I have something of a love-hate relationship when it comes to series. I can be obsessive and compulsive But it is an odd relationship that is difficult to explain. I don’t like picking up books in mid series, I almost always start at the beginning. I prefer whenever possible to wait until a series is complete before even starting them. And here is the thing, I will continue to read books I don’t necessarily even like just to see what is next. It is almost pathological.
Sometimes that is great and I love the books first to last, like Ann Aguirre’s Sirantha Jax and Dread Chronicles, JD Robb’s In Death series, or Nalini Singh’s Psy-Changeling series. Just to name a few.
Other times it is almost miserable. For example, I am still reading Christine Feehan’s Dark, Leopard, and Ghost Walker series even though I am almost sure to be enraged and disappointed. Same with Lynsay Sands’ Argeneau series (still holding out hope for Bricker’s story). I am not sure why, or what I am expecting, But there are just some series that I can’t seem to let go, no matter how much I sometimes think I want to.
Other series sometimes I just had to push through to really get into it, and I think this is where my stubbornness pays off. Some of my absolute favorite series had first or second books that I really didn’t care for. Like Nalini Singh’s Guild Hunters, Shelly Laurenston’s Pride Series, Ilona Andrews Kate Daniels series, Gail Carriger’s Parasol Protectorate, and most recently Lisa Kessler’s Moon series. And If I hadn’t pushed through I would have missed so much. So maybe that is what pushes me to keep dipping back into a series I might feel meh toward or even just flat not like at the start.
What I think I have more trouble with than the pushing through aspect, is really the letting go of series. Not every series can be like Robb’s 40+ monstrosity that is still keeping me entertained. Every now and again a series just fades away for me, like Sherrilyn Kenyon’s Dark Hunters, or Jim Butcher’s Dresden Files. But that is pretty rare for me. Mostly I just keep slogging along forever and ever until the series is completed or the author stops writing them.
What got me thinking about it is the fact that Maryjanice Davidson’s Undead series has a new one coming out. I was just this side of maybe letting go (OK that is probably a lie) until I found out that there is only one more book after this one, and then the series will be completed. This is one of those series that I absolutely adored at the start and the first few I read and re-read compulsively. But the last few have been a bit disappointing and consequently I wasn’t thrilled or excited. Until, as I said, I found out the end is near. It gave me my second wind and I have actually started a complete series re-read. So posting may be a bit sluggish until I get that done. A couple of things strike me though. Marketing wise, finishing the series was probably the best move she could make. Reading reviews I am not the only one to be in this position of lagging, or worse, quitting altogether, so announcing the end may have prompted a few more people to pick the series back up and/or gave them the energy to finish. And two, re-reading this particular series is giving me a whole different perspective. Some of the things that seemed poorly planned or mentioned now make sense in hindsight, and also there are some continuity issues that are starting to bug me, not the time travel stuff, but things like how many years the Book of the Dead said she would rule, stuff like that.
I guess that last isn’t so important in the general theme of series, unless you are a big re-reader. More importantly, how do you handle series? And what are your favorite series? Bonus points for completed/ended series.