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Does anyone else have a novel that they read over and over again, and why?


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Showing 1-25 of 218 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 10 Sep 2012 20:33:54 BDT
Last edited by the author on 10 Sep 2012 20:35:09 BDT
Ian Scott says:
Mine's 'Islands in the Stream' by Hemmingway, because my ambition is to be Thomas Hudson on Bimini in the 1930s.

Posted on 10 Sep 2012 21:50:41 BDT
Roma says:
Hi

"Sunset Song" by Lewis Grassic Gibbon is a novel I never tire of reading. Set in the north east of Scotland, before and during WW1, this novel tells the story of Chris Guthrie who wishes to become a teacher, but is thwarted, initially by the death of her mother and ultim by her love of the land. Many themes are explored in the novel - religion, relationships, war, feminism, communism/socialism. However, the style in which it is written is what keeps me reading it again and again. The punctuation of the prose is unusual and causes you to read the novel as if someone's melodious voice is washing over you. There is an absolutely wonderful speech delivered by a minister at the standing stones, in remembrance of those who died in the war."I will give you the morning star." It's on a level with MLK's "Dream" speech.

SS is a difficult novel because of the Scottish dialect and unusual style of writing, but well worth reading. One piece of advice I'd give is to skip the first part of the song as it is very difficult to read and only provides background info. I wouldn't bother reading this until I had finished the book.

Posted on 10 Sep 2012 22:24:35 BDT
Not a novel, but Bill Bryson's "Notes from a Small Island". Makes me laugh and laugh.

In reply to an earlier post on 10 Sep 2012 22:28:52 BDT
Ian Scott says:
Thanks. Sounds like I need to give that a try.

In reply to an earlier post on 10 Sep 2012 22:32:56 BDT
Last edited by the author on 10 Sep 2012 22:46:41 BDT
Ian Scott says:
I like that too. I grew up near the Roman mosaic he describes on Cleeve Hill that was covered in feed sacks. Never knew it was there. After reading the book I went back and visited and found the site. It was just as he described it.

I think my favorite line was about a shop that would buy anything, and he thought about going in, spitting on the counter and asking, "How much for that then?"

Posted on 10 Sep 2012 22:36:40 BDT
I like this line (I think from "The Lost Continent")

Afterwards I retired with a six-pack to my motel, where I discovered that the bed, judging by its fragrance and shape, had only recently been vacated by a horse.

In reply to an earlier post on 10 Sep 2012 22:45:59 BDT
Ian Scott says:
Have you read any of his non-'travel' books? I've read all of the travel books, but for some reason have this idea that the later stuff won't be as good (based on absolutely nothing whatsoever mind you - just some weird hunch).

In reply to an earlier post on 10 Sep 2012 22:53:48 BDT
Yes - the only one I can't get into is the complete history thing (off the top of my head) but will try harder when I get round to it. Really enjoying the Home one at the moment - very entertaining and informative.

Posted on 10 Sep 2012 23:24:07 BDT
Jon Hickey says:
Consider Phlebas by Iain M Banks - Fantastic Sci Fi - my bench mark for Sci Fi books

Posted on 11 Sep 2012 02:53:24 BDT
Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy. I find reading it very comforting. Also, The Ginger Man. Takes me back to my youth.To Save the Realm

In reply to an earlier post on 11 Sep 2012 06:10:45 BDT
Ian Scott says:
'Islands in the Stream' does that for me. It takes me back to when I first read it. It was during a trip I made to some of my favourite places on the planet about 20 years ago. I suspect that's why I like it so much.

Some films do the same. 'Where Eagles Dare' takes me back to an excellent Christmas period when I was in my mid- to late-teens (I think it must have been on the telly on a Boxing Day) when all of the elements conspired to make it a perfect memory.

Posted on 11 Sep 2012 10:17:44 BDT
W. Stephens says:
The English Patient - prose to luxuriate in, and a great story.
Rabbit Run - and the others in the 'tetrology' by John Updike. I just go around and around four novels.
Couples - John Updike

Posted on 11 Sep 2012 16:03:42 BDT
Arosfa says:
'Swann Song' is a post apocalyptic story that is ultimately about the tennacity of the human spirit. It is not an easy read being quite hoffific in parts and a fiction book at that but it is one I re-read at regular intervals

Posted on 11 Sep 2012 16:34:42 BDT
I capture the castle I have read it over and over again for the last 60 years!!!

Posted on 11 Sep 2012 17:04:31 BDT
Hrea says:
Legacy: The Acclaimed Novel of Elizabeth, England's Most Passionate Queen -- And the Three Men Who Loved Her
My favourite book is `Legend' by Susan Kay. Written about Elizabeth 1 from her time in the Tower to the end of her life, is goes through the relationships with the men in her life and her enduring love affair with England. It is such a refreshing take on a very familiar story that I have probably read it about ten times. My only gripe is that it is not on Kindle as my paper copy is getting very battered. Come on Amazon, wouldn't it be a good idea if when saying you want a book on Kindle you can see how many have already voted for it. Then you might get an idea if it is every going to happen, oh well....

Posted on 11 Sep 2012 18:19:58 BDT
T. Byrne says:
I just love all of the Miss Read books, hav read them numerous time and never tire of her
fond but ironic tales of village life. you feel you know the characters ie the cranky and martyred school cleaner plus all the locals. Any of her books are fabulous to read on a rainy day or if you are stuck in the bed with a cold. Also like D E Stevenson's books, a delight each and every
one of them.

Posted on 12 Sep 2012 00:32:54 BDT
The Secret History by Donna Tartt. Partly for the plot, partly for the heart-achingly beautiful set-peice scenes and partly beacuse I am myself so like the narrator-character, Richard.
I also like Bill Bryson too, though!

In reply to an earlier post on 12 Sep 2012 04:43:47 BDT
It's not a novel, but a collection of short stories, "The Draco Tavern" by Larry Niven.

Posted on 12 Sep 2012 20:12:32 BDT
LadyJaguar says:
I've been dipping into Robert Rutherfurd's Sarum for about fifteen years now. Never get tired of it. It's such a massive book, but so human, so feisty in dialogue and character, that I find something new every time I pick it up. Brilliant (haven't reviewed it yet on Amazon, but will when I get round to it.)

Lady J

Posted on 12 Sep 2012 20:24:00 BDT
ros martin says:
To Kill a Mockingbird - a moving tale on so many levels - beautifully crafted - it was Harper Lee's only published work as far as I know

Posted on 12 Sep 2012 20:44:37 BDT
Papillion by Henri Charrière is the one I have read at least three times. An amazing life story, but debated how much is entirely true..

Posted on 12 Sep 2012 22:15:12 BDT
The Great Gatsby. Probably the most perfect novel ever written.

Posted on 12 Sep 2012 23:38:21 BDT
Mine is Thomas Hardy's "The Mayor of Casterbridge"; some episodes in my own life (of which I am not proud) echo those of Michael Henchard. And yes, Ryan Williams, "The Great Gatsby" is magnificent. I have re-read it many times. Oh yes, and Evelyn Waugh's "Sword of Honour" trilogy.
On a more popular level, I have re-read the "Charlie Parker" novels of John Connolly at least three times.

In reply to an earlier post on 13 Sep 2012 07:45:01 BDT
Interesting post G. I have read this book many times and often wonder at extent of imaginative memory he had. Even so,if it is a bit imigination stretching it woul still be a great read. Banco a bit less so.

Posted on 13 Sep 2012 07:49:02 BDT
Sou'Wester says:
Not many novels I read over and over again (though there are quite a few I've read several times). I do have "comfort reading" in the shape of the Sherlock Holmes stories and also the Rumpole books. Being short stories you can dip into these as and when you feel inclined. I've also got a volume of Don Camillo stories which fall into the same category.
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Discussion in:  fiction discussion forum
Participants:  145
Total posts:  218
Initial post:  10 Sep 2012
Latest post:  11 Dec 2013

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