To reread or not to reread? (Throne of Glass)

Rereading is one of those marmite concepts that divide readers and it’s something I’ve been thinking about a lot in the run up to the release of Kingdom of Ash. One Guardian article claims “anyone who talks about rereading a book is arrogant, narrow-minded or dim” and a BBC one points out “We have so little time to read and there are so many great books that we’ve yet to get around to”. On the other hand, Patrick Rothfuss is actively encouraging us to reread the first two books before the third comes out, plenty of book bloggers are fans of rereading (Micheline, Mel, even Cait who initially was anti-rereading because there’s not enough time!) and there was a lot of praise for GoodReads finally adding a rereading feature.

Generally I do like re-reading: most years I reread a handful of books (4% in 2016, 7% in 2017) and I’d initially planned to reread the Throne of Glass series over the summer.  Since I’ve been following the series for more than 5 years and this is the finale, I want to get the best out of it but now with less than 2 weeks until publication date, if I start rereading I’ll definitely be late to pick up Kingdom of Ash and so I’m absolutely torn!  Who better to talk to about this than other readers though, right?!

Advantages of rereading

  • No wasted time at the beginning trying to remember who characters are or what happened in previous books
  • Being fully emotionally invested in all the characters from page 1
  • Pick up more hints about upcoming twists, get more of the nuances of the story
  • Revisit a story you previously loved

Disadvantages of rereading

  • Can burn out on one author/genre/trope
  • Takes up time you could be using to read new books you’ve never read before
  • If you start too late with your reread (i.e. me, if I start now) you’ll be starting the newest book after a lot of other readers


On the one hand, I know I’ll enjoy rereading the series and I definitely spent some of the last two books trying to remember what had happened previously, so it’d be nice to avoid that (I know sites like Recaptains exist but it feels a bit like cheating!). As this is the finale, it’d be good to get the absolute best out of it, given how much I’ve enjoyed the series so far – I’m pretty certain I reread Harry Potter before the release of Deathly Hallows!  A few years ago, I’d have just reread, because I was reading a lot faster – getting through all of the books in two weeks would have been challenging, but I’d probably have managed it. Given my reading pace since starting my new course though, I’m probably looking at at least a month to get back up to date, and I have to admit I’m worried about spoilers.  I considered just rereading the last book or two, but I feel like that’s an unsatisfying compromise – I feel like if I don’t reread before Kingdom of Ash, that in a year or two I’ll end up rereading the whole series.  If that’s true, I might as well just reread now and get the benefit of maximum enjoyment from Kingdom of Ash…

I think I’m leaning towards rereading, but I am curious: what would you do? Are you generally a rereader or not?

 

Rereading Throne of Glass: what do you think I should do?

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Top Ten longest books I’ve ever read

Top Ten Tuesday is a feature hosted at That Artsy Reader Girl where each week has a specific prompt everyone is welcome to post a list with their own answers. This week’s theme is “Top Ten longest books I’ve ever read“.

This week’s list is absolutely dominated by two authors.  It’s no surprise that George R.R. Martin features so heavily, as the Game of Thrones books are notoriously long, though Robin Hobb was less expected.  Objectively I know Hobb’s books are big but they’re always so good I never really notice just how long they are!

  • A Feast for Crows by George R.R. Martin (1,061 pages)
  • The Wise Man’s Fear by Patrick Rothfuss (994 pages)
  • A Clash of Kings by George R.R. Martin (931 pages)
  • Fool’s Fate by Robin Hobb (914 pages)
  • The Mad Ship by Robin Hobb (906 pages)

  • A Game of Thrones by George R.R. Martin (896 pages)
  • Ship of Magic by  Robin Hobb (880 pages)
  • Assassin’s Fate by Robin Hobb (853 pages)
  • Belgarath the Sorcerer by David Eddings (840 pages)
  • The Redemption of Althalus by David Eddings (800 pages)

What are the longest books you’ve read?

September Wrap-Up & Looking ahead to October

My reading this month was literally less than half of last month’s- you can tell my uni course has well and truly started!  In October things will ratchet up another notch so outside of studying I haven’t really got too much planned yet.  In September I hit my original Goodreads goal of 100 books, so I’ve slightly increased it to 104 – it’s not much, but I think as term goes on, I’ll probably be reading less and less, so I don’t want to set it too high!  I’ll be continuing with the Fall Bookish Bingo, joining in with Dewey’s 24 hour readathon, and blogging as much as I can around all of that!

Reading


Artemis | A Short History of Nearly Everything | City of Ghosts | Brief Cases | The Island | Sadie

Books read: 6 (12 less than August)
Pages read: 2408 (2578 less than August)
Average pages per day: 80
Average book length: 401
Favourite: A Short History of Nearly Everything

Blogging

Challenge Updates

  • Beat the Backlist (49/48) (+3)
  • Finishing the Series (7/15) (+/- 0)
  • Goodreads (100/100) – Goal achieved! Increased to 104.
  • NetGalley % change: +/- 1% (72%)

September Goals

  • -6lbs: EPIC FAIL.
  • 4 blog posts: Exceeded! 6 posts managed.
  • At least 1 cinema trip & 1 date evening: We managed a cinema trip to see Crazy Rich Asians. We didn’t manage a specific date night, but we did have a few evenings at home with a takeaway and some tv, and also quite a few social things with friends so I’m happy enough with that.

October TBR


My Life and Laughing (294) | Audible (started)
Time’s Convert (436) | Audible
Waking Gods (336) | Library (started)

Target pages = 1066

October Goals

  • Weight loss – back into the 11s
  • 4 blog posts, including 2 reviews
  • Take part in Dewey’s 24 hour readathon
  • At least 1 cinema trip & 1 date evening

How was your September?

The Island (M. A. Bennett)

The Island by M.A. Bennett
on January 1st 1970
Pages: 304
Goodreads

Link is a fish out of water. Newly arrived from America, he is finding it hard to settle into the venerable and prestigious Osney School. Who knew there could be so many strange traditions to understand? And what kind of school ranks its students by how fast they can run round the school quad - however ancient that quad may be? When Link runs the slowest time in years, he immediately becomes the butt of every school joke. And some students are determined to make his life more miserable than others . . .

When a school summer trip is offered, Link can think of nothing worse than spending voluntary time with his worst tormentors. But when his parents say he can only leave Osney School - forever - if he goes on the trip, Link decides to endure it for the ultimate prize. But this particular trip will require a very special sort of endurance. The saying goes 'No man is an island' - but what if on that island is a group of teenagers, none of whom particularly like each other? When oppressive heat, hunger and thirst start to bite, everyone's true colours will be revealed. Let the battle commence . . .

From the acclaimed author of S.T.A.G.S.

Plot: ★★★
Characters: ★★
Readability: ★★

I thought I would really enjoy The Island; a group of teens, stranded on a desert island, the bullied and the bullies forced together, no one knows where they are… The concept was great, and having enjoyed Bennett’s previous book (S.T.A.G.S.) I had expectations of a fast-paced, twisting YA thriller.  At only 304 pages, I figured it’d be a quick read, especially given that S.T.A.G.S. was so gripping. Ultimately though, I found The Island disappointing; it felt like a real slog to get into and it took me more than 2 weeks to finish.  I remember reading Lord of the Flies at about 16 and really enjoying it, and I figured this would be a bit like a modernised version of that.  While that was true in some respects, it just never hooked me the way I expected it to and it never got as tense as I expected.

Link has been bullied ever since moving to a posh British school, from having previously been homeschooled in the States.  He reluctantly agrees to go on a school trip over the summer but everything goes wrong and he finds himself stranded on a deserted island with the worst of his tormenters.  Link is quite an unlikable character: he has no real empathy or sympathy and he’s quite self-righteous.  He thinks he’s smarter than everyone else – there are some actions in the book which I’d say prove he isn’t half as smart as he thinks he is, but I can’t explain that without spoilers!  The other characters on the island are stereotypical to a fault and while Bennett tries to give them back-stories, have characters grow etc, it’s all just a bit too predictable.  In terms of plot, while there are twists, I thought they were so obviously foreshadowed that none of them were a surprise.

While the pop culture references seem like they could make the book date quickly, I really liked that the Desert Island Discs element was something a bit new and different so I couldn’t resist trying to come up with my own.

My Desert Island Discs: Honestly, I could spend weeks picking these, so I just went on gut instinct. They’re not in any particular order.

  • Linkin Park: One More Light & In the End
  • Moana: How Far I’ll Go
  • The Greatest Showman: The Other Side
  • Nashville: When the Right One Comes Along
  • Mulan: I’ll Make a Man Out of You
  • Blink-182: I Miss You
  • Ed Sheeran: Perfect

My book:

  • Harry Potter & The Half-Blood Prince.
    • This was the hardest decision and I’m still not sure it’s right: should I pick something longer that’ll take ages to read? But this is my go-to re-read. In a slump? HP6. Sad and want something comforting? HP6. Plus, it’d be good for fanfic ideas which might help keep me entertained and ties into my luxury item…

My luxury item:

  • Pen & paper – I’m hoping it’s an endless supply of paper. I could write letters to people I loved and missed (obviously I couldn’t send them but I think it’d make me less crazy to remember there are other people in the world!), I could write fiction/fanfiction/poetry/journal entries, I could doodle, I could make observations on plants/wildlife etc.
One StarOne Star

Top Ten Books By My Favorite Authors That I Still Haven’t Read

Top Ten Tuesday is a feature hosted at That Artsy Reader Girl where each week has a specific prompt everyone is welcome to post a list with their own answers. This week’s theme is “Books By My Favorite Authors That I Still Haven’t Read“.

This is actually one I really struggled with because I’m up to date with quite a few of my favourite authors (Maria V. Snyder, Sarah J. Maas, Pierce Brown, Becky Chambers).

Robin Hobb

I’ve loved every book I’ve ever read by Robin Hobb, but so far I’ve stuck to the Realm of the Elderlings books.  I’d like to actually go back and read her other series, even if they’re not necessarily something I would normally pick up; the Megan Lindholm series isn’t fantasy but I’m curious because she wrote them and I just love Hobb’s writing!

J. K. Rowling

Well of course J. K. Rowling was going to feature on this list! I’ve read the first Cormoran Strike book and while it was enjoyable enough, I still haven’t picked up the second book despite the fact it’s been on my shelves for an embarrassingly long time. I’m sure I’ll get to it eventually, I just keep being drawn in by new additions to my shelves. The Tales of Beedle the Bard is one I really do want to get to eventually.

Laini Taylor

So I’d never actually come across this book until I discovered it at a book sale earlier this year. Of course I picked it up: I absolutely loved both the Daughter of Smoke and Bone series and Strange the Dreamer so I have high hopes for this too!

Matt Haig

I really enjoyed The Humans and Reasons to Stay Alive but I haven’t read Notes on a Nervous Planet yet – I don’t feel too bad because it hasn’t been out that long, but I definitely intend to get to it pretty soon! How to Stop Time is probably a book I wouldn’t pick up apart from the fact I know it’s by Matt Haig, so it’s one I’ll grab if I see it at the library but probably won’t rush out and buy.

Jodi Picoult

I always know what I’m getting with a Jodi Picoult read: multiple points of view, ethical/moral dilemmas, shades of grey, all in easy-to-get-lost-in prose with characters I’ll relate to, hate and love in varying degrees.  There’s a few of hers I haven’t read yet but as I do have a copy of The Storyteller that’s highest on the priority list.

David & Leigh Eddings

David & Leigh Eddings are what got me into fantasy to start with and I think this is the only series of theirs I haven’t finished. I picked up book 1 and 2 too long ago to be able to jump straight back in with Crystal Gorge and at the moment, I can’t bring myself to step away from all the other books I want to read long enough to re-read both of those followed by the last two books.  I’ll get there one day!

Mira Grant


I love Mira Grant’s books so having exhausted her novel backlist I’ve started moving on to the stories she writes under Seanan McGuire instead. I haven’t started the October Daye series yet – partially because there are so many of them – but I know people love them so I definitely will do.

Any thoughts on which of these I should pick up first? And which books are on your TBR by your favourite authors?