#TopTenTuesday: Re-reading 5-star Books Like It Was the First Time!

So, we’re back with another Top Ten Tuesday, a weekly meme hosted by Jana @ That Artsy Reader Girl. This week’s prompt is: Books I Wish I Could Read Again for the First Time.

I don’t even know if this title makes sense… But I decided to twist the prompt a little today, so instead of books that I wish I could read again for the first time, I decided to look at books I rated 5-stars but can’t remember much about anymore, and so if I re-read them it would be like reading them for the first time (again)! That’s a mouthful and I think the title sounds much better than what I just said (maybe)? 😂

Anyway, I feel like I harp on a lot about how bad my memory is and well, it’s true! Lol, I tend to easily forget book details, especially if I read them quickly or I don’t take the time to properly let my thoughts/feelings settle before moving onto the next book. I read most of these before I started writing reviews, so despite giving them all 5-stars, you can probably imagine just how little I remember about these titles!

I feel like I might’ve done a similar post sort of recently (perhaps in the last year?) but I can’t remember… So we’re just gonna roll with it! Without further ado…

THE NAME OF THE WIND

Told in Kvothe’s own voice, this is the tale of the magically gifted young man who grows to be the most notorious wizard his world has ever seen.

The intimate narrative of his childhood in a troupe of traveling players, his years spent as a near-feral orphan in a crime-ridden city, his daringly brazen yet successful bid to enter a legendary school of magic, and his life as a fugitive after the murder of a king form a gripping coming-of-age story unrivaled in recent literature.

A high-action story written with a poet’s hand, The Name of the Wind is a masterpiece that will transport readers into the body and mind of a wizard.

I read this well before I even learned of the massive online book community and adult fantasy was still quite new to me, but I remember being absolutely taken in by the world and characters. I was enchanted by the magic and I loved Kvothe! It’d probably be about 85% new to me if I read it again?


The girl with all the gifts

Melanie is a very special girl. Dr. Caldwell calls her “our little genius.”

Every morning, Melanie waits in her cell to be collected for class. When they come for her, Sergeant Parks keeps his gun pointing at her while two of his people strap her into the wheelchair. She thinks they don’t like her. She jokes that she won’t bite, but they don’t laugh.

Melanie loves school. She loves learning about spelling and sums and the world outside the classroom and the children’s cells. She tells her favorite teacher all the things she’ll do when she grows up. Melanie doesn’t know why this makes Miss Justineau look sad.

The Girl with All the Gifts is a sensational thriller, perfect for fans of Stephen King, Justin Cronin, and Neil Gaiman.

I remember being surprised by how emotional this made me and how invested I became in Melanie’s story. This was not at all what I was expecting but I recall very little about their journey. I remember being terrified (I mean, zombies—who wouldn’t be terrified?) but on re-read this would be 98% new to me?


mistborn trilogy

What if the whole world were a dead, blasted wasteland?

Mistborn
For a thousand years the ash fell and no flowers bloomed. For a thousand years the Skaa slaved in misery and lived in fear. For a thousand years the Lord Ruler, the “Sliver of Infinity,” reigned with absolute power and ultimate terror, divinely invincible. Then, when hope was so long lost that not even its memory remained, a terribly scarred, heart-broken half-Skaa rediscovered it in the depths of the Lord Ruler’s most hellish prison. Kelsier “snapped” and found in himself the powers of a Mistborn. A brilliant thief and natural leader, he turned his talents to the ultimate caper, with the Lord Ruler himself as the mark.

Kelsier recruited the underworld’s elite, the smartest and most trustworthy allomancers, each of whom shares one of his many powers, and all of whom relish a high-stakes challenge. Then Kelsier reveals his ultimate dream, not just the greatest heist in history, but the downfall of the divine despot.

But even with the best criminal crew ever assembled, Kel’s plan looks more like the ultimate long shot, until luck brings a ragged girl named Vin into his life. Like him, she’s a half-Skaa orphan, but she’s lived a much harsher life. Vin has learned to expect betrayal from everyone she meets. She will have to learn trust if Kel is to help her master powers of which she never dreamed.

I think I read this around the same time I read Name of the Wind and I was still new to adult fantasy. I remember it being slow but the next thing I knew, I was deeply invested in the characters and loving their journeys. I read the trilogy back-to-back and now only remember minor details… It’d probably be 90% new to me on re-read!


american gods

Days before his release from prison, Shadow’s wife, Laura, dies in a mysterious car crash. Numbly, he makes his way back home. On the plane, he encounters the enigmatic Mr Wednesday, who claims to be a refugee from a distant war, a former god and the king of America.

Together they embark on a profoundly strange journey across the heart of the USA, whilst all around them a storm of preternatural and epic proportions threatens to break.

Scary, gripping and deeply unsettling, American Gods takes a long, hard look into the soul of America. You’ll be surprised by what – and who – it finds there…

I picked this up immediately after reading Neverwhere, my first and favourite Gaiman. I was living in this mad world that Neil Gaiman created and I loved it so much. That said, I have forgotten a lot of details… I feel like I’d recall details as I read but it’d still probably be 85% new to me?


under the dome

On an entirely normal, beautiful fall day in Chester’s Mill, Maine, the town is inexplicably and suddenly sealed off from the rest of the world by an invisible force field. Planes crash into it and fall from the sky in flaming wreckage, a gardener’s hand is severed as “the dome” comes down on it, people running errands in the neighboring town are divided from their families, and cars explode on impact. No one can fathom what this barrier is, where it came from, and when—or if—it will go away.

Dale Barbara, Iraq vet and now a short-order cook, finds himself teamed with a few intrepid citizens—town newspaper owner Julia Shumway, a physician’s assistant at the hospital, a selectwoman, and three brave kids. Against them stands Big Jim Rennie, a politician who will stop at nothing—even murder—to hold the reins of power, and his son, who is keeping a horrible secret in a dark pantry. But their main adversary is the Dome itself. Because time isn’t just short. It’s running out.

This was my first Stephen King book and I read it in 2010/11? I actually remember not being intimidated by this chonkster and I think I sped through it pretty quickly. It wasn’t supernatural ghost horror so that was fine but I do remember being really grossed out by some scenes. It’d be 98% new to me on re-read though!


graceling

In a world where people born with an exceptional skill, known as a Grace, are both feared and exploited, Katsa carries the burden of a skill even she despises: the Grace of killing.

Feared by the court and shunned by those her own age, the darkness of her Grace casts a heavy shadow over Katsa’s life. Yet she remains defiant: when the King of Lienid’s father is kidnapped she investigates, and stumbles across a mystery. Who would want to kidnap the old man, and why? And who was the extraordinary Graced man whose fighting abilities rivalled her own?

The only thing Katsa is sure of is that she no longer wants to kill. The intrigue around this kidnapping offers her a way out – but little does she realise, when she takes it, that something insidious and dark lurks behind the mystery. Something spreading from the shadowy figure of a one-eyed king… 

I honsetly didn’t even remember this book was on my Goodreads? I don’t remember a single thing about it and even the synopsis doesn’t ring any kind of bell for me. I think this would easily be a ‘new read’ for me if I decided to read it again at some point in time…


TUESDAYS WITH MORRIE

Maybe it was a grandparent, or a teacher or a colleague. Someone older, patient and wise, who understood you when you were young and searching, and gave you sound advice to help you make your way through it. For Mitch Albom, that person was Morrie Schwartz, his college professor from nearly twenty years ago.

Maybe, like Mitch, you lost track of this mentor as you made your way, and the insights faded. Wouldn’t you like to see that person again, ask the bigger questions that still haunt you?

Mitch Albom had that second chance. He rediscovered Morrie in the last months of the older man’s life. Knowing he was dying of ALS – or motor neurone disease – Mitch visited Morrie in his study every Tuesday, just as they used to back in college. Their rekindled relationship turned into one final ‘class’: lessons in how to live.

 

I remember first coming across this book when I was in high school (I think I was a freshman) but it was one of those books that everyoen talked about having read, even if they hadn’t read it. I did read it and I remember crying over it but it would be 100% new to me if I read it now! I remember nothing 🙈


ripper

In a world where people born with an exceptional skill, known as a Grace, are both feared and exploited, Katsa carries the burden of a skill even she despises: the Grace of killing.

Feared by the court and shunned by those her own age, the darkness of her Grace casts a heavy shadow over Katsa’s life. Yet she remains defiant: when the King of Lienid’s father is kidnapped she investigates, and stumbles across a mystery. Who would want to kidnap the old man, and why? And who was the extraordinary Graced man whose fighting abilities rivalled her own?

The only thing Katsa is sure of is that she no longer wants to kill. The intrigue around this kidnapping offers her a way out – but little does she realise, when she takes it, that something insidious and dark lurks behind the mystery. Something spreading from the shadowy figure of a one-eyed king… 

I had no idea who Isabel Allende was when my friend leant me her copy of this book so I had no idea this book was the first in a different genre for her. I don’t remember that much about it but I do remember being sucked in and enjoying Allende’s writing. I was so impressed and I was disappointed that there weren’t more thrillers by Allende… This would probably be 98% new to me if I re-read it?


This was my first (and only until now) Karin Slaughter book and I was wowed. It is pretty dark and well, if you’re not good with blood, gore and other very gruesome/grisly details, this won’t be for you. What I do remember is that it was disturbingly dark and twisty but I loved every second of it. I think it’d be like 95% new to me if I re-read it.


natchez burning trilogy

Growing up in the rural Southern hamlet of Natchez, Mississippi, Penn Cage learned everything he knows about honor and duty from his father, Tom Cage. But now the beloved family doctor is accused of murdering Viola Turner, the beautiful nurse with whom he worked in the early 1960s. A fighter who has always stood for justice, Penn is determined to save his father.

The quest for answers sends Penn deep into the past—into the heart of a conspiracy of greed and murder involving the Double Eagles, a vicious KKK crew headed by one of the wealthiest and most powerful men in the state. Now Penn must follow a bloody trail that stretches back forty years, to one undeniable fact: no one—black or white, young or old, brave or not—is ever truly safe.

This trilogy is actually one of my favourite mystery/thrillers but I have forgotten so many details that I feel like a fraud claiming it’s a favourite. I’m pretty sure that if I re-read this it’ll feel 90% new to me (probably). That said, I was so impressed by this series? I don’t read a lot of this genre but I do remember this being nauseatingly terrifying and heartbreaking and I had a very hard time putting it down!

I realise that most of the lasting impressions I have of these books were how they made me feel but I wish I was better at remembering details about what made me love them so much! What book(s) did you rate 5-stars but remember so little of they could be ‘first time reads’ on re-read? Or is this just me? 😂

57 thoughts on “#TopTenTuesday: Re-reading 5-star Books Like It Was the First Time!

  1. I have the same problem- I often forget details! I think because we read so many books. Yeah I’ll go with that. 🙂

    Graceling! I remember those coming out around the time I started blogging. and Tuesdays with Morrie is on our living room table right now. 🙂

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    1. I totally agree with you—I think the more books we read the more likely it is that we won’t remember all the details, right? 😉 I think I need to give Tuesdays with Morrie a re-read soon!

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    1. I have ‘grand’ plans to do a “re-reading 5-star books series” on the blog but it’s very ambitious considering how terrible I am at re-reading things BUT I think Mistborn would be one of the first books I’d read! 😄

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    1. I’m so envious you can remember all that! There have been rare occasions that I put down books I start re-reading cos I already know what’s gonna happen as it all starts coming back to me while I read, but I really wish I remembered more 😂

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    1. I haven’t! I had plans to after finishing the book but then it never came out in the bookstores here in Indonesia (and this was before Book Depository etc.) so I Just never got round to it. I’d like to though! Have you read it?

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  2. I feel like it has been forever that I read Tuesdays with Morrie, even though I’m sure it was just maybe two years? I remember that I liked it but I don’t really know anymore what the important lessons were.

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  3. I always wonder if I will like my 5 stars reads from 5+ years ago. I’ve changed so much as a reader I can totally imagine not loving some of them as much. I also don’t remember anything about Graceling lol! But I’m that way about all fantasy books.

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    1. I’ve been thinking lately of doing a “re-reading my 5-star reads” series on the blog but it’s super ambitious and I don’t think I can tackle it this year but I’d love to give it a go next year or something. I think it’ll be fun! 😃

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  4. I am with you here! I have a lot of books that I can recall a lot of details on and others that I can’t remember a single thing about – even books I rate highly. You have me curious to go back and look at my 5-star reads now.

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    1. Haha I am thinking of doing a re-reading series on the blog but I already am so bad at re-reading books I don’t know if it’ll work out. I think it’ll be fun to look back on some of those titles and see what I think of them now though! 😂

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  5. I definitely relate to forgetting a lot about a book pretty quickly… but hey, it means we can re-read books and have them be almost new and that’s pretty cool so 🙂 I’d also love to re-read Graceling, I remember loving it, but not much else.

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    1. Haha, that’s absolutely true! It really would be like reading a new book but I’m so terrible at re-reading cos there are just so many new books I want to read! I think I’m gonna do a re-reading series on the blog at some point though and I think that’ll be quite fun 😃

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  6. Same! My memory is so bad sometimes, especially when it comes to those book details you talked about. The Mistborn series is one that I really don’t remember much about although I know I loved it, which was amazing since I’m not into fantasy. I would read it again for the first time if that were possible!

    Happy TTT!

    Susan
    http://www.blogginboutbooks.com

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    1. Glad to know I’m not the only one (actually it’s been comforting to read these comments and have almost everyone say the same thing, haha)! I’ve heard a lot of people say the same thing about the Mistborn series—I do remember it was pretty epic 🙂 I’m definitely hoping to re-read it again at some point!

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    1. I read it just before the series came out (and before I even knew it was being made into a series) and I remember really enjoying it but so many details are just *whoosh*—gone! 😂 Thanks for stopping by my post!

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  7. Oh, you’re not alone! I forget so much of what I read. And I think you’re probably right about it being because I move on so quickly to the next book. Your twist this week is making me want to take a look at my five-star reads to see which ones I’ve completely forgotten. 😉

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    1. It’s really comforting to hear I’m not alone with forgetting book details 😂 This twisting of the prompt has made me realise how little I remember about many of my 5-star reads, especially if it’s been a few years!

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  8. I love your take on this week’s topic and that is how some of my books ended up on today’s list too, LOL! I do have a hard time remembering a lot of details about books because I am a fast reader. They say when you write review’s wait a few days to let the book settle, but if I don’t write it when I finish it I struggle to find details, LOL! Here is my link if you are interested in popping over: https://cindysbookcorner.blogspot.com/2021/08/top-ten-tuesday-reread-for-first-time.html

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    1. Glad to know I’m not alone in this, LOL! I think going through books quickly does have a big impact on how much I retain (and for how long), at least I find that it is for me! But when I try to read slower I really have to push myself to slow down and it’s just no fun 😅 I also have to write my review immediately after finishing or I at least have to word vom all my thoughts/feelings down otherwise, like you said, it’s just gone! Thanks for stopping by my post 😊

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  9. This is certainly making me want to get through my TBR pile because a few of these are on there for first time around, so knowing you really loved them makes me want to get to them even quicker. Great post.

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    1. I didn’t realise Graceling was such an oldie, and well, I didn’t even realise I read it so that’s something 😂 I hope you enjoy Mistborn whenever you get the chance to pick it up!

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    1. I think the Natchez Burning series is so underrated? Or at least, in the book community circles I’m part of it’s never mentioned but I love it so much! I think the third book came out a fair bit after the second in the series but it wraps up really well! I would recommend it 🙂

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  10. Mistborn starts SO SLOW, Dini. T_T This is, I think, my third or fourth attempt at reading it. I’ve switched to audiobook. It’s going a lot better now. I think I might actually make it this time! My brother-in-law said the same thing you did, though, about it being slow and then all of a sudden he was hooked and read the whole series lol. So I’m crossing my fingers.

    I still need to read The Name of the Wind, but I figured since I’m already this far behind, I might as well just wait until the trilogy is finished and read them all at once lol.

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    1. Are you giving it a go again right now, Sammie? I hope the audiobook is working for you! I was thinking of maybe starting a re-read of it towards the end of the year or maybe first thing next year… So maybe if you’re still having a time slogging through it by then, we can buddy read it (if you even want to look at it or think about it anymore lol)? Fingers crossed for you, friend! ❤️

      And yeah, definitely the same feels about Name of the Wind! I’ll re-read that book when I know for sure the third one is coming out soon(ish) haha

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      1. … don’t hate me. I TRIED to give it a go with the audiobook, but I got right about where I quit last time and just sent the audiobook back haha. I can’t follow it when I’m listening. I need to just sit down and power through the ebook, I think. That’s the only way this is going to work. xD Oh, a buddy read would be fantastic! End of this year/beginning of next works great. Hopefully that would motivate me to get through it haha. :3

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  11. Yay to prompt twins lol! Apart from Mistborn (which would definitely be like reading for the first time) I’ve not actually read most of this list… Graceling sounds amazing though & I’ll definitely be adding a few of the others onto my TBR 😀

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    1. I’m kinda gutted I don’t remember more about Mistborn tbh cos I do remember reading it and enjoying the heck out of it! 😅 Ah well, at least I can read it like it’s the first time again whenever I decide to re-read it! LOL

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  12. What a fascinating mix of books.

    “The Name of the Wind” sounds interesting, even though that is not usually my genre.

    I always wanted to read “American Gods”. Maybe one day.

    “Tuesdays with Morrie” is a great book, very inspirational.

    I haven’t read “Ripper” but I love Isabel Allende. will have to put that on my wishlist.

    Thanks for visiting my TTT earlier.

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    1. I guess you can say I have very eclectic book tastes and I do read a good mix of everything! 😂 I had no idea Allende wasn’t a thriller writer when I read Ripper cos I enjoyed it so much and I was disappointed she didn’t have more of them! I hope you enjoy it if you do pick it up 🙂

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      1. I love and read all sorts of books, the bigger the better, the more complicated the better. Even though I’m not a huge thriller fan, I would probably read the book because I think Isabel Allende is a great author.

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  13. I’d love to read The Name of the Wind again like the first time but then I would read book 2 and then be mad all over again that it just ends there!

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      1. I am constantly on the lookout for news about the next book… it feels like I have been waiting my whole damn life haha! That cliff-hanger.. ahhhh!!!

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