Monday, May 12, 2014

Comfort reading

I've always been a re-reader.  Growing up, my father instilled in me the desire to buy or otherwise obtain books that I could keep, rather than borrowing them, so I could always re-read them if I wanted to.  Naturally, this led to the kind of library that causes moving companies to glare daggers at you, but that's beside the point.

I discovered early on that there are some books that I enjoy re-reading multiple times, because they make me feel better.  Something about revisiting a story I already know well, and characters I've met before, can be very soothing.  Some of them are books I read about once a year; others I cling to when I need something specific, even if it's undefinable.  Below are some of my favorites:

A Wrinkle in Time - probably my favorite book of all time.  This was the book that taught me it was OK to have a female protagonist who wasn't the prettiest/smartest/best at everything, but rather someone a little more like me.  It also showed me that heroes don't always want to be heroes.

A Little Princess - this one's a close second of favorite book ever.  I find that I like to read it when I'm hungry - the scenes describing the food that the Magic leaves for Sara always interested me, even if they aren't particularly detailed.

The Anne of Green Gables series - I freely admit, Gilbert Blythe was my first crush.  It's also really nice to read about a girl with the kind of imagination that can run wild.

The Discworld series - I didn't discover Terry Pratchett until I was in college, when a friend handed me Maskerade.  I devoured it, and haven't looked back.  Sometimes, I focus on one series - usually the Watch or the Death books - but occasionally I'll just pick one at random and see where it takes me.

The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society - I have probably read this book five or six times since I got it when it first came out, and I find new things about it every time.  Watching people bond over books and letters, even in the aftermath of World War II, is something I think I will always enjoy.

So, what are your comfort reads?  What do you find yourself reaching for when you're having a bad day or just need something familiar?