTR trilogy twice. And you’re right – the first time, you tend to race through it to find out what happens (I was about 18 or 19 and also had a girly crush on Strider!)
    My second reading was much more leisurely, although I was rereading it just before the movie came out as I wanted to have the details fresh in my mind. Second time around I fell in love with the Ents big time…and consequently was sooooooo disappointed by how they were portrayed in the movie 😦

    • lynnsbooks

      Thank goodness I’m not the only one. The Ents were the only thing that I found disappointing in the whole film. They seemed to lack substance and the idea of having the actor who played Gimli doing the voice over just seemed silly because it was clearly him!
      Lynn ;D

  6. Risa

    Oh! I am so over due for a Lord of the Rings re-read! I’ve been meaning to do so any time these past two or three years!…I had my first taste of this book when I was around 18 or 19. At the time I was not big on descriptive writing myself. But the story really had me hooked, and I was a fan! I’ve been thinking recently, though, that with a re-read I am bound to appreciate a great deal more than just the story…especially as I read quite a few of his other works when I was older, and could appreciate all of them for the writing, ideas and world-building.

    Nice pick, by the way! 🙂

    • lynnsbooks

      I think Tolkien is just one of those authors that I will always have a soft spot for. It’s a bit like your first true love! I will undoubtedly read this again at some point over the years and I’ll still love it and on top of that will probably get something new out of it.
      Lynn 😀

      • Risa

        That’s the greatest thing about true literary works, isn’t it? — that the more you read them the more you glean from them and are amazed by them. I love that! 😀

      • lynnsbooks

        I agree and I suppose that’s what has turned them into classics over the years. I recently reread Great Expectations and found much more depth in it than the first time round.
        Lynn 😀

  7. Wendleberry

    …Yes, I still liked Aragorn – and you can all go swooning over Legolas in the movie but Viggo Mortensen is my favourite.

    Right there with you! Aragorn > Legolas. At least in the films; i still haven’t read the books!

    • lynnsbooks

      I think he definitely wins in the book! Legolas was ‘bigged up’ a bit in the films. Don’t get me wrong, he plays a good part in the book but in the film he was practically invincible! He’s a good character though and I enjoyed his friendship with Gimli.

      Lynn 😀

  8. lynsanityfuturemd

    I hear you. Aragorn was my first love when I was 13. I’m 25 now and he still has a special place in my heart ❤ *sigh*

    • lynnsbooks

      And, he was very well cast in the movie! It’s great when the casting means that you end up loving both the book and the film character.
      Lynn 😀

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