The debate on which I book I should read next is always a tough one. I have officially (let me just check fictfact.com, which by the way is a brilliant site recommend-to-a-friendworthy even) twenty series on the go at the moment. That’s a lot isn’t it? Well I’m up to date (which means I’ve read all books that are currently released from that series) with two of them. That doesn’t really improve matters much does it? Oh well…
The fact of the matter is I like series of books. And it seems I’m not the only one. I often wonder how I actually read books before the internet came along. I’m a member of shelfari, goodreads and now I also write this blog, all of which I find are fantastic ways of discovering more and more books, especially those in a series, to read. The danger is of course, what has clearly happened to me, over crowding. Some people might believe in reading a series in one go, one after the other. I could never do that with maybe the exception of the likes of the Chronicles of Narnia or Harry Potter. Narnia, because they’re such short books that really three Narnia books are worth one regular book for me. HP because I just adore them. I’ve read the whole series at least three or four times since the last book was released. Anyway other than these few exceptions, I personally believe you need a break to let the characters breath.
So my usual method goes something like this. Series, other series, stand-alone, another series, repeat. So usually I’m back at series number one after four books. However this rarely goes according to plan. I’m a sucker for a good book and if I come across one that just makes me want to cry and laugh at the same time I’ll probably want to read the follow-up immediately. Take JR Ward for instance. I’m in the process of reading her Black Dagger Brotherhood series and it takes all my self-control not to plough through them all one after the other at the rate of ninety. I’m doing well though and it really does help. You don’t get sick of a specific character, certain places or settings in a book don’t bug you as much and just the author’s style of writing remains fresh in your head instead of slowly wearing you out.
Lets just take a few minutes to have a word on stand-alone’s. I like them. Sometimes I’m a little more meh towards them than I am series but that’s to my own detriment I fear. Some of the best books I’ve ever read have been stand-alones. Take Khaled Hosseini‘s books, for instance, the Kite Runner and A Thousand Splendid Suns were absolutely fantastic. The Time Traveler’s Wife from Audrey Niffeneger was also quite moving, if a bit confusing.
The problem with me is I will always, and I mean always, buy the next book from a series I’m currently making my way through over a stand-alone every day of the week. It does pain me sometimes because I feel I do make myself miss out on books that are fantastic. My mother as been offering The Room to me for over ten months now and I still haven’t found time to lend it off her and give it a read. So on this train of thought I feel I need to do something to motivate myself to read some stand-alone novels. So on another page on this site I have posted the Times 100 Novels of All Time and my mission is to start making my way through that hundred. I don’t believe it will be an easy task and I think that it will probably take me (ye may laugh at this but I’m being realistic) a couple of years at least. However it would be an accomplishment I think I would be super proud of so I’ll do my very best to stay on track.
This does not mean I’m giving up my series by the way…
- Dark Lover by JR Ward. (arlasworld.wordpress.com)