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Think Write Thursday

The Think Write Thursday topic for April 6, 2017 is to tell us about a book you wish you could read again for the first time. 

You know, I picked the topic for this week and it seemed like a great idea at the time. Now that I’m sitting down to actually write this post, though, I’m thinking whaaaaaat? How do I pick just one single book that I wish I could read again for the first time. I mean, there are so many that I’ve loved and re-read.  But I guess, despite my thoughts about The Sparrow and The Red Tent and Little Women and Pride & Prejudice, I’m going to have to go with The Time Traveler’s Wife.

The reason I wish I could read it again for the first time is because then I could remain hopeful and happy. I wouldn’t know the pain that is coming, I wouldn’t know the ending, I would just enjoy and revel in the beautiful romance of Henry and Clare. There is so much I loved about this book, not just the love story part but also the science and time travel, the music and art and culture, the quiet ordinary lives that Henry and Clare wanted to lead. And he’s a librarian. A hot librarian. There’s just so much to love about the story (except for those bad parts) and, while I assume everyone has read it by now, I don’t want to give anything away so that’s all I’ll say about that. Of course, as I recall, there is a lot of foreshadowing in the book and I’m pretty sure I figured out early on that it wasn’t going to be a happily-ever-after kind of story but still – if I could read it again for the first time I could experience it all again, pain and joy and all, without knowing for sure what was headed their way.

The whole concept of not wanting to know how it’s going to turn out feels a lot like life, doesn’t it? I mean, we get a puppy or a kitten and we know we’ll most likely outlive it. But we do it anyway because pets make our lives better. We have children knowing that they will bring joy, but also angst, into our lives. We open ourselves up to pain and loss on a daily basis because we take chances and we fall in love and we make friends and take risks and really, life wouldn’t be worth much if we didn’t.

You know who said this better than me? Audrey Niffenegger in The Time Traveler’s Wife: “Don’t you think it’s better to be extremely happy for a short while, even if you lose it, than to be just okay for your whole life?”

Yes, I suppose I do. So long as I don’t see the sad parts coming.

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This Post Has 18 Comments

  1. This is an interesting topic to ponder, both for the books themselves and the reasons we want to read them again for the first time. I couldn’t choose just one, but at least narrowed down my original list a little bit. I’ve never read The Sparrow, so I’m glad I do get to read it for the first time!

  2. Great quote. It reminds me of the line from Steel Magnolias, “I would rather have 30 minutes of wonderful than a lifetime of nothing special.”
    Which book is a tough question. I’ll be thinking about it today.

  3. and now I need to re-read TTW! it’s been so many years since I read it, I think it will be like reading it for the first time! (but now that you’ve reminded me how devastating it is…maybe I’ll hold off 🙂 This was a great topic – I love to write and read about books!

  4. Actually, a whole series sprang to mind! But the first one was most magical since I had no clear expectations. Harry Potter! The writing was so rich in images and little surprises. It captivated me like books did when I was young and could fill great swaths of time with reading. Now it is often a chapter here or there and some of the magic can be lost compared to when I get to take in a story in big gulps.

    I also really enjoyed Rowling’s ability to tickle my imagination with her made up words. They made me stop and think about their meaning & their source before I would read on to see how she used them. Maybe I’ll reread a book or two this summer.

  5. Great post, Carole. And, I love your book choices – many of which I have not read! (However, I am adding them to my list today!) XOXO

  6. That is a perfect choice, Carole!
    I actually got too overwhelmed by the topic this week and had to opt out, in the end. I did a lot of thinking about books, but just couldn’t quite wrap my head around the choosing part. (I’ll just enjoy reading everyone else’s posts today.) XO

  7. gotmsome catching up to do–I haven’t read this book! Every good book I’ve read makes me want to reread but alas, there’s so many books qued up….

  8. “We open ourselves up to pain and loss on a daily basis because we take chances and we fall in love and we make friends and take risks and really, life wouldn’t be worth much if we didn’t.”

    So true! I loved your words and how you expressed this. I don’t like hurt and pain and I can try to shield myself from it, but what would life be without loving?!!

  9. I wish I could read Little Women for the first time again. I recently toured the home in Concord and loved it. I think I will take out my very old copy and read it today on this very wet, cold spring day. Thanks for the great idea!

  10. Great topic Carol, but a tough choice. Initially I thought of A Tree Grows in Brooklyn…then Rebecca…and then I thought of Atlas Shrugged, Ahab’s Wife, Stones From the River, and on and on and on. After that I drifted back to much younger years and thought of Charlotte’s Web and Stuart Little. I can’t decide – lol!

  11. The Passion by Jeanette Winterson. With the accompanying soundtrack that I listened to when I first read it, The Pink Opaque by Cocteau Twins.

    You kind of have to like melodramatic weird things though.

  12. I can’t narrow it down to one either, Carole! I’m thinking that any of the following would fall into that category, I Know This Much is True, A Thousand Splendid Suns, All the Light We Cannot See, and now that Vera reminded me, Stones from the River would all be strong contenders. I was very fond of all of your choices as well. I love these book topics!

  13. Lots of choices to contemplate, thanks to your great choice of a topic. I will put Time Traveler’s Wife on my list of fiction to read…I don’t really read fiction so you’ve sold me…tbc.


  14. Just as Kym said, this topic was too hard a choice. I have read dozens (hundreds!) of books I wish I could read again for the first time. Books, stories, have a great impact on our lives. Some come along when we need them, others are fresh and new (like Harry Potter). I have enjoyed everyone’s choices.

  15. That’s a hard choice, but I think I’d go with re-reading Agatha Christe. Yes, I’d rather have a short time of joy/happiness-am sure my 20-ish self might have said something different.

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