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What's your "comfort" read?

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I've got a few books which I have read many times: beautiful, dependable books, which I actually look forward to reading again. I find I get more out of the writing each time.

 

I usually wait about 2/3 years between reads, because the distance allows the story, characters and plot to fade enough for it to be enjoyable to read all over again! :)

 

Larry's Party, by Carole Shields is one; The Shipping News or Accordion Crimes by E Annie Proulx are some more. And well, anything at all by Bill Bryson!

 

Am I the only one who has "comfort" reads?

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Comfort reading? The only book that I have that falls anywhere near to this is "The Heart of Rock & Soul" by Dave Marsh. I have mentioned it in the thread on Top 10 books, but briefly, the author writes about his favourite 1,001 singles (most of which are either rock or soul, natch). The book must have been written almost 20 years ago, so it doesn't include anything after the mid 80s - but I don't think there's much from the last 20 years that would be good enough to compete with Marsh's list anyway!

 

It's a book that I can dip into at any time, just read a couple of reviews, and feel inspired to have a listen to something I haven't heard for a while.

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Generally i have a pile of books waiting to be read, and just dive into the next one.

Occasionally, when a book is due to arrive from one of my postal bookgroups and I can't afford to get invoved in anything long, I will pick up a whodunnit from the first half of the 20th century, such as an Agatha Christie or Dorothy L. Sayers.

 

Otherwise I browse through one of my collection of cookery books!

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The authors I tend to turn to when I'm fed up and want something familiar, that I'm sure to enjoy are Jane Austen, Nick Hornby, Terry Prattchet and Robert Llewellyn, (If the name seems familiar, he was Kryten in Red Dwarf)

 

They are all somehow an easy, reliable, warm and funny read, whatever mood I'm in, and how ever little concentration I have.

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:o Oooops, I've made a new member error, it seems.....having started this thread myself, I see that there is already a "re-reading" thread, so can I direct other members to it? It has a lot of interesting comments on it.

 

Thankfully we're virtual, so you can't see me blush :P

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Don't know how I missed this thread before. :rolleyes: I have a number of books I constantly re-read as comfort books. Depending on how I'm feeling it might be Georgette Heyer, or Ellis Peters, or Terry Pratchett, or Dorothy Sayers - all books I first read years ago, and have read countless times since.

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I'd like to nominate just about anything Barbara Pym wrote into the equation and EF Benson's Lucia novels. Both of them are brilliant at skewering human behaviour. You can really empathise with some of the characters and then you keep finding people with some of the characteristics. They also make you laugh out loud.

 

Also often re-read Susan Stone's quartet of Oversea and Under Stone. Love them. They make the CS Lewis books look mawkish. Also Philip Pullman - strange how these so called children's books have the ability to grip you time after time.

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Two guaranteed lifters for me: The Third Policeman by Flann O'Brien (because it's so crazy as to make anything that's happening pale in comparison) and The Memory Palace by Christie Dickason ( because it has moments that transport you to wonderful events)

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For me it would be the Harry Potter books occasionally, they bore me a bit they are entertaining. Then it would be the Windsinger series and a great book called Plague by Malcom Rose. Then the Spike Milligan war memoirs. Very funny :)

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I always find that the worst thing to do is to read in bed. If a book is good then you will stimulate your brain and cannot get to sleep. Therefore I suggest Piers Morgan's new tome for bedtime reading. As for rereading books I recently went through a stage of trawling my memory for books I read as a young child to re-read and was surprised how many were out of print. These included books by Geoffrey Trease who apparently once sold books by the lorry load.

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i have to say i read most of my books over and over again :P My family thinks i'm weird.. but well.. *shrugs* Some of these books include 'Rosie Dunne', 'Mates, Dates series' and 'Harry Potter series' ;) somehow after i re-read them, i get more information from it than before :D

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reading Room with a View for comfort, someone bought it for me when I was in the philosophical dumps after reading too much Sartre and Camus and it was a breathe of fresh air.

 

When I was a kid I read Fantastic Mr Fox over and over again. Even now, I love rereading some Terry Pratchett when I'm at my parents for christmas, and this year I rediscovered the Little House books - especially Little House in the Big Woods with all the descriptions of making food and all things-woodland-wilderness related.

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Most of my comfort reads are comic strip collections - I apply "Bloom County" and "Zits" and "Calvin and Hobbes" and "The Far Side" liberally to heartache. But as for actual reads, again I have to go with humor: "The Gallery of Regrettable Food" and "Interior Desecrations" by James Lileks. They still occasionally make me laugh out loud.

 

My comfort reads aren't all the books I reread from time to time, but the ones I pick out special whenever I need a little lift.

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Generally I read Jasper Fforde, but I also like the following to get me through tough times, sleepless nights and worries.

 

Bridget Jones

The Poison Study trilogy

Moonstone - Wilkie Collins (audio)

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I don't know about comfort reads. I'm not a re-reader so don't tend to go back to particular books at times of stress. However, there are certain authors who are just pure escapism. I'm thinking particularly of the one I'm reading right now, P. G. Wodehouse.

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Generally books from my childhood:

 

Over Sea Under Stone by Susan Cooper

The Trebizon Series by Ann Digby

The Wind In The Willows By Kenneth Graham

 

Work has been so busy lately (70+ hours a week) I haven't had any time for reading at all.

 

:(

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For me, it's murder mysteries. When things are overwhelming, at work or in the holidays, that's what I turn to. I like them other times as well, but in less stressful times, I can also enjoy other kinds of literature.

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I don't re-read as a rule. As a child I did read Ludo & The Star Horse several times. Nowadays I tend to read easy crime stories if I'm in the mood for something light and "comforting". Agatha Christie for example.

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My comfort read is Austen. It's familiar and well written with a happy ending. I have some tiny hardbacks and I always chuck one in if I'm going on a longish holiday, so I have a guaranteed good read with me.

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My comfort read is crime fiction in its various forms except for the very hardboiled U.S. stuff. I can happily switch from P D James to Henning Mankell to Mark Billingham and occasionally to the pre-war doyens like Margery Allingham.

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My comfort reads are crime thrillers - if I want something less challenging or an easier read, I'll pick up whichever is newest - Lee Child, Peter Robinson etc. I don't tend to re-read books - unless it's years later.

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