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Topic: Do you remember what you read?

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Subject: Do you remember what you read?
Date Posted: 4/2/2008 11:31 AM ET
Member Since: 10/24/2007
Posts: 1,313
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Unless a book makes a HUGE impression on me, I have trouble remembering story lines and characters later.  I read so much and so fast that I enjoy them WHILE I'm reading them, but once I'm onto the next thing it's hard for me to keep track.  Whenever someone posts in the forums about a particular book I know I've read, sometimes I can't even remember if I liked it or not, let alone being able to contribute to the conversation.  Please tell me I am not alone!  I just think my brain can't handle it all - it's info in and then info out.

Date Posted: 4/2/2008 11:35 AM ET
Member Since: 1/11/2007
Posts: 1,646
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I tend to remember the general themes, but forget plot specifics and character names unless the book made a great impression on me (usually this means it's a keeper for me). I often do a review if it made a great impression.  I think that helps with remembering specifics.  Usually if somebody posts a question about a book and I've read it, I get a vague recognition and if I think about it, things start coming back to me.



Last Edited on: 4/2/08 11:38 AM ET - Total times edited: 2
Date Posted: 4/2/2008 11:35 AM ET
Member Since: 8/11/2005
Posts: 467
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Ok, I admit I do this too. A few years back I started a book journal to record the basics. Title, author, copywrite, pages, genre and cast of characters. I also include a basic plot outline. I found that I forgot to include my thoughts on the book other then a grading scale grade. (A+ - F). I know there are many times I think to myself "I know I have read that book." but then can't remember a thing about it. Other times I have found that I pick up a book and realize I had already read it. So not, girlie, you are so not alone in this.

Date Posted: 4/2/2008 11:37 AM ET
Member Since: 3/24/2008
Posts: 271
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I know exactly what you mean, that is how I end up with so many duplicates.

Date Posted: 4/2/2008 11:46 AM ET
Member Since: 8/12/2006
Posts: 1,012
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I don't remember.  Once the book is finished, I forget about it.  It seems kind of a waste because I really enjoy the books and too easily just move on to the next.

They only character that really stuck with me through the years is Troy from V. C. Andrews Dark Angel.  I couldn't get him out of my mind for years.  I should probably reread that book just to find out why. 

Date Posted: 4/2/2008 12:31 PM ET
Member Since: 5/3/2006
Posts: 6,436
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I usually remember quite a lot, though the more mediocre books are less likely to make an impression.

Date Posted: 4/2/2008 12:59 PM ET
Member Since: 2/24/2006
Posts: 5,498
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If its a really good book, I usually do.  Especially my keepers.

Sherri

Date Posted: 4/2/2008 1:09 PM ET
Member Since: 1/5/2008
Posts: 140
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I am the same way! If I read the back cover and most times remember if I've read it or not.   I ususally remember if I liked it, but not enough to carry on a deep convo about the characters.

Date Posted: 4/2/2008 1:23 PM ET
Member Since: 8/9/2007
Posts: 4,058
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I've always thought that it was funny that I'd remember my keepers and forget most everything else.  The keepers I can always pull out and read again, but the rest are mostly long gone, and yeah, I've gotten home from the UBS with something less than memorable that I realize later I've already read and gotten rid of once:P  Sometimes it seems like a book has to be either really good or really bad for me to remember it.  I do see plenty of so-so books I've read all the time, but I usually have to look at the back & read the synopsis before I remember what they were about.

Date Posted: 4/2/2008 3:01 PM ET
Member Since: 7/10/2006
Posts: 673
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I was blessed with a moderately long memory so I remember a lot altho the ones that were really boring and that ones that I really hated, I try to forget.



Last Edited on: 4/2/08 3:02 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 4/2/2008 3:15 PM ET
Member Since: 12/18/2007
Posts: 2,199
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Unless it's a book I loved I don't remember it.  I have really bad short term memory so I tend to forget them very quickly.

Date Posted: 4/2/2008 3:24 PM ET
Member Since: 12/8/2006
Posts: 29,785
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Phew, I'm not getting old and forgetting things! I hardly ever remember the characters' names (in fact I tend to forget the ones I'm currently reading). Basically all I remember is whether or not I read it and my general impression- loved it, so-so, bad, etc.

My MIL just recently read a book that I had read over a year ago. She tried discussing certain aspects of the book with me, but the details were gone from my brain:) They slowly came back to me, the more she talked, but to this day I still don't remember all of it.

I even have a problem with my keepers...sometimes I come across a "Why did I keep that? book",  I have to re-read it to remind myself why I kept it.

Date Posted: 4/2/2008 3:45 PM ET
Member Since: 10/19/2007
Posts: 1,028
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I remember my keepers to the point where I can recite them....well certain parts anyway.

 

Date Posted: 4/2/2008 4:16 PM ET
Member Since: 9/24/2007
Posts: 453
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I'm so with you...I'm always astounded at the recall of some people on this site, especially people in this forum.  Wish I could remember them like that!

sara

Date Posted: 4/2/2008 5:04 PM ET
Member Since: 12/7/2005
Posts: 1,003
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I'm blessed/cursed with detailed memory of trivia.  I invariably can't find my car keys or go to the post office to mail something and forget to take it with me and so on and so on but dang, I can remember all kinds of obscure things from books I read years ago.  I've answered hundreds on questions on Jeopardy and asked my family "You know how I knew that?"  "We know. You read it in a Harlequin, " they chorus.  And not only did I remember it, I can go pull it off the shelf and turn to the page because I remember the section of the book it was in.  And you know what that's worth?  Nada.  In fact, maybe less than nada because who knows what I could put in that brain space if I could clean house, LOL.

Date Posted: 4/2/2008 6:40 PM ET
Member Since: 7/7/2005
Posts: 392
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Amy,

I used to be able to remember books so well; what I had already read, books I wanted to read; books I had read through the library and wanted my own copy of, it was all in my head.  Then I had kids, I swear it's having kids that did in my memory!

Now I can't even let myself read the first chapter excerpt teasers that come in the back of the books.  I will read them and then actually pick up the book at some later point and then spend the first 4 or 5 chapters trying to remember if I have read that book because it seems so familiar, lol.  I have even, a ouple of times, gotten halfway through a book before realizing, "Hey, wait.  I have read this book before, and I wasn't very impressed with it the first time, so why am I reading it again ?!?!"

It is even worse with ebooks.  At least with a paper book I have a cover to help me remember (ooh, look at the pretty pictures), so many of my ebooks don't even have a cover picture.  I have tried to buy the same ebook twice before!  I love Fictionwise, they won't let me do it and remind me kindly that I already have that book on my shelf, lol.

Date Posted: 4/2/2008 6:51 PM ET
Member Since: 5/25/2006
Posts: 670
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Yep, terrible memory here, too!  In fact, as soon as I finish a book I go straight to Amazon and give it a star rating.  Many times I go back to see if I read a book and find out I didn't like it, but cannot remember why :)  If their database ever gets ruined, I'm in big trouble!

Katrina

Date Posted: 4/2/2008 7:27 PM ET
Member Since: 1/11/2007
Posts: 1,646
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I have a convenient excuse.  I had a stroke a couple of years ago from a carotid dissection (that's an atypical stroke due to a tear in the carotid, not clogged arteries and is most common in younger adults -- even 21 year olds have had them.   (Just seemed like a bad headache at the time).  Fortunately, the only lasting effect is some slight impairment to short-term memory and difficulty multi-tasking.  Docs kept telling me how lucky I was.  How can it be LUCKY to have a stroke at 43  =(  ?  Oops . . . just gave away my age.  Started reading after the stroke to improve my memory and take my mind off my troubles.  Found it relieved my anxiety over my health to get absorbed in a book. 



Last Edited on: 4/2/08 7:29 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 4/2/2008 8:24 PM ET
Member Since: 10/19/2007
Posts: 1,028
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Ummm, Claudia, 43 is NOT old.  As for your situation, I'm both sorry to hear about it and soo happy you were lucky enough to have a milder version of something so horrible.  I hope all continues to go well for you.  You're also lucky to have something as great as a good book be a form of therapy :)

Date Posted: 4/2/2008 8:36 PM ET
Member Since: 4/25/2007
Posts: 11,555
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The memorable books, yep, I can remember!  Some I pull off my shelf here at home, it's like I've never read it before but I know if it went on the shelf I read it.

Actually, this is pretty much my critera for keepers.  I'm on a kick to trim down the number of books I have (I used to keep EVERYTHING).  When I start pulling them off my shelf, if I can't pretty clearly remember the book or anything about it, it gets posted here for swap.

Date Posted: 4/2/2008 8:57 PM ET
Member Since: 9/15/2005
Posts: 319
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I'm blessed/cursed with detailed memory of trivia.  I invariably can't find my car keys or go to the post office to mail something and forget to take it with me and so on and so on but dang, I can remember all kinds of obscure things from books I read years ago.  I've answered hundreds on questions on Jeopardy and asked my family "You know how I knew that?"  "We know. You read it in a Harlequin, " they chorus.  And not only did I remember it, I can go pull it off the shelf and turn to the page because I remember the section of the book it was in.  And you know what that's worth?  Nada.  In fact, maybe less than nada because who knows what I could put in that brain space if I could clean house, LOL.

Bronwyn posted this, and I could have written the exact same thing!   I once had a European history professor all impressed by my recall when I was in college, and I was desperately trying to think of a way not to say that I'd picked up most of my knowledge of customs, royal lineages, etc., from historical romances!  So I guess it once did me some good, but yeah, now it pretty much shows I do more reading then cleaning too.  :P
Date Posted: 4/2/2008 9:35 PM ET
Member Since: 10/24/2007
Posts: 1,313
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Thanks ladies - I'm so glad I'm not alone, lol!  And for those of you who DO remember, I am jealous!  :-)

Date Posted: 4/3/2008 1:45 AM ET
Member Since: 1/19/2008
Posts: 14,799
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i can generally remember the broad outlines of a book, but little details like names probably aren't going to stick.  sometimes when i'm reading book 5 in a series it takes me a while to remember who all the people are from the previous books.

i started keeping a book journal a few years ago, writing down the books i read, and now if i'm going to read a later book in a series and haven't read the others recently, i'll at least read my journal entries to try and trigger memories.

there was a trilogy i've read probably more than once, but not for years and was recently re-reading, and my husband kept trying to talk to me about the big ending while i was in the middle of it.  i didn't even remember the big ending, so he gave it away for me.  grr.  just because he re-reads that one practically every six months doesn't mean i do!