The Joys of Rereading

Once upon a time there was a monkey who loved to reread. But as the monkey grew into a great ape, she began to feel like she had to devour all the other books (and bananas) in the world that she had not yet laid her hairy hands on. If she wanted to get to the top of the TBR Tower, there would be no time for diversions into Lands of Reading Past. However, as time went on, she began to get reader fatigue and was plagued by incessant slumps. The BIG BOOK DRAGON lurking in the back of her mind began to stir- “what about all the treasure troves of books you’ve read in the past?” She realised that her longing for magical worlds could only be sated by revisiting some of the old books she’d neglected. So the great ape got off her high horse, put the fears of the towering TBR out of her mind and picked up a series she knew she already loved. And she lived happily, bookishly after (until the next bookworm crisis). The End.

Okay, that was admittedly a very silly opening, but you get the idea, I’m here today to talk about why I love to reread books. Let’s get into the JOYS OF REREADING!

thoughts orangutan

carry onYou get to relive all your favourite memories! I mean, that’s one of the most obvious reasons to reread. I have to admit that sometimes I finish a really *amazing* book, like Carry On, and I have to flip back to my favourite parts and reread them straight away. It’s almost like a compulsion to get all the feels all over again!


hug a bookRereading a beloved book is like greeting an old friend– you get wrapped up in the embrace of familiarity. It’s easy to fall into step with a favourite novel, because you know exactly how it’s going to make you feel. You know which parts will make you laugh and which will make you cry. And sometimes that predictability can be a good thing.


chill slothBecause it’s incredibly relaxing to revisit something where you’re not fretting too much about how things turn out. Favourite books are like comfort food- there’s something heartening about them- like a snuggly jumper or a hot bowl of chicken soup (yes, that’s my comfort food 😉 ). It’s such a great way to destress as well if you’ve got a lot on your plate.

happy-runningIt’s also a fabulous way to get over a slump, because SLUMPS ARE FOR CHUMPS and we all want to get back on that reading horse as soon as possible. Sometimes just reading something we’ve read before can help. I’ve often found when I’m really struggling, I’ll go back to an old favourite and just whizzing through it will make me feel like I’m back on track. Then I get to feel like a CHAMPION!! (well, sort of 😉 )

1984 bookAnd sometimes you might learn something new into the bargain! Some books, like 1984, are endlessly complex. And no matter how many times I say “oh it’s too dark, I won’t read it again”, I know there is so much more to learn there that I will certainly *have to* read it again in the future. Plus, on the same note, though this isn’t the most joyful reason, if you need to do an exam on a book, there’s no revision as good as reading it and then reading it again and again…

rememberAnother huge positive is you might have forgotten most of it. Then it’ll be like reading it fresh! Sometimes I reread books and it gives me that “ah I remember why I fell in love with this in the first place” feeling. Given that you’ve read it and loved it before, there’s a solid chance the second time will be just as impactful. And if not, you might learn something new about yourself.


pride and prejudicePlus, you might even change your mind about how you feel about a book you didn’t like. Obviously, the danger of reading a book you did like is that you might not like it as much, but the MASSIVE PRO of rereading a book you didn’t like is you might change your mind. There’s always going to be books that we try at the wrong time or couldn’t get into when we first read them. For me, that was Pride and Prejudice– but I was so grateful to be set this for A Level because it made me give it another shot- and you know what? Now I love it! There are definitely other books in the world that I would love to reassess and give them a shot at a higher rating 😀

And that’s all for now- how do you feel about rereading? Yay or nay? Let me know in the comments!


132 thoughts on “The Joys of Rereading

  1. bookbeachbunny says:

    Agree on all your points! Just started rereading some of my old favorites in the past year and it’s fun to see how much you change over time and how much life changes you. And I think it has improved my reading otherwise. 🙂
    Plus when life is stressful it’s a good fallback to revisit those old favorites that still bring you comfort without worrying about all the new stuff you aren’t reading!

    Liked by 2 people

  2. daleydowning says:

    DEFINITELY yes to getting out of a slump and forgetting stuff! I’m re-reading one right now that I only read for the first time about 3 or 4 years ago, and I’d forgotten so many parts! It’s almost like reading a brand new title! 😀

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Vera says:

    I tend not to re-read fiction. 🙈 I am sometimes a little scared I won’t enjoy it again, partially because I am no more the person I was when I read it for the first time… 😂
    I do re-read non fiction though. 😊

    Liked by 2 people

  4. MichaelK says:

    I don’t generally reread (with a few exceptions) partly because of the reason you mention (there is more to it of course). The points you raise are solid and well based and of it was just a matter of logic I would totally agree with you.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Satou Johns says:

    Those are some really good reasons to reread a book! I have wanted to but the list of books that I want to read is more than the list to reread!

    I still want to read 1984 for its darkness and I want to read Carry On because of Fangirl and its connection! ❤

    Thank you for sharing such valid reasons to reread books! ❤ I cannot imagine reliving all those good memories ❤

    Liked by 2 people

  6. ofmariaantonia says:

    I absolutely LOVE to reread books. And it’s so true that with a really good book, you will be able to get more out of it the second, third, fourth time around.

    I’ve also learned not to worry too much about all the fresh, unread books on my TBR. I’ve found most of them (when I do read them) are common-place and forgettable. If I get to read them, fine.

    I will still read these books, just in case I find a diamond hidden there! (Because that’s always exciting to find another book to add to my TBRR — To Be Reread!)

    Liked by 2 people

  7. shai @ cadeunderbooks says:

    I freaking love rereading stuff (and rewatching movies and TV) for all the reasons you mentioned. Also, sometimes I notice something I never did before, little background things or foreshadowing. And I LOVE to rewatch something when I introduce it to someone. It’s just UGH I LOVE STUFF and I want other people to maybe love it too if it strikes their fancy!!

    Liked by 2 people

    • theorangutanlibrarian says:

      I’m the same (and yes to rewatching everything too!) Absolutely agree with you there- I love spotting new things in old books 😀 So agree!! I love to do that too!! I’m always trying to push my favourite shows and movies and the best way to do that is to rewatch it with people 😉

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Jina Bazzar says:

    that opening described me perfectly!
    I seldom reread a book – there are so many others ahead. but then, like you, i just can’t seem to find the next one to satisfy me, and so i browse through the old ones – or pick up the next Nora Roberts.
    Aside from pride and prejudice and carry on, what series do you go back to?

    Liked by 2 people

  9. Suziey Bravo says:

    Loving this post! I reread all the time haha. I feel a little guilty sometimes but whatever lol. I get a kick out of revisiting some of my favorite stories. And then of course there are the books that I do not remember at all so I go back and reread them lol. Did I mention I reread a lot haha. My poor TBR lol

    Liked by 2 people

  10. tumbling into wonderland says:

    What a wonderful post, I agree with so much of this. I don’t usually re-read but I’m currently in a bit of a reading slump so I’ve picked up one of my favourites. I completely forgot about Carry On! I think that might have to be a summer re-read.

    Liked by 2 people

  11. thebookwormdrinketh says:

    I definitely agree with these! (sadly “Carry on” is still in that monster TBR pile for me. But the point still stands!) I always feel so guilty when I go back to Re-read though!! I definitely need to go back though.. Maybe I’ll add a new day to my posts… Mondays can be “Ghosts of Books Loved Passed” lol!! Whenever I make it something for my blog I don’t feel AS guilty… 😂😂😉

    Liked by 2 people

  12. thegreentealibrarian says:

    I totally agree, Slumps are for Chumps! LOL
    I love rereading books, a big factor in my ratings is whether or not I think I’ll reread it. My five star books on Goodreads are mostly books I’ve reread and loved still.
    Like you say I’ve had instances with rereading books and not liking them as much. Those are rare experiences, thank goodness.
    There have been a couple times where I’ve liked a book much more the second time I read it or at least appreciated it more. I massively disliked The Song of Achilles the first time I tried to read it, could not understand the hype but then years later I reread it and loved it. I could not understand what my problem was the first time.
    There are books I tend to reread yearly (Harry Potter) and others I haven’t read in years that I want to revisit.
    I’m also a speed reader so I tend to forget most of a book a few days after I’ve finished it. I remember a book much better if I’ve read it multiple times. (I had to do that for my essays in school.) (It’s also why I have to review the books I finish fairly quickly.)

    Liked by 2 people

    • theorangutanlibrarian says:

      hehee glad you think so 😉 I totally get that- I think I would happily reread most 5 star books (unless it was emotionally scarring 😉 ) Totally get that though.
      And yes i totally get that! That’s really interesting (I really enjoyed that book)
      And I really get that- I used to reread it yearly too, but I only reread it recently after a really long time. Totally get what you mean there!


  13. 5171 Miles Book Blog says:

    This post makes me so happy. I’ve been contemplating re-reading a few books, but as always, that TBR is the monkey on my back (ha) and I choose to read something new instead. Thanks for the encouragement to revisit some of my most-loved novels. -Ashley

    Liked by 2 people

  14. Bookstooge says:

    I’m a huge fan of re-reading. I’d been off and on re-reading for years but about 3-4 years ago I began seriously re-reading and working re-reads into my regular rotation. It has been working out really good so far 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  15. Lark @ The Bookwyrm's Hoard says:

    Good points, all of them. I reread a lot — often around half my reading for a given year are books I’ve read before. (I also read a lot, so I’m still getting through a fair number of books I’ve never read before.) I find it relaxing and comforting, like spending time with a good friend or curling up with a mug of tea and a cozy blanket.

    Liked by 2 people

  16. Tamika @paperback & flick chick says:

    I am a big ambassador for rereading! I think its great. Getting to feel all those emotions again and its kind of like going to a safe place. If you Don’t have a way to get new books it also allows you to still experience the joy of reading. I also like to reread the books in a series before the new one comes out so everything is fresh in my mind!

    Liked by 1 person

  17. Edmark M. Law says:

    It has been said that books are like mirrors. So, as you accumulate more knowledges and experiences over the years, I’m sure you would discover new things from the books you’re rereading that you haven’t found and realized before.

    Liked by 2 people

  18. The Cozy Pages says:

    I’m currently stuck in that ‘but I have too much to read’ zone and feel like I can’t reread. But that has to change. ai want to reread HP. I want to reread Night Circus. I want to reread some Austen. I want to reread anything that I really loved. I’ve just got to make the time.
    I love your post. it’s giving me incentive to reread. lol

    Liked by 1 person

  19. Sahi says:

    This post is totally for me… I agree with every single word… 😍😍😍
    I reread favorites so many times that I’ve memorized the lines and lost count of how many times I have read them 😊😊😊
    Thank you for writing this post 👍👍👍

    Liked by 1 person

  20. Maddie A. says:

    I agree with all of these! One of the reasons I reread books is because I find it very relaxing. I know what’s going to happen in the book so there wouldn’t be any surprises and I don’t have to stress about who is or isn’t going to die haha
    And like you said, sometimes we find something new that we might’ve missed the first time 🙂
    Great post!

    Liked by 2 people

  21. Joelendil says:

    As C.S. Lewis said, “I can’t imagine a man really enjoying a book and reading it only once.” Personally, I don’t consider a book a favorite unless I’ve reread it at least once (usually more times)

    Liked by 2 people

  22. thisisoneforthebooks says:

    YES you are spot on! Rereading is like visiting an old friend; it’s just like home in a way you can’t describe. And sometimes when I reread, I catch things that I missed the other time/s so although it’s familiar, it’s also new at the same time! 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  23. Winged Cynic says:

    I LOVE THIS POST. I am the biggest advocate when it comes to re-reading, and although it’s one of the primary reasons why I don’t get to my TBR as often as others, I find it fulfilling for the reasons you state above. Particularly the one where you come to change your mind about a book you hated; my comprehension skills were rather poor when I was a child, so most of my favorite books were actually those I initially hated, but came to love as a result of re-reading. So yeah, love this post. 😉 Great discussion!! ❤

    Liked by 2 people

    • theorangutanlibrarian says:

      Thank you so much! And I completely get that and agree!! And absolutely!! That’s awesome that your favourites came out of books you initially hated! I always live in hope that learning more about books will “unlock” things in books I have tried and haven’t loved. Thank you! ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  24. Madam Mim says:

    Definitely agree! I must have read some books ten or twenty times over the years, and you’re so right, I always see something new, and it’s comforting. It’s always the old favourites I go back to: Northern Lights, Pride & Prejudice, Chocolat…

    Liked by 2 people

  25. timesmightidont says:

    The late John Mortimer (he wrote the script for the TV serial of ‘Brideshead Revisited’) would only take books with him on holiday which were old favourites. See also George Orwell on ‘good-bad literature’.

    Liked by 2 people

  26. Carrie says:

    It’s very rare for me to re-read but not because I wouldn’t enjoy it but because of all those other books out there clamoring for attention but you are spot on with your reasons for enjoying to do so. 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  27. talkchatter says:

    I re read quite a bit. I think people should revisit books, films and music as time goes on. You can pick up things yo didn’t the first time, be reminded of a good time/memory, see how you’ve developed since last you visited.

    Liked by 2 people

  28. The Reading Hobbit says:

    Oh, man yeah all of this! When I was a teenager I never reread books mostly because I was just too impatient? For some reason I needed the unknown plot to get me to read a book, but these days I absolutely love rereading and rereading and rereading my fav’s


  29. Nel says:

    Man, my reread game is bad. But you make a good point and maybe that’s what I should do. I’m not exactly in a slump but I can’t decide what exactly I’m trying to read either. I know it can’t be longer than like 300 pages right now. I’m kind of wishing there was like a book series that was like Grey’s Anatomy, hahaha. Anyway, great post! I normally aavoid rereading like the plague but I’m thinking I should after this post. Also, chicken soup is a great comfort food! Any noodle soup really 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  30. forgedinink says:

    I rarely re-read books due to your last point what if I don’t like them as much the second time around? I especially feel this way about books I read many years ago. I’m at a different point in my life now and I’m afraid re-reading them will tarnish what they mean to me. But maybe…one day I can get over my fears and reap the joys of re-reading!

    Liked by 2 people

  31. thepaperbackpiano says:

    One of my bookish resolutions this year was to reread more of my old favourites, for a lot of the reasons you’ve listed here! The TBR tower is always looming and very scary but sometimes you just need a comfort read! 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  32. Beth (Reading Every Night) says:

    Oh I love re-reading, and actually I’m making it a goal of mine to re-read more this year. 🙂 The main reason is that it gives me a chance to relive my favourite memories, if you love a book enough there’s nothing better than going back and re-reading it all over again (many many times right?) 😀
    When I re-read I’m actually a little surprised by how much I have forgotten, sometimes it’s like reading it for the first time all over again.
    Great post. 🙂 ❤

    Liked by 2 people

  33. piotrek says:

    Yes! This post could almost be about me, or, to be precise, I’m slowly getting there 🙂 The shameful thing is, I’ve actually intensified my re-reading since Goodreads made it easy to rate a book multiple times, I concentrate on my stats way too much 😉

    Liked by 2 people

  34. Nicole says:

    I love re-reading books! I have a keeper-shelf of books that I re-read about every other year, and more still that I keep because “someday” I will want to re-read them. Though there are other books that I’ve pretty much set on a “keep but don’t re-read” shelf because I love them and yet and afraid they haven’t aged well and I won’t like them now… but I just can’t bear to get rid if them.

    Liked by 2 people

  35. klkranesya says:

    I like you’re suggestion about re-reading to get out of a reading slump. At first it seemed counter-intuitive, but once you explained it I could see how that might work. I don’t re-read books often. It is a rare, rare thing for me, mostly because I relate to your first part of the blog talking about how you used to think about your giant TBR. (That was a really cute opening btw. I liked it.) I feel like there are so many new books to read, I just don’t have time to re-read old ones (at least not intentionally). That said…perhaps I’ll stick an old book in my TBR pile just for fun. Thanks for the post!

    Liked by 2 people

  36. failingatwriting says:

    I really relate to this! Especially with books I read a long time ago at a younger age. My experience reading Catcher in the Rye was completely different between high school and college. It almost seemed like two different books. I think if i read it now, a few years out of college, it would open up new meaning again.( Although if I’m honest most of my rereading energy goes to Harry Potter.)

    Liked by 2 people

  37. Lunar Luci says:

    I’m all yay for rereading! I do a lot of it (and I don’t ever remember anything that happens so it’s almost a new book for me every time! :D), and I know my boyfriend rereads a lot of Discworld. To him, that’s just.. Coming home (I’m on my way! I am almost halfway through the entire series!)

    Liked by 2 people

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