Neocitron and Nostalgia

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In the past few weeks, the plague has befallen this household. Noah got it first, the sore throat, runny nose and general discomfort. When his passed and I still wasn’t sick, I thought that I was in the clear. Until yesterday.

Thank goodness I was off work yesterday and today as I slept the sleep of the dead and consumed as much hot chocolate, neocitron and freezies as I could handle. However, my sick, plugged up brain did come up with one golden nugget of an idea.

I’m going to re-read the goosebumps series.

I’m not usually a person to re-read anything. Once a book is done, it’s done. If I enjoyed it – awesome. If not… well I finished it and that’s all that matters. (I know it seems like I re-read a lot. So far in this blog alone I have sworn to re-read Harry Potter. You’ll notice that I never mentioned it again. That’s because I tend to ignore my failures rather than accept them.) That being said, the other day I was laying in bed, trying not to be suffocated by my mountain of kleenex, and I happened across a video featuring R.L. Stine.

Now, as a child, I couldn’t read the Goosebumps books because I found them too scary. I got about half way through Piano Lessons Can Be Murder before I realized that I wasn’t going to sleep for weeks (kind of funny considering about a year later I was reading Stephen King). But now I’m a grown up! I’ve read numerous horror novels/series claiming to be “Goosebumps for grown ups” but most of them fell flat. I just didn’t get the same kind of feeling that I got as a kid, curled up under the blankets, with a flashlight, turning page after page of a terrifying read.

Somehow, through the miracle of the book world, I managed to get my hands on the complete Goosebumps series. Sixty two books in all. Here I sit, ready to delve back into my childhood – when a thought strikes me.

What if they aren’t what I remember? What if that feeling isn’t there anymore?

This is the nature of the beast that is the re-read. In your head, a book or series can be so amazing. You can remember the feeling you had when you read each book, what your favourite snack was at the time, where you read the majority of the story. So when you sit down to perform your second adventure into that world, you are expecting to feel the same things. However, you’re a different person now. The world around you has changed and your preferences have definitely changed. When I started reading cozy mysteries, I was sitting down with a cup of cinnamon chai tea and a bowl of chocolate covered almonds for every reading session. Although I still love cinnamon chai tea and cozy mysteries, I now have to be in the right mood for chocolate covered almonds. I’ll never forget the Bewitching series by Madelyn Alt (the series that I was reading at the time) but I was enjoying myself so much then that I’m afraid to re-read it now and ruin everything.

Sometimes re-reads can be amazing and nostalgic – but sometimes they’re just not such a good idea. I’m going to forge on with my Goosebumps series re-read, but I’m going to try to do so with low expectations. After all, they are horror stories written for children. But even the text on the inside cover gives me goosebumps:

Reader Beware, You’re In For a Scare 

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