So, as is obvious, I’m a book worm. I love to read fantasy,YA, romance, stories of magic… I love to read. But what may come as a surprise (though it shouldn’t) is that I love to reread. Sometimes I even reread books i didn’t particularly enjoy. Here’s why:
Books change as we grow.
I usually give a book a few months, maybe even years, before I pick it up again, but when i return to it, it is usually almost a different story. I have changed so much in the months or years that have passed since the book and I last met that the story holds completely new meaning for me.
Now this may all seem a bit abstract, so I’ll give the example that sparked this little rant. I recently reread Graceling by Kristen Cashore. (there shall be spoilers, so…. be warned.)
I’m not sure how many times I’ve read Graceling now, and I’ve read it’s companion books Fire and Bitterblue countless times as well (Fire is my favorite), but each time that I read Graceling it grows a little bit for me.
I first read Graceling when I was about 15. I loved it. It is adventurous and beautiful, with a strong female protagonist and a dashing lead male.It’s romantic and daring and wonderful. The love scene struck me as wonderfully willing to leave cultural stigma behind, and Prince Po is refreshingly willing to be emasculated (that came off wrong) What I mean is, he isn’t a dick when Katsa can hunt and he can’t. That being said, the ending bothered me. Why couldn’t Katsa just settle down, marry Po, and have his beautiful grey eyed babies?! Why did she have to be so stubborn and independent? I did not see why she thought tying herself to Po, who cherished her, would compromise her own self. My fifteen year old heart was all aflutter.I would have married him in a heartbeat. I still would. But that’s not the point of the story.
This time I saw it more than I ever had before. Katsa was not just exciting and daring, she was beautiful, and she made me think about what it means to be feminine and how gender roles effect girls as they grow. Po is still dashing (and now sexy) and he still endearingly lacks an ego, but it means more to me now. Po is strong and willful, used to being the best and the fastest, and Katsa’s superior skill does not bother him int he least. He treasures it. I think that’s beautiful. I’ve now had a bit more experience with love and relationships, and Katsa’s and Po’s love is truly meaningful to me. Lastly, the end is no longer sad. While Katsa does not make the same choices that I would, that’s okay. She is strong an independent, almost to a fault. She needs to feel completely free, which is beautiful in its own way, and she is not simply leaving Po to be alone. She is leaving him to do good int he world. She still loves him,and she will see him again.
So really, what I guess I’m saying is, if you haven’t read Graceling :read it
and if you have? reread it.