January 6, 2014

Fangirl Revisited

So this summer, I reviewed Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell here.  I didn't enjoy it, but it seems every one of the book bloggers I follow did.  I decided to reread it a few weeks ago, and see if my opinion has changed.

It has.  The language and objectionable content is still there and bothering me.  But I didn't dislike the rest quite as much.  I started to relate to Cath more.  I'm fortunate to have a core group of friends, but I prefer to be solitary and write a lot of the time.  College is looming in my future, and it's a bit daunting.  But I, too, want to study creative writing.  I'm kind of socially awkward.  So it was nice to reread and find a kindred spirit.

Now this brings up the question of why I disliked it so much the first time.  Was it just the level of objectionable content?  Did I somehow not connect to the story?  I'm not entirely sure.

I also wonder if, perhaps, I reread other books I disliked.  Will I enjoy them better the second time around, or will they still be as awful as I remembered?  I furthered my experiment by rereading My Life Next Door by Huntley Fitzpatrick.  This book got a 3-star rating on Goodreads, although I probably rounded up from a 2.5.  Why did I score this so low?  I felt Samantha was a flat, unchanging character.  I didn't like the romance.  I was largely bothered by the amount of inappropriate content.  So how did the second read go?  I still didn't like it.  Sure, there were little details I enjoyed, but these carried over from my first read.  Things like, Samantha's mom's lemonade and the Garrett family and the setting.  But the rest was largely unimpressive and a bit off-putting.  

I also reread Tiger Lily by Jodi Lynn Anderson.  It got a 3-star rating on Goodreads, as well.  I think it's a good book, but it's so depressing.  Wendy came off as a controlling idiot.  Peter became a jerk.  Hook was weird.  Smee was a creep.  Tinkerbell was much better.  Tiger Lily was wonderful.  I wanted to like it, but I felt numb the first time and I feel numb again.  Everything was much too gray.  There can be matters that are black and white.  I also felt the author was trying to push her agenda too much, what with how Tik Tok (Tiger Lily's adoptive father), the Englanders, and the tribe were presented.  I'd love to be able to give this 4 stars but it was so depressing that I can't love this book at all.

So maybe Fangirl was a fluke.  That's my best guess.  There's not a lot of books I'd like to try again with.  Fangirl might be the exception, since so many other bloggers loved it.

What do y'all think?  Do you think my reread of Fangirl was an exception?  Have you ever reread a book and liked it better the second time?

9 comments:

  1. There have been quite a few times I've disliked a book the first time and then reread it to find out that it was really good. In many cases for me, I think it's because the first time I read it, I was too immature to pick up on the things that made it good, especially with some longer books. What's a bit more common is when I read a book and really like it, but after a while, I'll look back and think "Why in the world was I so crazy about that book?"

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  2. Yeah, I mean, I'll read a book and just not get into it...I'll put it down then later it catches my eye and suddenly I can't stop reading it, you know?

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  3. Hmm, I've never really tried rereading a book I've hated. Maybe I'll try that!
    Have you read Eleanor and Park by Rainbow Rowell? I just finished it yesterday.

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    1. I got about 2 pages in and had to stop because the swearing was too much for me.

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    2. Yeah, the first pages were really bad. I pushed through and the swearing got better, but it was still there.

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    3. Think I should give it another try?

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    4. It's up to you. I enjoyed it, but I definitely was a bit offended at a few parts. If you do read it, let me know! I would love to know what you think because none of my friends have picked it up and I'm dying to talk about it with someone :P

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    5. I'll think about it. I have so many other books to read right now.

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  4. I've never really reread a book that I haven't liked. I have however reread a book that I liked and felt completely differently the second time. The Forsaken by Lisa M. Stasse is one example. I read it before I started blogging and then the sequel was coming out and I wanted to reread it and review it on my blog before reading the sequel. But after reading The Forsaken again, I was sitting there wondering what I liked so much about it in the first place. I think that maybe I just changed as a reader. The way I look at books has changed since I started blogging. I'm more critical of the writing, the world-building, and the character development now than I ever used to be. So that could be it. Not sure if Fangirl was a fluke or not for you. All I know is that I absolutely loved that book. I haven't read any of the other ones you have mentioned but have heard amazing things about them. I think each person has their own opinion and sometimes it's not a popular one. And that's okay. Everyone in the blogosphere seems to love Horde by Ann Aguirre, but I hated it. Like HATED it. *shrugs* That's okay though. There are plenty of other books out there.

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