Ten books I wish I could read for the first time again

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Technically speaking, any book I love and rave about should fall into that category. Unfortunately, not many books have retaining power. I find that I forget what many books are about a year or more after I raved about it. Good thing I try to review most of those books, otherwise, I'll probably be looking dazedly at the titles.

Even if I did remember what a book was about, that doesn't mean I still love the idea of that book. I have often changed my ratings of books based on what I currently feel about it. That's a fodder for a whole different post, but I feel better about doing it, because I actually prefer reviewing a book after a good amount of time has passed since I read it.

Coming back to this post's topic, I found myself perusing my read list for books I would love to read again, for the first time; and experience all that initial excitement, cleverness, wow factor, character love, and many other things that made the book make me smile even months, years after. Do you have books like that?

So without further ado, below is my list of 10 books I wish I could read all over again, simply for the amazing feel of being in the book, with notes from my review.

10. 13 rue Thérèse by Elena Mauli Shapiro: Reading this book is like solving a puzzle, like playing treasure hunt. This is a mystery, but not a mystery by any traditional definition of this genre. Instead, it almost feels like the reader is solving the puzzle.

9. The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Ann Shaffer: Some of my best passages in the book were all about reading. Any book lover will want to print out those quotes and paste them up on their work spaces or reading corners. Most of the characters spoke passionately about the books they read, much akin to what happens in book clubs (and blogs).

8. Attachments by Rainbow Rowell: The whole story is really not such a big deal. It's all predictable, and nothing shocking happens. But it's so heartwarming that I enjoyed every bit of it. It gives the same feeling as watching movies like When Harry Met Sally or You've Got Mail or many other romantic comedies does. Attachments made my list (as opposed to Eleanor and Park or Fangirl) because this is the book that got me to the Rowell club.

7. The Ocean at the End of the Lane by Neil Gaiman: [This book] has fantasy at its best. There are all sorts of inexplicable things happening - worms lodged in the feet? three people who seem to have been around since time immemorial, literally? a pond that may as well be an ocean? memories that can be easily wiped or modified? The best part is that you can read this book without questioning even one of those fantastical elements. You can ask ten questions for every strange thing mentioned, but the odds are that you won't think to ask - as a reader, I felt the same willingness to accept anything that children are bestowed with.

6. Haroun and the Sea of Stories by Salman Rushdie: [This book] felt like a whiff of lively breeze. Reading this book made me remember the joy of reading magical books like Harry Potter and The Night Circus. While not as long or as atmospheric, Haroun and the Sea of Stories deserves its own place on that shelf of fascinating fantasy books.

5. The Weird Sisters by Eleanor Brown: Along with their father, they quote Shakespeare so often that it becomes their way to express their feelings almost always. Their father is a Shakespearean professor who has inculcated in the three sisters an immense and intense love for reading. Oh, believe me when I say that you'll love these three sisters simply because they do not go anywhere without a book in hand, and will pull out one whenever they have a free minute to spare.

4. Ready Player One by Ernest Cline: [This book] celebrates geekdom like very few other books. Even now, two days later, I'm itching for a similar read. That's not to say that this book was perfect, because it did bug me at some level, but the thrill I derived from reading it far outweighs any niggles.

3. The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern: I started reading it on the train at 7 am in the morning, when I was going to New York, planning to read a couple of pages and then nap a bit. But instead, I bought a cup of coffee and spent the next couple of days reading the book at all possible opportunities.

2. Harry Potter series by J. K. Rowling: This post I wrote almost three years ago says it all.

1. Where'd You Go, Bernadette? by Maria Semple: Now here's a book I would love to read twice. I may not even mind reading any other similar books out there. When I read the synopsis of this book, it sounded very much like light women fiction to me - which I read only occasionally, usually when I am in need of a light read. In the end, this book became my favorite book from last year.

And finally, the book that inspired this post. The book that I think will squeeze itself into this list very soon.




16 comments:

rhapsodyinbooks said...

This is such a good subject because I think every book I really loved, I wished I could read over again for the first time! (although, the worse my memory gets, maybe it will be like that anyway if I reread! LOL)

bermudaonion(Kathy) said...

I agree with several books on this list. I plan to pick up Attachements next!

readingtheend said...

Oh, it would be nice to read the Harry Potter books again for the first time. I wonder what the reading experience would be like if I hadn't waited years between each book.

Juju at Tales of Whimsy.com said...

So many I need to read!

Diane D said...

Many good ones and other I want to try ---especially---

The Storied Life of A. J. Fikry

bellezza said...

What a marvelous idea for a post! I would like to read The Night Circus again,too, but I didn't feel the same about The Ocean At The End of The Lane. Somehow, while I find Gaiman's writing quite beautiful, the stories leave me cold. I know, I'm in the 1% here. I really must buy The Storied Life of A. j. Fikry.

Athira / Aths said...

I hope you enjoy that one!

Athira / Aths said...

I have reread those books quite a few times but I'm due for another reread. I always feel that fall/winter is the best time to read the Harry Potter books.

Athira / Aths said...

Yay!

Athira / Aths said...

That book is very intriguing - hope you enjoy it!

Lisa Sheppard said...

Comparing Attachments to those movies makes me think it would make a great movie! Since they're making Eleanor & Park into a movie, I wonder if they'll look at other Rowell books for movies if it's a success.

iliana said...

I loved Attachments too. I really need to read Where'd You Go Bernadette. I keep hearing such great things about it. Great list, Athira!

Vasilly said...

The Ocean at the End of the Lane and The Night Circus are two books that I want to reread again someday. Nice list.

Athira / Aths said...

Attachments will certainly be a great movie! I hope they make it.

Athira / Aths said...

I hope you will like it! It is brilliant!

Athira / Aths said...

Thank you!