Admittedly, at the time we were talking about rereading a chapter from a book we read over the summer so we might better discuss it in class the next day. Even so, it also made me think about rereading in the sense of the things I like to read myself.
Many book bloggers I’ve known insist that they don’t reread because they want to read the new shiny books they haven’t gotten to yet. This has always been a little strange for me because I’ve always been of the opinion that most books you read are going to be mostly disappointing—like, seriously, kudos to you reviewers who can always find something nice to say about a book, because if it were me discussing a book I disliked, I’d probably end up saying, “Well, they got all the page numbers in the right order!”
It is not much of a compliment.
Anyway, that’s me. I expect dullness and repetitiveness from the books I’m about to read, and a lot of times they prove me right.
Still, there were times when I would try to escape from the story by listening to the radio because I was bored and there was no promise of Noah or Adam in the immediate future (and they are, by the way, such sweeties). If I was reading a paper copy, I’m not sure I would finish it.
Many people I respect love this book (my best friend and sister included), but I’m having trouble seeing myself rereading this book. Definitely three stars, emotionally gratifying, and character-driven, but maybe not something into which I could reinvest my time.
I like books I can study.
Go on Tumbr—people have so much to say about Harry Potter. You could write books about the amount of worldbuilding J.K. Rowling put into that story. Actually, there are college courses offered based on the Harry Potter series! You get something new out of that series every time you read it, and that makes the story better.
Now, I don’t think my professor meant that you can’t enjoy a book you read only once. Of course you can! I can think of a lot of romance novels that would have been financial flops if that weren’t the case…
But there’s something to be said about “getting” something from a story first reads can’t provide. I mean, you wouldn’t publish the first draft of your novel, would you? Likewise, when it comes to the symbolic, thematic, and global perspectives of a book, you can’t completely explore them with just one read.
Of course, that’s not the defining character of a book. The Raven Boys isn’t the kind of book you’ll be able to discuss critically in college course someday. But at least for me, it does end up being kind of disappointing when you can determine a book’s significance before even finishing it.