I’ve always been a reader who regularly rereads favorite books. At least once a year I pull out my copy of “Death on the Nile” by Agatha Christie and my equally tattered copy of Jane Austen’s “Pride and Prejudice.” These well-worn and beloved books have yellowing pages, cracked spines, and are as wrinkled as a shar-pei puppy. Don’t care. I love these books — although I may have to concede and treat myself to new copies.
Reaching for a favorite book to reread is comforting. A chance to escape the doldrums of daily life and venture into a different world to visit old friends. Isn’t that what our favorite literary characters are? Old friends? I think so.
I’m right there on the Karnak with Hercule Poirot sailing down the Nile. Of course after reading the book dozens of times, I know who the victim will be and who the murderer is, but it doesn’t stop me from rereading “Death on the Nile.” I pick it up time and time again, because of Poirot and the other characters as well as the setting and Christie’s distinctive voice.
Beyond rereading individual books, I have several series I also enjoy reading over and over. It takes a bit more time to reread a series, but I still find it immersive and as enjoyable as the first time I read the books. My top favorite book series I love to reread are:
- Harry Potter by J.K. Rowling (have read the series a total of 13 times)
- The Gone Series by Michael Grant (have read series 7 times)
- The Starcrossed Series by Josephine Angelini (have read series 5 times)
- Sign of Seven Trilogy by Nora Roberts (have read series 6 times)
The latter two actually are trilogies but I still consider them a series. I’ve also reread the Star Wars X-Wing series three or four times — it’s my favorite set of books in the Star Wars Expanded Universe.
So why all this rereading when there are so many amazing new books out there to discover? In one word: characters. It’s the characters for me. Each of these series has characters I love to love and that I love to hate. From their witty dialogue to the way they deeply feel, how they lead, and their flaws that make them believable, the characters in these books series leap from the pages and stay with me long after the last page has been read.
Someday, I hope I can create characters that resonate with readers the way the ones in my favorite book series resonate for me.
What’s your favorite book or book series to reread? I’d love to know so go ahead and share it in the comment section below. Maybe you’ll help me find my next book series to read, love, and reread.