Life & Culture

Open Thread Update: The Best Book(s) You Ever Read?

Looks like there are many Senior Planet members who, like me, are hooked on the pleasures of re-reading favorite books.

Since age 9, i’ve loved and at least 7 times have reread Jane Eyre


These are the books we go to time after time, to re-experience the pleasure of a finely-turned phrase, or gain new insight into a character, situation, or author, or simply to savor the familiarity of a moving or funny or compelling tale.

Pride and Prejudice for style of writing and a snicker on the side.


Sometimes we read to change our emotional state, too.

Unbroken. So inspirational!


Some members liked the classics, and others more modern works by Ray Bradbury or Alice Walker; two members said The Shack topped their lists.  For me, I’d take to a desert island four books:  The Periodic Table by Primo Levi, The Bridge of San Luis Rey by Thornton Wilder, Tepper Isn’t Going Out by Calvin Trillin and the Bible.

If you love re-reading as much as reading, check out this essay on re-reading, here, and then take a spin through the comments.  You might get some ideas for the next books you could read, and reread, throughout the rest of the year and into 2021.

We’ll leave this comments open for a while so you can share your favorites, too.   Who knows, you might introduce a new fan to your fave read.   Let us know in the comments.

Photo by GRÆS Magazine on Unsplash


Virge Randall is Senior Planet’s Managing Editor. She is also a freelance culture reporter who seeks out hidden gems and unsung (or undersung) treasures for Straus Newspapers; her blog “Don’t Get Me Started” puts a quirky new spin on Old School New York City. Send your suggestions for Open Threads to her at


29 responses to “Open Thread Update: The Best Book(s) You Ever Read?

  1. “1984”
    The country where a charlatan is worshipped as “Angel, Saint, Messiah, God,” where the elections are stolen at the historical center of national democracy, where war is peace, Hollywood pre-school dropouts are gurus, and the possibly most corrupt media in the world are celebrated as “journalism,” the ladies read of course about other oh, ah ladies. As ordered. Why would anyone read history when the concept itself is prohibited and thus unknown?
    In a way, I’d like to live long enough to see the ladies in the real 1984 which is, of course, coming.
    dr anna

  2. I first read it in the early 1970’s, and every few years I re-read Doris Lessing’s Four-Gated City to see how much I and the world have changed. She is my favorite author because her range of subject and style is endless.

  3. The Help is my favorite book because I invited a group of women together to have a discussion about it. In the group of women, there was an author and a woman, Margaret, who was raised during the reign of Chairman Mao in China. The result of the discussion and the connection between the two women resulted in a book called Really Enough, which is the story of Margaret’s life in China during that very difficult time in history. I highly recommend Really Enough, an award-winning book.

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