Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Question: What book would you love to read again for the first time?

We are reorganizing our bookshelves, and I keep stumbling across old favorites that I vividly recall reading for the first time.  I thoroughly enjoy rereading favorite books, but there is nothing quite like the first time you fall in love with a story and its characters.  That first time is full of new discoveries - dialogue that moves you to tears, characters so beautifully crafted that you ache for them when their hearts are broken and cheer for them when their dreams are realized, and pages that keep you up late reading with urgency because you simply must discover how the story ends.  As I sort through some of my old favorite books, I find myself wishing that I could read several of them for the first time all over again.  How awesome would it be to read them again with that original sense of excitement, surprise, and urgency?

For example, I still clearly remember the first time I read Pride and Prejudice, and I would absolutely love to meet Elizabeth Bennet and Mr. Darcy for the first time all over again.  Wouldn't it be wonderful to relive the moments of their first (unfavorable) impressions of one another, to feel Jane's heartbreak at not knowing whether Mr. Bingley will return, to wonder whether Mr. Wickham is trustworthy, to meet the formidable Lady Catherine de Bourgh for the first time, to thrill at the fabulously tense exchange when Elizabeth refuses Darcy's proposal, to travel to Pemberley and feel Elizabeth's sense of embarrassment at unexpectedly encountering Mr. Darcy there, and to gradually discover exactly how perfect they really are for one another?!  I would LOVE to have that experience again!  

So, what book (or books) would you love to read again for the first time?


Chachic said...

This is a pretty interesting question! I've gotten comments in the past saying "I envy you because you have the rest of the series to look forward to!" I would love to read Megan Whalen Turner's Queen's Thief series again for the first time! But since it's so full of interesting bits and pieces, I still get something new whenever I re-read the books so I guess I'm okay.

Heather said...

I think for me it would be The Time Traveller's Wife. I loved the way that story developed over time. Also, if I could read the Dark Tower series by Stephen King all over again I would. I read all 3000+ pages in an 8 week period a couple of years ago and I loved it!

Violet said...

Chachic - I sometimes feel envious when I talk to other readers who are just picking up Cassandra Clare's or Tamora Pierce's books for the first time. Love your choice of The Queen's Thief series. Reading that series again without knowing what twists are on the way would be great fun! :) I also agree that rereads can be just as interesting in their own way because there are so many little details to enhance the story and characters when you aren't caught up in rush of the adventure the first time through.

Heather - The Time Traveler's Wife would be a wonderful book to read for the first time again. That story definitely has a different tone once you know how everything will eventually unfold. I have never read Stephen King's Dark Tower series, so I'll have to check that out sometime soon. :)

Lale said...

Someone mentioned Tammy P before me?! I'd definitely pick Alanna: The First Adventure- it was what started my obsession with Ms. Pierce, girl power, and fantasy. Oh, and fencing. :)

Violet said...

Lale - I love Alanna! The Lioness books were my first introduction to the wonderful world of Tortall, and that series will always have a place on my 'most treasured' bookshelf. Also, George Cooper is still among my top fictional crushes of all-time. ;)

Chelle said...

Oh, to read P&P with virgin eyes again! I remember thinking Darcy was such a douche and Wickham was the man! Until things became shifty of course and then I cried with Lizzy and oo'ed and ahh'ed over Darcy. I watched Jane Eyre (2006) before reading the book and luckily reading the book was still magical considering I knew the big twist. When I was a kid I could never remember the endings to stories. Like I couldn't remember the twist in Star Wars and was always shocked when Darth was Luke's dad...hehe. But you're right, the first reads are always the funnest.

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