Saturday, October 27, 2012

Discussion: Series vs. Stand-Alone Books

I love books, it’s the reason why I spend hours sitting in front of the computer sharing my thoughts with you, promoting authors, and doing all these bloogy things (I know that’s now a word). 

Series are fun and they have their pros and cons, just like everything else in life.  I like series because they allow me to really know the characters, and not only that, the characters tend to evolve more over time.  Sometimes a story is SO GOOD, that it takes a few books to really develop it. 

Lately, it seems that about 70% or more of the books being published are series.  This can be overwhelming, and it’s gotten to a point that I’m hesitant to start yet another series.  Why?  Well, for three reasons: 1) If I don’t like the first book, I don’t feel like reading the rest of the series (too many books to read!), 2) I can’t seem to keep track of all the series anymore!, and 3) it often takes a year or more for the next book to be published, this means that we often have years invested on a series.  Also, some series overstay their welcome.  Does it happen to you that you lose interest halfway to the series?  This happens to me, especially if the series is more than, say… six books long.  I can think on a few of those, but my intent is not to criticize, so instead this is a list of my favorite series:

There's a lot more than these!

Now, lets talk about stand-alone books.  Some of my favorite books are stand-alone stories.  What I like most about them is that I don’t have to wait years for the ending (especially when they end in a cliffhanger).   The downside is that sometimes these books are SO GOOD, that I don’t want them to end.  I know, I know, it seems like I can’t make up my mind, right? (Do you pity hubby right now?)  Here are some of my favorite stand-alone books:

Are you a person that must finish a series?  Do you judge each book independently or the series as a whole?  What are some of your favorite series?  How about stand-alone books?


  1. I don't feel compelled to finish a series, although it does kind of nag at the back of my mind when I don't! It does seem like series (I want to write "serieses", which is also not a word!)are everywhere now. I just finished a stand-alone(The Shadow Society by Marie Rutkoski) and it's been so long since I've read one, when I realized that it was actually over on the last page, I almost didn't believe it. Oh, and my favorite series of all time, hands-down: Harry Potter.

  2. wow! I loved this post because I feel the same way! I lvoe series but not if they are too long and sometimes Stand alone books leave me wanting more!
    Divergente, Starcrossed, The Hunger Games, Sweet Evil, The Lux series are just some of my favorites! But indeed, waiting for the next book to arrive is SO annoying! LOL
    I want them NOW! :)
    Great blog!

    1. Rhomy, thank you so much for your kind words. There is something I've been doing lately and it's to wait for all books in a series to be published before I start it :)

  3. I totally get what you mean about being hesitant in starting new series! There are just some series I'll probably never read, because there are too many books for me to try and catch up on. But I love continuing on with series, I hate starting a series and not finishing it, unless I really didn't enjoy the first book. I'm a huge fan of stand-alones, but when they're really good, I hate saying goodbye to characters too. I like that a few authors are writing companion books now, instead of strict series, as I feel like I have more freedom in reading them.

    My favourite series has to be Harry Potter, but I have a huge list of second places! As for stand-alones, Amy and Roger's Epic Detour and The Sky is Everywhere spring to mind!

    1. I can't believe I forgot to add The Sky is Everywhere! It's one of my favorite books ever!

      Thank you for sharing your thoughts :)

  4. I'm also hesitant in starting a series when I'm not sure if I'd finish it. I hate starting something and not finishing it so, I search for good ones and go with it. There are also books that only have two books in the series such as If I stay and Where She Went by Gayle Forman and Slammed and Point of Retreat by Colleen Hoover (but I heard there will be a third book). Anyway, I really love these books/series! If you haven't read them yet, you should! Highly recommended!
    I also love reading stand-alones like The Fault in our Stars, The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight, Pushing the Limits, After reading these books I wished it was longer and I can't get over it.
    Great post by the way!

    Karina @ Couchpotatoreader

    1. Thank you for sharing your thoughts with me. I read If I Stay and loved it, but I haven't read the second book (although I do have it). Thank you for suggesting the Colleen Hoover series :)

  5. Oh yes I totally agree with you. Especially the waiting a whole year for the next book in a series or also when authors tend to make the first book an intro where nothing much happens and that annoys me because I invested a whole book and it could have been wrapped up in a couple of chapters.

    As for standalones, I have a TON that I love. Some I wish never would end like EASY or Anna and the french kiss. However some series I also love too much and wish never to end so I'm happy that they are part of a series!

    haha, i think overall we need to have more standalone dystopian novels.. even if they are 600 pages, as long as they have good world building and character development I'm all for it

    - Juhina @ Maji Bookshelf

    1. Yes, you're right. It also bothers me when the second book (or others in the middle) are full of 'fluff'.

      I love both Easy and Anna too. Thank you for stopping by!


I love comments! Please leave me one and I will try to reply as soon as I can. Liza


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