25 thoughts on “Reader Friday: Returning to a Book

  1. I assume you mean ‘recently’ and not childhood favorites, like Huckleberry Finn, which I read many times. As a kid, I read lots of books several times because I was a fast reader and needed something other than cereal boxes.
    As an adult, which I’ve been chronologically for a long, long time, I’ve read a fair number more than once, often to catch up when a new book in the series comes out. And while you’re probably expecting much “classier” books, my ‘go-to comfort read’ was Naked in Death. As the series progresses, I enjoy going back and seeing how well everything was set up way back when (except for Roarke’s admin, who first wore ‘sensible shoes’ but in later books wore high heels). Robb established her world, introduced her main characters and I’ve enjoyed watching them grow. And watching the relationships grow.

  2. Read numerous times: Forlorn River by Zane Grey. Always loved it. Always will.

    These Is My Words by Nancy E. Turner I’ve read twice.

    Back in the days when the good Star Trek original series mass market paperbacks were coming out, there were a few titles that came out that I’ve read more than once.

    I frequently read a lot of my non-fic titles more than once.

  3. The Talisman by Stephen King and Peter Straub
    I love the adventure that this book takes you on. I have picked up on different things, and understood more of the characters personality each time I read it. It’s interesting how I picture things differently each time I read it as well!

  4. Interesting question. I’ve re-read books by three female authors: Heyer, Pargeter, Stewart. The common motif: an oppressed, or isolated, or introverted individual is approached by and eventually embraces Love.

    It’s no surprise that this same motif is part of my first novel, and features in my unpublished short stories.

  5. Probably the Lord Peter Wimsey novels by Dorothy Sayers. If I had to guess, I’d say I probably read them through about a half dozen times. I’ve also read many of the Campion mysteries (Margery Allingham) over and again. The writing and the stories are rewarding every time. The interplay between Wimsey and Bunter and between Campion and Lugg is always delightful. Wimsey’s pursuit of Harriet Vane is marvelous. And just being part of the “make-believe” world of British aristocracy between the wars is fun. I had hopes for DOWNTON ABBEY, but never could stand more than a few minutes of its soap-opera dialogue and story line.

  6. I assume we are talking fictional books or books like Dr. Suess, which I adore. I honestly cannot think of one that I’ve read more than once. I take the trip once and move on, LOL!

  7. Harrison High by John Farris. The story was so very real to me because it was out and popular while I was high school. Will likely read a couple of three more times in my lifetime.

  8. I’ve read Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy three times (not counting movies). I love the way the reader has to assemble the ‘real’ story as you read. Also, I’m rereading the Day of the Jackal right now. Now that I know something of how stories work, I get even more out of the stories that have stood the test of time.

    • Tinker Tailor – yes. Great writing, great Cold War feel. Also The Spy Who Came in from the Cold.

  9. I think I’ve reread every book in Terry Pratchett’s Discworld series, some of them countless times. The characters are real, the humour is intelligent, and most of the stories are full of adventure. I find his books easy to read, easy to digest, and full of depth – including all his comments on society and humanity.

  10. There’s one author that I re-read consistently, and that’s my favorite: Louis Bayard. Specifically, two of his historical thrillers – “Pale Blue Eye” (featuring a young E. A. Poe) and “Mr. Timothy” (featuring a twenty-something Tiny Tim). Mr Timothy is w/out a doubt my favorite book. His other historicals, “School of Night,” “The Black Tower,” and “Roosevelt’s Beast” are also very good, but I have not re-read.

    • Sometimes you completely miss an author. Thank you for mentioning Louis Bayard, how I missed him I’ll never know. I’m buying Pale Blue Eye right away. Thanks again.

  11. Just Curious by Cullen Murphy. Going on 20 years old, this collection of Atlantic essays is at times dated but always leaves me feeling smarter than I am. Great, humane writing

  12. Right now I’m re-reading American Gods, by Neil Gaiman. I’m doing so because I really liked it when I first read it (not too long after it came out), consider it one of the best books of the century so far, and because I wanted to refresh my memory of it in anticipation of the Starz adaptation. Prior to this I could not pin to a decade the last time I re-read an adult book as an adult. Like TO, when I was a kid I read my favorites over and over.

  13. I’ve got three, well, two books and one series I should say.

    Ireland by Frank Delaney,
    One of the most beautifully written stories I’ve ever read, and chock full of Irish Lore and History told the old fashioned way. The audiobook version is even more amazing as Frank Delaney, a well known Irish voice, reads it himself.

    Once An Eagle, by Anton Myrer
    An amazing story following a young hotel clerk from the midwest through a military career starting in WW1 and through the beginnings of the Vietnam War.

    The Sacketts, By Louis L’Amour
    I was mesmerized by this series as a kid. They’re the only books I ever saw my step-dad read. My favourites are the earliest stories as Barnabas Sackett leaving England and his sons building their lives in the New World.

    Each of those gets a read (or audiobook listen) at least every other year.

  14. Easy one. I’ve read Silence of the Lambs numerous times to examine it piece by piece. Over the years I’ve torn all Thomas Harris’ books apart more times than I can count. Each time I unearth another nugget of gold. He’s not the only author I do this to (Deaver, Slaughter, Lyndsey, the list goes on and on), but Silence of the Lambs is the Holy Grail of serial killer thrillers. It’s timeless.

  15. This is not a plug, but I re-read my own first suspense/thriller, ONE TENTH OF THE LAW. After a year away from that first-born fiction I was so intimately involved with it was, in many ways, like reading a new story and I found I liked it as a “new” reader. (Also, to no surprise, I found dozens of phrases and sentences I would have changed for the better.)

  16. Herman Wouk’s _The Caine Mutiny_ – the first time when I was 16, and several times since…

    Richard Brautigan’s _The Hawkline Monster_ – three times since my first encounter with the beast at 17…

    And a few John D. MacDonalds, too…

  17. In the past three months, I’ve read each of these once for pleasure, and a second time for study:

    1. Every Dead Thing by John Connolly
    2. Monster Hunter International by Larry Correia
    3. The Lions of Al-Rassan by Guy Gavriel Kay
    4. The Pillars of the Earth by Ken Follett
    5. American Gods by Neil Gaiman

    It was such an interesting trip to read this wide variety of genres and styles. Much to learn from every one of them.

  18. I recently reread Gemini by William E. Kelley. He also wrote The Godhunters. These are his only two novels. He was primarily a screenwriter (Witness). Both are fine novels.

  19. The Chinese Bandit, by Stephen Becker. This is a great masculine adventure story. I’ve read this book twice, about twenty years part.

    Also, Jack Finney’s Invasion of the Body Snatchers. I was a prisoner to this book. I couldn’t put it down. I’ve since disassembled (outlined and studied) it, to see how Finney did this to me.

    John Scalzi’s Old Man’s War. This is a science fiction story. Senior citizens are given a choice. They can remain on earth to wither and die of old age, or they can join the military and go fight the many enemies of earth. It’s very light and often humorous. I read this one a second time also to take it apart. I wanted to see how and why it works.

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