Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Wednesday Chatter #4: On series and why I love them

Wednesday Chatter is a weekly feature at Ruby's Books where we'll be talking about anything and everything related to books and reading. Click here if you want to see what we talked about in the previous weeks

WARNING: Some bad words might be used in the following post. Don't say I didn't warn you!

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Hey guys! A few days ago I saw this post that Ellie wrote about the series she's reading and the ones she's read. She also linked to Gaby's post and I saw that it was a very fun thing to do and I decided to do it myself. I thought "Hey, my list isn't going to be that big, right? I might as well share it". Man, was I wrong. I actually started writing the post, but when I realized how huge my list was getting, I got scared my blog would crash and decided not to post it. Don't believe me? Here's the simplified list:

Series I'm reading and I'm up to date with: 23
Series I'm reading but I'm not up to date with: 37
Series I've read but I'm not sure about finishing at the moment: 11
Series I've read that I have no clue if they have finished or not: 5 (either the author hasn't posted anything about continuing the series in question or some have put their series on hold for the moment)
Series I've finished: 14

I am still working on the "TBR Series" list, but for now I decided not to continue writing it. But from what I've counted so far there are at least another 15 series on my TBR list.

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As you can probably tell by those insane numbers above, I really, really love series. I know a lot of readers are tired of long series, but I say keep them coming. Seriously, I doubt there will ever be a time when I'll get tired of them.

There are a lot of reasons why I love series. The first one is that when I love one or two characters from a book, I really can't get enough of them. I also believe that if they're done right, series can help discover the multitude of layers a character has. Those of you who've read Sherrilyn Kenyon's Styxx, how many of you can honestly say you were expecting THAT in his story? Don't lie!

Usually I feel like stand-alone books only give me a side or two of a character and, while sometimes that's fine with me, I find myself wondering what's going to happen next. Of course, this seriously depends on the original story of the character. If I'm reading a contemporary where one of the characters dies, I won't be expecting another book with that particular character. I'm not that crazy. I'm talking about those books that sometimes leave me wanting for so much more.

Another reason why I'd rather read series is that sometimes the world in a book is just too amazing to have just that one story. Can you imagine what it would've been like had Harry Potter and The Sorcerer's Stone been the only book in the Harry Potter universe? I would've felt robbed in some way. Or think of any other series you've ever read and put all books aside, except for the first one. To me, that feels lonely and slightly sad. And this isn't just true for fantasy books, it's true for contemporaries also. I can't think of a YA contemporary series, so I'm giving you the adult version here. Any reader over 18 that's read and loved the Rough Riders series by Lorelei James could probably imagine how bad they'd feel if there had been just that first story, especially knowing there were so many McKay brothers and cousins and a sister out there to populate a small country. They needed stories too.

As for why I love big series (over 5-10 books), this is quite simple, actually. I think this is true for most readers, too. When you read a series that has you hurting for the characters, loving them, crying with them, wishing you could step inside the book and either punish the bad guy or smack some sense into some characters, the ending of that series feels awful. You know that there will be no more new adventures, no more daily life situations, little details, pranks, no more jokes, no more tears, nothing. While I don't read a series because I want to see my favorite characters get hurt, getting to the end of a series makes me want to spend a day in bed, under the blankets and wish that it's all just a bad dream and the series isn't over. It's like you have your life divided: Before Series and After Series. Last week I told you that I love to re-read. I do, but re-reading a series that's ended will always be bittersweet to me.

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So while I may be one of the few weirdos out there who have so many series they've read (90, in case you decided not to make the math), I am not regretting anything.

What about you? Why do you love to read series. And in case you don't like series, why not?
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