Reading is one of my most favorite things to do. Almost everyone knows how to read. However, books can sometimes be complicated and hard to understand. When this happens, one of the things that can be really helpful is to read the book over again. Reading the book over again can allow you to understand it in a more in-depth perspective than you did before. You will be able to perceive new details you didn’t previously notice. Best of all, you get to relive the whole book again. A paper published in the Journal of Consumer Research found rereading offers mental health benefits because it allows more emotional connection and self-reflection instead of the first reading, which is more based and focused on the events and plot of the book. Three books that I decided to read over again were The Son of Neptune, The Lightning Thief, and The Mark of Athena, all by Rick Riordan.

While rereading The Son of Neptune I noticed the tiny details in the book, like the color of someone’s shirt. The orange Camp Half-blood shirts helped me get a better sense of the setting because they seemed to blend in with the morning sun and the happiness of the camp. This helped me enjoy the story more, because I got a better sense of the setting, Camp Half-Blood, from this detail. In addition, I also understood more about the story because I was able to do some independent research into Greek mythology, reading from the school library book that profiled the gods and other mythical creatures.

Vladimir Nabokov once said “Curiously enough, one cannot read a book; one can only reread it. A good reader, a major reader, an active and creative reader is a rereader.” While I don’t agree with Nabakov that ‘one cannot read a book’, I think that he means that rereading is uncovering aspects of the book like themes, and character details, plotting, key moments, and this only happens to readers who are attentive and creative. This shows the power of rereading a book.

This idea enabled me to use my knowledge and refer back to it while rereading parts of the book. I had new perceptions about the personality of the characters. The first time I read the book I felt rushed; the second time was different because I was able to learn the personality of each character and get to know them better. For example, I know more about Percy than I did before; Percy cares a lot about his friends and family and always thinks that he should be the leader. I noticed many new and vital aspects of The Son of Neptune, like when the characters were in Alaska. The details of the setting and the animals described allowed me to expand my senses while reading it for the second time.

Another book that I understood better when I read it again was The Lightning Thief. When I read it the second time I was able to grasp the plot more easily. What affects me most deeply is how Riordan captures the Greek and Roman mythological world and puts it in the modern day, thus enabling me to almost interact with the story. For example, modern day mortals see and interpret things differently from the mythological world because of the Mist. If a Minotaur appeared, mortals might interpret it as a wild bull.

Another book that I really benefited from by reading again was The Mark of Athena. The Mark of Athena includes Greek gods, adding Roman gods, too. The first time I read the book it was very confusing to understand the Roman god personalities. Many of the gods had different personalities as well as names that differed from their Greek side. For example, Dionysus the wine god’s Roman counterpart is named Bacchus. Through rereading, it became easier for me to remember each god’s Greek and Roman personality. I also learned that Riordan often uses small details to lead up to a part of the story that you can predict, if you notice these details. For example, during The Mark of Athena, Piper makes the eidolons swear on the River Styx to not possess anyone on Leo’s boat. However, the eidolons hint that they can still possess others. This helped me understand how the story might be continued on in the House of Hades. My prediction in the forthcoming book, the House of Hades is that the group of demigods will travel to Greece to close the Doors of Death while Percy and Annabeth find the other entrance of the Doors of Death in Tarturus.

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