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How do you remember the books you have read?

(49 Posts)
shabby Wed 17-Sep-14 13:45:01

As I have got older I find that I sometimes have difficulty in recalling the title, author and characters even if I have absolutely loved the book. So I have set myself up a spreadsheet with those details on and a brief resume of the plot. I also rate the book with a star system.

How do you remember what you have read?

Starling Wed 17-Sep-14 13:57:29

I have only really had that problem with books in the same genre by the same author - I usually realise when I start predicting what's going to happen next and then it happens!

penguinpaperback Wed 17-Sep-14 14:24:12

I wonder if it's a problem for a fast reader shabby? Or maybe it's because my books are fairly light reads. I read all Agatha Christie's books in my twenties and then waited until I was in my fifties before I felt I could start to re-read them. Before this I would often remember the plot well before the end of chapter one.
But I am a slow reader!

Agus Wed 17-Sep-14 14:44:43

I don't remember now either shabby. Not only books but songs and singers, composers and music and films and actors!

To solve the problem of re reading a book again, which I often, don't realise, until half way through, I have now started to write 'read' and the date smile

Stansgran Wed 17-Sep-14 14:57:22

I write title ,author and comment for each month and also a resume of life in that month so I have the nearest I will ever get to keeping a diary. I've also put them on a spreadsheet buT I'm a bit behind hand (about a year) . Is this what OCD is? I'm just afraid That one day I might have to rely on someone else for reading matter and I hate rereading. Such a waste of time.

TriciaF Wed 17-Sep-14 15:08:24

I often re-read books. In fact I have about 10-20 books that I've read several times, or keep dipping into.
eg Pickwick papers, 3 Men in a Boat, Diary of a Nobody, On Broadway, Chekov Short Stories etc.
I used to read a bigger variety, when I belonged to a library, but impossible now we're in France.
I buy books often from Amazon though.
So currently remember by re-reading!

joannapiano Wed 17-Sep-14 15:19:44

As a small child, rather than comfort eat, I comfort read. We only had a limited number of books and most were my friends. In bad times I turned to them.
I still keep a small number of books in my bedside table and reread them when I am stressed. They include books from my childhood, including ones by Katherine L Oldmeadow from the 30's and 40's I found on Amazon.
I'm a bit under the weather at the moment and am rereading Before I Go To Sleep, as the film is now out.

janeainsworth Wed 17-Sep-14 15:55:21

Joanna I know what you mean about comfort reading. My favourite is Barbara Pym. Nothing horrible happens in her novels (except for one character who is standing in the wrong place at the wrong time in an Eastern European country), but her prose is beautiful and her humour and observation very subtle.

shysal Wed 17-Sep-14 16:11:31

For library books I take with me an indexed notebook where I record the author, title and marks out of 10. It makes choosing more books much easier. It is annoying to start reading a story only to realize that you have read it before. I never re-read a novel.

numberplease Wed 17-Sep-14 16:28:38

I read, and then read again, the synopsis on the back, then if I`m still not sure if I`ve read it, I don`t buy it. I have slipped up a few times in the last couple of years and bought books that I`d read before. It would be difficult to keep a written record of books read, because I go through so many.

Agus Wed 17-Sep-14 17:07:53

I have a good idea of some of the books I have read over the years but couldn't possibly remember all of them.

I too have read so many number. 2/3 a week at one point but nothing like that amount now.

penguinpaperback Wed 17-Sep-14 17:18:17

I love re reading novels, short stories. Barbara Pym, Elizabeth Taylor, many of the Persephone authors, especially Dorothy Whipple and Mollie Panter-Downes.

janerowena Wed 17-Sep-14 17:44:37

I don't remember, until I have the first page in front of me. I read a lot of books. Now I tend to use kindle only for book club, that way I have a store that I can refer to so that I don't choose the same books for us again. Last night the hostess held up 8 books to see which we were the most likely to be interested in, and we had already read two of them, but she had forgotten!

Starling Wed 17-Sep-14 18:31:59

I like the comfort reading/re-reading idea. I have also (*TriciaF*) re-read Three Men in a Boat as a comfort read. When I was a child I re-read What Katy Did a few times. When I was pregnant I re-read all the Jane Austens!
(Also when breastfeeding I thought I read an Alice Walker but have just checked the plots of the two possibles and remember neither!!)

penguinpaperback Wed 17-Sep-14 19:18:31

I remember a hot summer, a couple of weeks before giving birth, sitting outside reading Lark Rise to Candleford and The Wind in the Willows.
Dr Hugh Jolly's Baby Book throughout breast feeding.

granjura Wed 17-Sep-14 19:48:27

I am very very careful now- as I've been duped in the past by the publishers, who regularly change the cover of books to make us believe it is a new book. Been caught out a couple of times- but won't happen again. I'll always read the sinopsis and the first and second page before buying.

NanKate Wed 17-Sep-14 19:56:53

Penguin 'The Wind in the Willows' is one of my favourite books so I was pleased this summer when my 2 grandsons came to stay so that we could take them to the Rowing Museum in Henley on Thames where there is a lovely W in the W exhibition with moving characters, a small caravan that Toady travelled in that was open for my two boys to play in. They were a bit frightened when we walked through the dark Wild Wood where you could see the red eyes of the stoats in the wall and if you pressed a button the wind would blow down on you.

The children must have gone round the exhibition at least 6 times and visited the room with all W in the W related games (only available for the summer hols).

It was such a successful trip, however, as we were leaving the 3 and a half year old said 'when are we going to see W in the W' !! hmm

Finally I keep a notebook listing all the books I read with a brief synopsis of the story and I grade it out of 10.

Elegran Wed 17-Sep-14 19:59:13

How do I remember them? Not at all well. I have more than once tried to order a book on Amazon for the Kindle, only to be told that I bought it last year.

Once I start to read a book, though, I recognise it if I have read it before.

penguinpaperback Wed 17-Sep-14 21:13:04

How exciting for your grandsons NanKate. The red eyes of the stoats would probably frighten me. smile Every Christmas I re-read the Dulce Domum chapter.

NanKate Wed 17-Sep-14 21:48:26

Yes we all loved it Penguin. My eldest GS dressed up as Toad and his 18 month old brother wore goggles and a hat whilst clinging onto the wheel of Toad's car. We enjoyed it so much we went back 2 days later as the entrance ticket lasts for a year. We have promised the boys they can go back next Spring.

Finally Penguin did you choose your name because you enjoy reading so much ?

penguinpaperback Wed 17-Sep-14 21:53:01

Yes I did NanKate smile

rosesarered Wed 17-Sep-14 22:11:41

Nankate took my DGS last Summer to this, it's still going on then?He liked it too but was a little old for it really. [Henley.]In case you wonder what I am going on about!
I never used to write down 'books read' but now do all the time in a special book bought just for the purpose.I give them an asterisk if I think I could re-read them, and put a cross by all the ones I haven't really liked.
I used to remember easily any book plot, but not now. Bought 'My Driver' by Maggie Gee for my Kindle last month, read it, and the other day could hardly recall any of it [oh dear.]So have begun reading it again [it's very good, how could I have forgotten it so soon?] Losing the old marbles methinks.

NanKate Thu 18-Sep-14 06:58:44

Roses do you find when you reread a favourite book that you enjoy it as much the second time around ? Recently I started to read a fav book read about 20 years ago and it had just lost its sparkle and seemed so out of date that I gave up on it. It is me who has changed.

Mishap Thu 18-Sep-14 07:14:42

One of the joys of getting older is that you can enjoy books all over again, having forgotten that you have read them before! Twice the pleasure!

kittylester Thu 18-Sep-14 07:20:43

How do any of you find time to list the books you've read!confused