Submitted by foulbeastly t3_12112pg in books

I will always remember reading Station Eleven in my room in the first several weeks of Covid lockdown, and I doubt I would have enjoyed The Troop by Nick Cutter as much had I read it anywhere else than at night in my tent on my first camping trip. Last winter during a particularly brutal snowstorm in late February I read The Shining in the span of a few days. Do you ever do this? What was your favorite reading experience like?



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Catsandscotch t1_jdjx2c3 wrote

It's not the kind of thing I do deliberately, but I do enjoy it when I happen to find myself reading a book during the season it takes place. Or even just reading on a stormy day and the book is describing a stormy day. A couple of months ago I started a book where it used the dates at the beginning of each chapter and it just so happened I was starting it on the exact day the book started. Kinda fun coincidence.

The one time I did it deliberately, I listened to the audio book of How Paris Became Paris while I walked around Paris. It was an amazing experience. It's also a really good book. I recommend it even if you aren't planning to go to Paris any time soon.


PumpkinPieIsGreat t1_jdlge8p wrote

That "exact day" thing has happened to me when I played ace attorney. It really is a cool coincidence!


BinstonBirchill t1_jdjw4fi wrote

I read Moby Dick at 40 based on an article talking about that being the best age to read it. I think there’s some truth to it. Younger readers can understand it too but it does take a certain mindset going in and some reflection afterwards.


millera85 t1_jdksevh wrote

At 15, did not enjoy it at all. At 36, thought it was a masterpiece. But that goes for so many books. Anna Karenina at 12? Was underwhelmed. At 30? Was both enchanted and devastated. When I read Tess of the D’Urbervilles as a kid, I found it dull and it made so little impact on me that I barely remembered anything apart from it being depressing, having a sad ending, and a rough outline of the plot. I read it again when I was like 26 and it utterly destroyed me, to the point where I thought of it constantly for like a month.


Aware-Mammoth-6939 t1_jdn6imw wrote

This is very true, but Madame Bovary was such a miserable experience, I don't think I'll go back to Flaubert.


ragingliberty t1_jdk1pen wrote

I’m 40 now, and I haven’t read that since high school. You’ve inspired me to read it this year.


BinstonBirchill t1_jdk36t2 wrote

Nice! It’s only I’ll be returning to before long for many reasons. There’s a good podcast that has an episode worth listening to as well. The Great American Novel podcast.


Seby0815 t1_jdln4sp wrote

Yeah. My father told me once "You never read the same book twice, because you are a diffrent person every time you read it." And I think its true.


ragingliberty t1_jdk1lqm wrote

A friend of my family, a Russian woman who is now 102, told me to read War & Peace once every decade of life. She said it would have a totally different effect. I read it at 20, again at 37, and I’ll give it another go at 45 or so. The experience at 37 was so much different and better than at 20. I’d like to do the same with Les Miserables.


Estudiier t1_jdl73xi wrote

I found that with reading To Kill a Mockingbird. I learned more each time.


PumpkinPieIsGreat t1_jdlgiav wrote

I still haven't read it. I definitely need to try it out. I even got the movie because Gregory Peck was a great actor. But I will need to read the book first.


groovygruver t1_jdlh9ty wrote

This is the next book I’m reading. I’m 25. Just got into literature and have thouroughly enjoyed Notes from Undergroud and the brothers k by Dostoevsky so far. Time to pay Tolstoy his respect as well


ragingliberty t1_jdm3ok5 wrote

Go for it! Have you read Crime and Punishment?


groovygruver t1_jdnei9o wrote

Just realized I said literature above when I meant to say Russian literature. I have not but it will most like be my next Dostoyevsky book!


frotefrote t1_jdjvsbs wrote

Hell yeah! I read Camus’ The Plague at the beginning of covid lockdowns, and boy was it A RIDE. It actually eased some of my anxieties about the whole pandemic thing, a bit cathartic I might say.


PleasantSalad t1_jdkrsto wrote

I'm saving the overstory, the invention of nature, wild and a john muir collection for the summer when I'll be backpacking the Appalachian trail and working remotely from remote cabins in the northeast.

I'm so excited! Any other recommendations would be great!


New_Helicopter_3993 t1_jdlatll wrote

The Wild Trees by Richard Preston. It would probably be more fitting for the Pacific Crest Trail, but I think you'd appreciate it anyway.


PleasantSalad t1_jdnxyb8 wrote

I'm not too picky about location. Wild takes place on the PCT and John muir's writings are mostly northwest focused. It's more about the feeling of being in nature I guess. The vibe not necessarily the location.


imspooky t1_jdm18ko wrote

I bought The Overstory in a small bookshop in Guerneville. First time seeing the Redwoods. Seemed appropriate.


Fish-Additional t1_jdm0rka wrote

A walk in the woods by Bill Bryson! Also a really great audiobook


PleasantSalad t1_jdnxhow wrote

ooooOOOooo I actually wrote that one down for this trip almost a year ago and then completely forgot about it! Great reminder! I will definitely be adding and will probably do that one on audiobook while I'm hiking.


attackADS t1_jdjyr9f wrote

I like to buy books from places (be it the author or the story itself) that I've traveled to, which gives me a certain connection to the author/storyline. This applies to history books, too, but having a connection with the place really helps with my immersion into the book.


Independent_Boss3950 t1_jdk982k wrote

For some reason, every winter as a kid, I would reread The Chronicles of Narnia. I have no idea why, but they seemed like wintertime books. I guess because in the first book it is winter most of the time.


gimli_is_the_best t1_jdktmma wrote

Epic fantasy just goes so well with winter when you're stuck inside because it's too cold or dark to do anything but read in the afternoon. And then you have The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe with the "Always winter but never Christmas" to set the mood.


jackfaire t1_jdk9f87 wrote

I read On the Road twice. Once at 16 and once at 26. Not intentionally. I just hadn't read it in 10 years was feeling nostalgic and re-read it. The experiences were night and day.

At 16 I saw adventure and exploration and how cool this Kerouac guy was. At 26 I realized what a flaky asshole he was. I saw how he tended to be judgmental and make false promises to people in shitty situations that he never intended to keep.

There's a passage where he talks about this single mother he's been dating. How he's been trying to get them money to get them back to his home so that they can get married and he can be the father to her son. Then he talks about how he split off from them so he could go get money and send for them.

As soon as he's away from them he wires his aunt for money and leaves the area. When I was 16 I missed how that played out. At 26 I was appalled.


millera85 t1_jdkszh5 wrote

This is exactly why Kerouac is so divisive. The vast majority of people who first read him as adults are disgusted.


jackfaire t1_jdktg1g wrote

It actually helped me understand the way my mom treated my Uncle. As a kid he had that cool uncle vibe. As an adult it was like oh he's a flake who job hops, moves a lot (During a time when it wasn't due to economic reasons) , does coke etc.


Ohwhatagoose t1_jdke69v wrote

Try reading Endurance: Shackleton’s Incredible Voyage during a winter blizzard and below zero!


Loves-lit17 t1_jdkxgmc wrote

Similar idea: I read The Snow Child during a winter weather event and it definitely deepens the experience.


Bridalhat t1_jdjx4lk wrote

I took the giant hulking Everyman Library’s Joan Didion (We Tell Ourselves Stories in Order to Live; Slouching Towards Bethlehem; White Noise; Salvador; Miami; After Henry; Where I’m From) with me when I had to drive to the West Coast last year. I got to it by the time I made my slooooooow way back to Chicago.

Also try reading The Count of Monte Cristo at 20ish and 33ish. You will feel that gulf of years that was taken out of Dantes’s life when you remember where and when you first read certain passages.


millera85 t1_jdksleq wrote

This is the way to read the count of monte cristo.


WickedArcadia t1_jdk5mvy wrote

I read The Hunger Games on a solo hiking trip in North Carolina. Definitely felt very immersed in Katniss's struggle as I listened to the very real coyotes yipping away at night and imagined the very not real teenagers hunting me down during the day.


WolfInLambskinJacket t1_jdk9z1m wrote

I don't do this, but I think there are books that are better if read in a certain situations or in certain periods of one's life, or to say it better, I believe some kind of experiences can enrich the reading experience of a book.

I spent the entire lockdown here in Italy, reading travel literature and poetry. Talk about an escape 😂


MarzannaMorena t1_jdjvrk9 wrote

Yes, definitly. I like to read books with similar weather and seasons I am currently experiencing.

My favourite experience however was when reading Middlesex by Jeffrey Eugenides, after returning from big family gathering. Themes of family relations and generational differencess in the book really spoke to me at that time.


Zikoris t1_jdk69kr wrote

I've only started doing this fairly recently, and it is REALLY fun. I put together a whole Korean reading list for my trip to Korea last fall, but out of all of the books I found reading Beasts of a Little Land in the exact areas of Seoul where most of it takes place to be just perfect.

I also read Medicine Walk while on a camping trip with my dad in the same area the book takes place, which was also cool.


ChocolatMintChipmunk t1_jdl2d1a wrote

I reread World War Z at the beginning of Covid. And I can tell you that the governments reactions to Covid did not feel that far off from their reaction to the zombie apocalypse.


LastContribution1590 t1_jdk8qsa wrote

I read the Great Influenza at the beginning of the COVID pandemic and it was riveting.


Tigrari t1_jdle4zz wrote

I did the opposite (unintentionally) once and it was kind of surreal. I read The Bear and the Nightingale (set in Russia in winter) on a tropical vacation. Do not recommend (the book was good though).


Vexonte t1_jdlwetv wrote

Atlas shrugged. Don't get me wrong the Philosophy it was spouting was wrong but most if its societal criticisms were on the nose. I was working for a company with heavy ties to the government with alot of humanitarian ideals mixed into its "education". I was reading this book and it was describing my upper management perfectly. The two parts that really stuck with me was the train wreck scene and rule breaker monologue because I've seen both of those dynamics in full effect in real life at the time I was reading that book.


doowgad1 t1_jdjw0dg wrote

I like reading sea stories when I'm riding on a boat/ferry.


Ihadsumthin4this t1_jdjx4do wrote

I stumbled on Andrew Solomon's The Noonday Demon in 2002 just when I needed it.

Frances Lear's 1992 autobio The Second Seduction hits just right for an introspective soul who loves to read for human reasons.

That should be a start....


HLHurtz t1_jdkqtcf wrote

No I haven't ever done this


gimli_is_the_best t1_jdkrwus wrote

I kept hoping for a whole month off from work so I could read Ulysses (Joyce) without interruption and without getting sidetracked by rereading The Odyssey for context.

Then the pandemic happened and I thought, "Oh! This is perfect!" But you know what? I got distracted by reading The Odyssey a 4th time again and never got back to Ulysses ¯\(ツ)

EDIT: escape character typo

PS. I have read The Dubliners and A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man so Ulysses isn't my first Joyce experience. I just have a compulsive need to do competitive lit analysis with it and The Odyssey.


Nigeltown55 t1_jdl8fce wrote

I have a day book and a night book for this specific reason.


CakeEatingDragon t1_jdl9dqm wrote

Sometimes I try to smash out a particular book during certain weather. Like Jurassic Park in a thunderstorm or some Sherlock Holmes on a foggy night.


New_Helicopter_3993 t1_jdlb4lm wrote

When I was 20, I spent a summer working in Nantucket. I checked Melville's Moby Dick out of the local library, and read it over a few weeks. It felt like the perfect spot for that book, and I'm sure I enjoyed it more because of the location.

(I only discovered years later that Melville hadn't actually been to Nantucket before writing about it in Moby Dick. Didn't spoil the experience for me though.)


PumpkinPieIsGreat t1_jdlgcgl wrote

I've enjoyed certain books more than I think I normally would. Example, as a palette cleanse, if I've read a tonne of thrillers and then need a change, I will probably like the next book I read more than I otherwise would.

I also think some books have come along at the right time, organically.

I have tried reading Christmas books at Christmas, but haven't tried reading a book about road trips on a road trip. I like that idea, but I think I enjoy being able to be present in another world without having to go anywhere. I can sit on our couch or in our bed and read and jump into a whole other world.


i420PraiseIt t1_jdlgmwr wrote

I was spending an unhealthy amount of time on my computer this past week and I wanted to read something to get out of that habit so I reread Fahrenheit 451 and yeah that was an fitting situation to reread it! Broke that habit real quick after that one!


chichris t1_jdm0ac6 wrote

I read Less Than Zero as a kid in the 80’s. Still one of my favs.


imspooky t1_jdm144r wrote

I read The Terror during a cold snap where I was bundled up sitting in front of an electric heater


mmelonish t1_jdm34mo wrote

A few weeks ago we got a pretty big amount of snow for my area and trees had fallen down blocking most routes out of town, so I decided it was the perfect time to read No Exit by Taylor Adams and it was a fantastic choice


leafshaker t1_jdm37wl wrote

I read the Decameron during the start of Covid. Wild to read something written during the plague.

I definitely like reading wintery books in the winter, though I wonder if they would make me feel cool in the summer.


xowid47539 t1_jdm8chz wrote

Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance hit me like that.


KittyPrincessSally t1_jdmbefq wrote

I tend to save books that clearly have any kind of romance for when I'm single. And I read books I think my partner would be interested in while I am with them so we have something to talk about. Mostly I just read what I want though.


shower_1020 t1_jdmflg2 wrote

I read The Fellowship of the Ring for the first time while backpacking the John Muir Trail in CA! I felt like I was in the book every day. I would read the book at night, which was like, “then they walked a bunch,” and then get up the next morning and…walk a bunch. Magic.

I also read a book on that trip that was a true story about a ranger going missing the Sierras which was…unsettling. The book would be like “search-and-rescue teams were out at this location where he was last seen” and then I would walk through that location a couple days later…


Ju9e t1_jdmgung wrote

Well sometimes I wait until summer to read a certain book. Or any season. For example, I waited until winter until I read the shining and boy was that the right call. Just when they got to the hotel, we had a horrible blizzard where I live. It felt so right to read it then


Own_Comment t1_jdmwe71 wrote

Visited the Greenwich Observatory and prime Meridian in the middle of reading Longitude, so that was kinda cool.


Xenobladeguides t1_jdmzw8e wrote

Ok i have an example but it's much lamer lmao

I read the book Several People Are Typing in fall 2021. The whole book is in the form of Slack messages, and is mostly about an employee having his consciousness sucked into Slack. I enjoyed it at the time, but I was still a college student, so the humor and commentary didn't always land for me. Now I'm out of college and have been working a job for months that uses lots of Slack, so I just started rereading the book in order to get the full experience


ana451 t1_jdnbpis wrote

Absolutely. My favorite one is The Marriage of Opposites by Alice Hoffman which is set in St. Thomas. I started reading it just before going there on vacation and that made my stay on the island magical. I walked the same streets as the characters, went to the synagogue and the beaches mentioned in the book. It was fabulous.

Another one that comes to my mind but is not based on location is Bewilderment by Richard Powers. Reading it as a parent of a young child makes it an entirely different experience.


filiaflorum t1_jdodldh wrote

Yes absolutely! I like to read dark academia in the fall ( I also try to plan my english/literature electives in the fall… i’m a nerd i know) because it makes it so much more immersive. Ugh, it’s my favourite genre:)


[deleted] t1_jdkeo9i wrote



keeper4518 t1_jdlfiz8 wrote

I have this issue with my husband. He watches TikToks in bed every night without headphones and it drives me, a reader who likes quiet, insane. I started listening to reading playlists on my headphones at night and the music has made my reading mich more epic and calming than otherwise. Now I even do it sometimes when no one else is around.