Yesterday, I finished re-reading my favorite book, Mystery by Peter Straub. I’ve read this book almost-yearly since its release, which means I’ve read it nearly 25 times. (Which means I’m quite old.)
What keeps me coming back? I notice something new each and every time. This time around, I gave more attention to Sarah Spence’s mother. This ditzy social climber uses her daughter to try to reach the highest level of society on the island nation of Mill Walk. But is she really a ditz? Or does she use this as a facade? We know that she came from Mill Walk, went to college in Iowa for a couple of years, met her husband there, and returned to Mill Walk upon her marriage. Her husband was hired by one of the island’s wealthiest patriarchs as an accountant, and the Spence family’s social ambitions soared. But why was Bill Spence, a non-islander, hired in the first place? And why was he instantly successful? Is there some sort of connection between Mrs. Spence and her husband’s employer?
Perhaps I’m over-thinking it a bit. But after 25 or so readings, you get into the minutiae. Do you tend to re-read favorite books, or are you of a once-and-done mindset?