24 Mar 2014

old books on my mind

This post had me thinking about re-reads. I have a small cadre of books that I’ve read and re-read and re-read. When I talk about re-reading, I’m usually talking about the usual bunch – Lockhart, Dessen, Green, Naylor, Thomas, McCafferty. Harry Potter, of course, and a few other favorites. I occasionally revisit other books I’ve liked – especially if I can try it out in a different format – but it doesn’t happen very often. I usually stick to the same old re-reads.

Maybe it’s time to stir things up a bit. Here are some books I’ve thought about lately that I could re-read this year…

I posted about Donna Tartt’s The Secret History a few months ago but it has not left my mind. In fact, this book is starting to taunt me. Everyone is still talking GoldfinchGoldfinchGoldfinch, but those Goldfinch conversations quickly turn to The Secret History conversations (mostly because nobody I talk books with has actually *read* The Goldfinch yet…).

Also, I feel like every time I read a book I really love, I read an author interview revealing The Secret History as a major literary influence. The universe is pointing me toward a re-read.

Speaking of books I read to death in high school but haven’t touched in a few years, last week I checked out a copy of Judy Blume’s Summer Sisters.

Historically, I’ve had trouble convincing people this is a book of merit. It creates awkward situations. I leant out my ragged paperback copy in the tenth grade, eager to share this special treasure with a friend. She returned it a few days later. “I can’t finish it,” she said, red-cheeked and low-voiced. “It’s too weird. They’re like, lesbians!”

Anywaaaaaay, I’m a lesbian-sex-freak-pervert-reader. Moving on. I used to read this book every year, usually on vacation, at my grandpa’s house in Myrtle Beach. But it’s been awhile since I’ve been down south and awhile since I’ve read this book. My interest has been renewed because A) I’ve been thinking a lot about female friendships in general and B) I read an article where Lena Dunham cited the book as a major influence on that little HBO series called Girls. Which I think is amazing and is probably why I love Girls despite all sorts of logical reasons not to.



Speaking of What Jessica Is Doing on the Internet Instead of Being Productive, I’m a little bit obsessed with the lost Malaysian flight. I mean that with all the respect in the world toward the crew and passengers and I pray-pray-pray they are safe and sound, but look guys, I watched every season of LOST. This is freaking me out. It’s the same compulsion as the “Do I Have This Rare Disease?” Google Game – it’s horrifying, it’s terrible for the nerves, but it’s very difficult to stop clicking.

I keep tabs on NPR’s book coverage for work, so of course I clicked on the article titled “Malaysia Flight 370 and the World’s Attention.” I was hoping for the announcement of a memoir or an exposé or something juicy, but what I found was… Gary Paulsen’s The Hatchet. I read The Hatchet repeatedly in my 4th and 5th grade years. I also can’t stop refreshing the Malaysian Flight page on Reddit. This astute NPR writer sees right through my strange habits for what they are: anxiety-bait.

That being said, I still want to re-read The Hatchet.


And speaking of books I loved as a child, The Boy reminded me yesterday that Cheaper By the Dozen is available on Overdrive. One of my favorite books of all time, which I also haven’t read in forever, and decidedly less horrifying.

Or I could just read Game of Thrones again. If I start now, I could have the first three re-read by the time season four wraps and be ready to move on A Feast For Crows!

Let’s all pretend this is a rational course of action.

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