Have you ever re-read a book that was your childhood favourite? What was the experience like?
I recently re-read some of my child hood favourites and it was a strange experience - some stand the test of time while others left me disappointed!
Harry Potter. Its really good to re-read a book because, for me, it made me understand things a lot better and was excited when I found certain clues in one book that was crucial to the future books. Its also the same method you would use when studying for an exam.
I have read Tom Sawyer many times during my youth and adulthood. Each time, because of the length of time between readings, it's like reading it for the first time. Reaction to some of the verbage and happenings changes, but the excitement remains the same.
As a child in school, I remember reading The Diary of Anne Frank. My comparatively idyllic childhood did not allow me to relate to Anne Frank's horrific experiences. In other words, it did not feel real to me and, shamefully, did not impact me on a personal level.
Several years ago, I re-read the true story and was engrossed by the innocence and perserverence of this brave, young girl. I was able to imagine how she felt, as an adolescent, hiding from scary, threatening, but unknown evil. At the end of her journey, I was reduced to sobbing and great disgust and shame at the callous, inhumane, blinding cruelty inflicted on a populace of human beings by other human beings. In the afterwords at the end of the book, I can still visualize the description of children waiting outside all day in the cold rain for their turn in the concentration camp showers and the building where fires burned the remains around the clock. Anne, in her innocence, said to the others at the windows, watching the lines of freezing, innocent children, "Look, look at their eyes". I still cry everytime I think of it.
I don't like reading a book twice. Mainly because I don't want to loose that feeling I had when I read it for the first time. I really get involve with the books I read, and the second time it just doesn't seem so exciting......
I've re-read several books from my childhood. In most cases it was a positive experience. I can only think of one instance where I read a book I loved as a child and was disappointed. I guess what I had remembered the most from that book was the pictures and the story wasn't all that interesting.
I loved "Misty of Chincoteague" as a child and even wrote the author, Marguerite Henry, a fan letter. I was over the moon when she actually replied! The copy I read back then was from the public library. A few years ago I came across a copy at a thrift store and snatched it up. Read it that night and was still as enchanted by it then as I had been as a child.
The Nancy Drew series was also a childhood favorite. Every few years I'll re-read the early ones and (so far) have never tired of them or found them "too childish".
Re-reading a favorite, well-written book from childhood instantly transports me back to one of the few happy times I had during that period of my life.
I re-read them all the time! Some are out of print, but because of recent technology, have become available again. I've even been able to buy some. I HIGHLY recommend doing this!
I was an adult when Harry Potter came out, but I found in re-reading them, I picked up nuances I didn't find the first time through. For instance, in the 3rd book, Professor Lupin made a fool of Professor Snape when he had Neville Longbottom dress up his boggart in his grandmother's clothes. Later, when Lupin was sick and Snape acted as substitute teacher, he enacted revenge by having the students go to the back of the book to study werewolves, nearly revealing Lupin's identity. The first time I read the book, I thought Snape was merely being obnoxious by having the students go to the back of the book.
Reading during childhood helped me create memories I otherwise would not have had. Re-reading those books helps me to relive those memories.
by Jim Higgins 8 years ago
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