I recently did a sweep on my book shelves because my two book cases weren't enough to hold all the books I owned. I have piles on the floor in front of my smaller bookcase and a few other books scattered throughout my house and as much as I love books, I also realized that I needed space! So I gave away books that I knew I wouldn't get around to or books that I have read but didn't strike me as "must haves". I donated all of my books to the library and that was a good feeling, knowing those books would go to a reader who would love them.
But that's not why I'm writing this post. As I was making piles of books to keep and give away, I came across my copy of Hush, Hush. We all know Hush, Hush right?
I first read this book in 2009* and I REALLY enjoyed it. At the time. Now five years later, as I was deciding what to keep and what to donate, I wondered if I still liked this book. I certainly didn't LUV IT like I initially had all those years ago but I was curious. So I quickly reread the book.
And found that I didn't like it much. I wasn't even a fan of the romance that once seemed so edgy, so dangerously awesome.
Despite half a decade**, I still remembered everything that happened in this book before I even reread it. Patch and Nora hadn't changed a bit. But I had. Hush, Hush wasn't the enticing read I once found it to be. I remembered my gushing review that I wrote for it and I admit that I'm a little embarrassed to read it now but my feelings as a reader then were true. That review was a snapshot of what I liked five years ago.
Five years ago, my reading taste was different. Nowadays? I like other books so much more. Books like Seraphina, Grave Mercy, Devil in Winter, or Silent in the Grave. Just to name a few. (And yes, I did just shamelessly link my reviews onto this post ;D so read them if you haven't already, haha***.) As I've grown older, I find that my reading taste has changed along with other things. Which I know NOW is completely natural and to be expected.
When I was taking classes at my community college, an English professor of mine was lecturing on I don't even know what at this point but he said something that has stuck with me: "We don't read literature, literature reads us." I don't know if someone else said that or if it came from him but I love the simplicity and truth behind that statement. I found it an apt description for what I feel as a reader. Sometimes our favorite books will no longer be our favorites or they will remain favorites because we still connect to them time after time. So that is what I learned when I randomly decided to clean out my shelves. Have you grown out of any books? Have you ever had epiphanies like this when it comes to reading? Or just life in general?
If you're wondering, Hush, hush did go into the donate pile. No regrets about that. May it find a better home on someone else's shelf.
*I cannot BELIEVE it's been 5 years already. I was still a teen back then.
**Dear god, I feel OLD.
*** You don't HAVE to, of course. But the option's there. ;)
Note: This post isn't intended as an insult to the author of this book by any means. I am merely using this book as an example to explain how people, not books, change. There are other books that I could name but this was the book that happened to be chosen due to recent memory. I also think that everyone has the right to read what they want and if they like it or not, that is fine either way. Variety is the spice of life and all that jazz ;P