Friday, 5 July 2013

Woe to those who see no sense in re-reading books!

Books breathe a fresh new life into my breathless world. It sends my imagination on a flight of fantasy in seconds. But what peeves me off is the fact that once the freshness of a new book fades off, it becomes a thing of the past. Yes, I have developed this utterly disgusting habit of tasting books, much less devouring them or digesting them.      
Sir Francis Bacon may have rightly said: “Some books should be tasted, some devoured, but only a few should be chewed and digested thoroughly." But so far for me, first time read becomes the final read. No looking back. And by the way, isn't this the stereotypical norm with every regular reader. Am I any different!

And, tell me one thing, why in the world should I re-read books. When the plot is etched very clearly on my mind, when the characters are there on my fingertips, when I am fully aware of what’s going to happen in the next bend, then why re-read at all? This thought has crossed my mind a thousand times, when I comb through those countless books adorning my book shelf.
Yes, not long ago, the books piled up on my book-shelf were anything but a millstone around my neck. In fact, I even thought of trading it off for a few bucks. But couldn't bring myself to doing it, until I came across this thoughtful quote from Oscar Wilde: “If one cannot enjoy reading a book over and over again, there is no use reading it all."

My books have found a new life now. I gonna re-read them, one day at time 
The quote has struck a perfect chord with me, so much so that I started pulling out the best books from my book-self and started re-reading them once again. Before this, I used to wonder what I would do with all these old books, crowding my book-shelf. If Aryan doesn’t read them (in case, he has his own choice of books), who’s is going to read them? But now I know what I’ll do with them. Re-read and re-read them, over and over again, till the book becomes a part of me - the characters, the plot, anything and everything. And once I am done with them, I’ll lend them to other book lovers. Of course for a price. (First-hand books don’t come cheap, by the way.)

Thanks to Oscar Wilde, I believe, most of the books we love, and the authors we admire, should be read again and again. Of course, I’ve heard authors harping on the pleasures of re-reading books a couple of times, but during those times, I wondered, how could they? Now I know why, once I started reading 'Man’s Search for Meaning' by Victor Frankl. 

No doubt, my book-shelf is half-empty today. Now I won’t mind filling it up to the brim and then add some more. The process of filling up my book-shelf is though  damn slow: but I won’t stop. 

Raise A Toast to Re-reading 
Jini Maxin 

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