Reread Challenge: Book of a Thousand Days by Shannon Hale

The 2015 Re-Read Challenge

WHEN I First Read:  When I was twelve or thirteen, I think? I’d just read what existed of the Books of Bayern series and I wanted more Shannon Hale in my life.

WHAT I Remember: Literally nothing. There were two girls in a tower? and then they get out? and one of them falls in love? vaguely Mongolian setting? and there’s a cat? somewhere? maybe? That was pretty much all I remembered. I do know I liked the book, though. Just the memory of reading a Shannon Hale book is enough to give me fuzzy feelings.

WHY I Wanted to Re-Read:  I saw a copy at Half-Price Books for one dollar and knew I had to have it. Later, a Twitter friend of mine who was also a Shannon Hale fan mentioned this book, and my need to reread it increased. 

HOW I Felt After Re-Reading: Warm fuzzy happy feelings. Dashti is a wonderful heroine with strength and humor and loyalty and compassion, and her voice stands out. She’s human and flawed–she can be naive, get angry, say the wrong things–but she’s such a genuinely good person that I couldn’t help loving her. I think I appreciated Saren more on this reread too–her self-doubt and depression in the first half of the book are painful to read, and I love that narrative portrays her sympathetically even during her lowest moments, and that her eventual growth, small as it may seem, is celebrated. This book is just so good and so underrated and I wish more people knew about it.

WOULD I Re-Read Again:  Definitely. As I’ve probably said before, Shannon Hale is a hot-chocolate-and-blankets kind of author.

Sondra

Reread Challenge: The Demon’s Lexicon Trilogy by Sarah Rees Brennan

The 2015 Re-Read Challenge
WHEN I First Read: April 2014
 
WHAT I Remember: Demons! Evil magicians! Siblings who love each other! Some awesome ladies! Alan Ryves, ruiner of lives! All the main characters being willing to do anything for their siblings! Lots of tears! Getting emotional about the phrase “in two worlds”! Nick’s character arc being amazing! Sin being an amazing performer whose many different identies are a part of her and who handles a ridiculous amount of responsibility on her own and does it well! Mae being brave and confident and having pink hair and wearing cool t-shirts! Jamie being a beautiful cinnamon roll! SIBLINGS WHO MAKE ME CRY WITH HOW MUCH THEY LOVE EACH OTHER! I’m sorry, this book brings out all the exclamation marks in me!
 
WHY I Wanted to Re-Read: I reread the first book last March for YAReadalong. I kept meaning to reread books 2 and 3 and putting them off because I had so many unread books on my list, but this months two of my friends started reading the series for the first time and I decided to join them in their pain.
 
HOW I Felt After Re-Reading: I love it just as much as I did the first time. Even though the story has some flawed elements (Jamie’s character development in book 3 being mostly off-screen, the way Mae and Sin’s rivalry for the Goblin Market is resolved, Jamie/Seb), I love the story as a whole, the amazing characters and relationships, the piles and piles and piles of sibling feelings. Sarah Rees Brennan is my favorite author for a reason, you guys. Also, rereading with friends who were reading for the first time and watching them have emotional breakdowns on Twitter greatly enhanced my reading experience.

WOULD I Re-Read Again: Yes, yes, a million times yes.

Reread Challenge: Skinjacker Trilogy by Neal Shusterman

The 2015 Re-Read Challenge
WHEN I First Read: 2011-2012-ish? I’m not sure when exactly, but sometime when I was seventeen.
 
WHAT I Remember: This world between life and death where teenagers go when they die. Lots of really cool original worldbuilding and plot twists. Allie/Mikey OTP for life. Mary Hightower is legitimately terrifying despite (or perhaps because of) looking like a Victorian twelve-year old.
 
WHY I Wanted to Re-Read: This series was one of my all-time favorites when I was in high school. This spring, I reread the Unwind Dystology and finally finished the last book, and I loved it even more than I remembered, and that got me thinking of my past love for this series.
 
HOW I Felt After Re-Reading: I was actually a bit underwhelmed this time around, maybe because I’d already read the Unwind Dystology and it was so good that it raised my standards for Neal Shusterman books, and maybe because I had a basic idea of the plot and couldn’t be surprised this time around. I still really enjoyed it, though! The characters were fun, if a bit less complex than I would have liked, but what really makes all of Neal Shusterman’s books work is the ideas he comes up with and the moral questions he discusses. His books are so creative and intelligent and I’m constantly in awe of his abilities.

WOULD I Re-Read Again: Probably in a few years.