Hello bookworms!! Today I want to talk about books that I absolutely adored, but I’m scared to reread them.
I know you know the books I’m talking about. You probably read them YEARS ago. And you loved them with your whole heart. But, you also acknowledge that you’ve grown as a reader. And, they likely haven’t aged well. You might not even remember anything in them that could be problematic, but it’s possible that there’s something. And, if you reread them, that shiny tint that they still have in your mind, is likely very tarnished up close. So, we keep them on the shelf and just try not to think about them too much.
If this is you, then I feel your pain. I have a whole list of these books. And honestly, I don’t want you all to read them either, because I’m not sure I even want to know if they’re bad now. But, here we are!!
So, this is my list of potentially problematic books that I loved, that I may not ever reread.
books I’m scared to reread
Fallen — Lauren Kate
I LOVED this series so much when it first came out. Which is funny, because I usually credit Daughter of Smoke and Bone as the series that really hooked me into YA, but I definitely read this series first. It also appears that I have a thing for books about angels, fallen or otherwise…
In saying that, I never read the extra book. (I don’t want to say the last book, because the story ends with book 4, but it’s the Midnight Sun-type add-on that I missed.) If I read this series now, I’d likely be horrified of the bullying and trauma. But, 10 years ago Meeghan was ok with this.
The Witches of Eileanan — Kate Forsyth
I actually don’t know that I would dislike this series if I reread it. In fact, I have a friend who rereads this every couple of years and she 100% loves it still. I think my main fear of rereading this series is that I just wouldn’t love it as much. And this series was one of my all-time favourites.
So, I’m probably more scared to reread this because I love it so much. And it’s probably all in my head that I won’t. In saying that, I don’t actually think this series would be problematic at all ― and it certainly won’t have aged. (Ah the joy of fantasy.)
Sparkles — Louise Bagshawe
Honestly, this could probably apply to any Louise Bagshawe book that I have read… which is all of them except two. Yup, Louise Bagshawe was an auto-buy author for me for a long time. I would liken her books to… the tv series Dynasty. A little bit Emily Henry / Beth O’Leary, but there was always a rich person or family and a LOT of drama.
To be honest, I just think that these books probably wouldn’t have aged well. Some in terms of referencing technology, some in terms of opinions and societal acceptance. I’m fairly certain there is no diverse rep at all, except maybe a Latino character in one of the books. Which I would guess may not have had sensitivity readers given it was the early 2000s.
Adored — Tilly Bagshawe
Much like her sister, Louise, Tilly Bagshawe was an auto-buy author for me. And I read almost everything she wrote. I dropped off around the time that Tilly started to continue the Sidney Sheldon books, but every so often she would publish a new Swell Valley book. And I would devour it.
Just like her sister, Tilly write full dramatic stories with influential people hiding secrets, being abusive, keeping someone middle-lower class down. They usually have some kind of underdog aspect. Except for the Swell Valley series — they’re English countryside drama.
Again, I’m not sure that I would hugely dislike these if I reread them, but I do think the majority likely haven’t aged well.
The Southern Vampire Mysteries — Charlaine Harris
I devoured (pun intended) the Southern Vampire Mysteries. This is the series that started me on a very long obsession with pretty much anything Charlaine Harris wrote. But, I think if I went back and reread them, I would dislike them very much.
It’s funny, because I always disliked Bill in the books. If I was to use a more modern example, he gave me Tamlin vibes. And Eric, while definitely not Rhys, was more… Azriel. Plotting, planning, might use you as a pawn, but ultimately had your best interests at heart.
But the thing that I would probably dislike the most, is the faerie aspect. I have read so many more fae / faerie tales and myths now, that I have a feeling I’d just be “nope-ing” my way through the series. Plus, Bill. Blegh.
The Bronze Horseman — Paullina Simons
I was YOUNG when I read this series. Like, maybe 21-22. And I thought it was so romantic. The idea of war separating young love, and fighting your way back to someone. *chefs kiss*
Young Meeghan was an idiot. Honestly, these days war is the reason that I much prefer fantasy or contemporary/romance. Why would I want to read about something so horrific, when I could escape into a faerie ring (don’t do that), or stare longingly at the gorgeous specimen at the beach?
In fact, I would say that my tastes have changed so much since I read this series, that it is the reason that I still haven’t read The Book Thief. I am not interested in reading about historical fiction, unless we’re heading back to the regency period. Scandalous finger brushing and longing glances are in. Bombs and world wars are out.
Stephanie Plum series — Janet Evanovich
This is moderately insane for a few reasons, but primarily because I am still actively reading these books. Yup, as anyone who has been around for some time knows, I read every Janet Evanovich book when it’s released. Like, ALL of them.
But, the thing is, I don’t think I would ever go back and read them again from the beginning. Particularly the Stephanie Plum books. For a number of reasons.
1. The first book came out in 1994. And maybe people think that society’s values haven’t changed a great deal since then, but mine have. Not that I’ve been reading them that long, but still, a lot has changed. And while Evanovich’s writing has adapted, there’s still things mentioned in earlier books that I wouldn’t agree with now.
2. There’s a certain flow to these books, that while reading them very spaced apart, brings a level of comfort, nostalgia and enjoyment. If I was to reread these, I would probably start to despise the books and the characters.
3. No one has time for that. There are 28 Stephanie Plum books, plus 4 between-the-novels books. On top of that you have 3 Lizzie and Diesel’s, 7 Fox and O’Hare’s, 2 Alex Barnaby’s and 2 Knight and Moon’s. And then there’s all the romance books as well. There is a reason that Evanovich is my most read author, with a grand total of 67 books read (plus 1 currently reading). And I ain’t doing that again.
Do you have any books that you’re scared to reread?