5 Reasons to Read the Oldies

Hello everyone!

One thing that I noticed in the blogging community is that we post so much about ARCs or new releases. I myself tend to post reviews of newer books rather than older ones, because I anticipate that they will be more popular and have better stats. And, well, there’s just something exciting about reading a book that is hot off the press.

Then I thought about it: Why is there this preference for newer books? Are older books any less interesting, less relevant, or less good compared to newer ones? Why would publication date affect the quality of the fiction?

Today I want to give credit to the oldies, whether they are 5 years old or 50 years old. Here are some of the reasons why we should still read them:

1. Oldies stand the test of time.

With so many books published nowadays, books become popular and are then forgotten. If 5, 15, or 57 years later, people are still talking about a book (like Harry Potter, or Gone Girl, or Quiet: The Power of Introverts, or To Kill a Mockingbird), then you know it is good.

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2. Oldies are still relevant.

Maybe older books don’t have stunning illustrations. Maybe people communicated by phone call rather than by text. Maybe cell phone apps weren’t a thing. But I believe that there are some themes in literature that are still as relevant today as they were years ago: Like overcoming fears, or pursuing a dream, or finding love.

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3. Oldies teleport us back in time.

Have you ever wondered what it’s like back then, when people still read the newspaper, and there was no social media? The thing is that we can’t physically leap back in time, but reading an older book might give us a glimpse of how life was like back then.

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4. Oldies might make an interesting case study.

Of course, there are some less pleasant aspects of older books: Maybe women were expected to do certain jobs, or stay home and take care of children. Maybe there are characters who are racist, or sexist, or homophobic. Although we might not agree, it might be an interesting glance at how people thought back then.

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5. Oldies are cheaper.

Unless it is an ARC, we likely have to buy new releases at full price. When we are looking for an older book, chances are, we’ll be able to find it at your local library, a used bookstore, or a thrift store.

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Do you like reading older books? Would you ever post (or have you ever posted) a review of an older book? Do you have a favourite Classic? If you could travel back in time and live in an older time period, when would it be?

16 thoughts on “5 Reasons to Read the Oldies

  1. artyplantsman says:

    Speaking as an Oldie I have to agree they have something to offer!

    Recently re-read ‘The Adventures of Goodnight and Loving’ by Leslie Thomas. 1980s vintage – before mobile phones and internet – about a guy who has a mid-life crisis and clears off to travel the world. Wonder why that appeals to me at the moment? Ummmm….

    Seriously – it is a great book and witty and heart-warming too.

    I’ve mentioned Gerald Durrell’s Corfu trilogy elsewhere and I still love them even though written before I was born (yes they are THAT old!).

    I do so like the enthusiasm in your writing Sophie.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Sophie Li says:

      Hello Darren! Itโ€™s always interesting to hear about the books they read because they are usually very different from the books that I read! I think itโ€™s awesome that you read older books- it must be a great way to be immersed in an older time period. To be honest I probably donโ€™t read oldies enough haha. I should learn from you!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Marie says:

    Oh this is such a great post, Sophie ๐Ÿ™‚ I agree that sometimes – and I know I’m guilty of this -, we just…well, we’re surrounded by hype, new releases, ARCs and everything, it’s so easy to forget there are “older” books we might forget, which is such a shame. Some of these oldies might be amazing books and end up being our favorites, if even we tried and seeked for them a little bit more. I’m totally guilty of being attracted to new releases and weak when it comes to hype and things, BUT this post is a great reminder that oldies are good – I should search some of these and add them to my TBR ahah ๐Ÿ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

  3. MichaelK says:

    Nice post, made me stop and think! I agree with your analysis and reasoning, I believe these are the main arguments for older books. Personally I’ve never really thought about a book’s “age”, if it appeals to me, I will read it no matter when it was written. Besides I love history (some call me a history buff) so this aspect is really interesting. On the other hand I don’t think I’d rather live in the past, every time I think about it the cons outweigh the pros.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Sophie Li says:

      Yes I agree that we shouldnโ€™t judge books by their age and that books from years ago can still be as good (or even better!)
      There are some aspects that I admire about the past. It seems like a simpler time back then without social media, cell phones or internet. On the other hand, I do enjoy the luxuries that we have now, and I like that there is a more open attitude about certain things like race and gender roles. So I agree that the pros of the present outweighs the cons ๐Ÿ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

  4. wordsspokentrue says:

    I totally agree! I love oldies and classics. I rarely ever read a new release bc the majority of my books are bought used. I feel like I have found a plethera of wonderful reads this way. I ten to be drawn to under-hyped books, or even hyped books but way after the hype is gone. I don’t know how I have dodged so many spoilers ๐Ÿ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

    • Sophie Li says:

      That’s how I feel as well ๐Ÿ™‚ I love buying books used – it is such a money saver and some of them are in great condition! Yes a lot of the older books are great reads! I also tend to be a bit skeptical of the super hyped books since they have disappointed me in the past.

      Liked by 1 person

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