Why did I Read that Book?

Over the last few weeks I have been re-watching Alias. When I hit the second season and many of my favourite Vaughn and Sydney moments I remembered an old Roswell fic I’d loved with a small crossover into Alias. I couldn’t get it out of my head, so for the last two days I’ve been rereading the fic. It got me thinking about why I read what I read.

Why I read new to me books
Most new books I read because I love the author, they were recommended by a friend, or I’m curious about the source material for a movie or TV show. Sometimes I find a review online through goodreads or amazon, but for the most part I prefer recommendations from people I know in real life.

Why I reread old favourites
I don’t reread a lot of books. Partially I think this is because there is only so much time and there are so many good books to read. It also boils down to if I am going to reread a book I have to really love it.

Very occasionally I will reread a book because the final book in a series is coming out and I want to review everything that happened. A perfect example of this is the year the final Harry Potter came out. I spent almost a month before it was released rereading the entire series. More often than not I will find a summary of the previous books online to refresh my memory before diving into the newest installment.

When I bought my first ebook reader I remember wanting the first book I read on it to be something I loved. I reread “Pride and Prejudice” by Jane Austen because it is a deceptively complex classic love story. I love how after you’ve read it the first time you can see how precisely she sets up the different plot points in advance.

When my father died, a few years ago, I struggled to get back to reading. I pulled out some of my old favourites and skimmed through them only reading the ‘good’ bits. Books like “The Last Dragonlord” by Joanne Bertin, and even the first Rowell book by Melinda Metz. I also binge watched several seasons of “How I met your Mother” including the episode where Marshall’s father dies.

Sometimes I will reread books because something reminds me of them, like the Roswell fic I’m rereading because of the Alias crossover. When this season of Bitten, the TV show is over I will likely go back and reread the book by Kelley Armstrong to get the story straight in my head again. I sometimes pull out Harry Potter because I want something fast, easy, and satisfying. I have books I rely on when I’m sad, and books I rely on when I can’t sleep.

How do you decide what books to read? Do you ever reread books? What makes you pick up a book for a second time?


4 thoughts on “Why did I Read that Book?

  1. categaragan March 14, 2016 / 9:44 am

    When I’m really stressed out I reread books. I find it helpful to retreat to a familiar place with loved characters. When I was in university you could always tell when exams were by the height of the book pile beside my bed (none of which were what I was supposed to be studying). Now I rarely reread books because the pile of books I haven’t read yet, but want to read, has gotten so high.


    • NJ Fraser March 14, 2016 / 10:09 am

      I can see that. Lately new books don’t appeal. I have been rewatching and rereading rather than trying new media. I seem to go through phases.

      Right now I’m a little over whelmed so I’m sticking with things I know I’ll enjoy. When things calm down I’ll probably start reading new books again.


  2. Katherine Jay March 14, 2016 / 11:02 am

    I reread books when I need to visit with familiar old friends – when I’m stressed, or unhappy, or just in need of comfort. Knowing how a reread ends helps, too, if I’m in a comfort-needing place. Sometimes I’m just not in a good place for reading something that has the potential to worsen my mood. A reread helps me to match what I need in a book to my current emotional state. You can’t do that with a new book, because it’s new and untried.


    • NJ Fraser March 15, 2016 / 8:00 am

      I think you hit the nail on the head for rereading. It is all tied to emotion and as you said when you know how a book ends you know if it fits. Reading something new is a gamble. It doesn’t always go the way you think it will. Glad I’m not the only one who sometimes turns to a book for security and comfort.

      Liked by 1 person

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