Wow, I was just updating my list of books reviewed & I thought I would add them up, to see how many books I had read & written about on here. I’m up to 99! I have a few books I’ve read, but haven’t written about yet, so I thought I’d put the list up & let you guys decide which one is next! If you think it should be a different book, please feel free to add any into the comments that you would recommend & why & I’m going to send one of you a lovely (little) prize. No limit on destination, you just have to be willing to give me your address so I can send it to you!
I hope lots of people play!!
List of books already read & waiting to be written about: (in absolutely no particular order)
- The Affair by Lee Child
- Curb Chek by Zach Fortier
- Let’s Pretend this Never Happened by Jenny Lawson
- Hell’s Corner by David Baldacci
- The Glass Guardian by Linda Gillard
- I shall Not Hate: A Gaza Doctor’s Journey on the Road to Peace and Human Dignity by Izzeldin Abuelaish
- Third World America by Arianna Huffington
Ok, I admit it does sometime happen, but not often enough. The last 2 books I have read have both been part of series (& unfortunately for me, they were not the 1st book in each of these series) but neither book was marked to indicate that it was part of a series. The first one I read was Kisscut by Karin Slaughter & the second was The Leopard by Jo Nesbo. Kisscut was a great book, but it ruined the book that comes before it, if you hadn’t already read it. I now pretty much know what happened, so why bother reading it? The Leopard was also a great book, but unlike Kisscut, it doesn’t ruin what happens in the book before it. I have a vague idea what happened in The Snowman after having read The Leopard, but Nesbo didn’t really give anything away & I am going to run out & get the rest of Nesbo’s books, because I loved The Leopard.
So, my question is – to all the publishers out there – if you represent an author who writes a series of books about the same central characters, why can’t you tell us that? Is it really so difficult? It surely makes sense to put something like: “An Inspector Hole novel” or “A Jack Reacher Story”, like are on Lee Child’s books. Doing so would alert potential readers to the fact that the book they have in their hands might not be the one they want to read just yet & would save people from doing what I did – reading a book out of order & having that ruin the book that came directly before it.
Just a thought!
I read a lot of series of books – Lee Child‘s Jack Reacher books, Ian Rankin‘s Rebus series, Jeffery Deaver‘s Lincoln Rhyme series, etc, etc & I have religiously read them in the correct order. I think it’s important to read them in the order that they were published, as you are reading them as the author intended & often there are small nuances in books, connecting details, that if you read them out of order could make the stories less effective, make less sense & potentially could ruin subsequent stories by giving away things that you wouldn’t necessarily know, not having already read the earlier books in the series.
There are other series’ where it doesn’t so much matter whether you read them in any order. Series where the main characters may remain the same, but because there is little to no chronology to the books, reading them out of order matters less. In these kind of series the author ensures you know what you need to about the main characters. Back references about the main characters to make sure you know enough to ensure you can read the books in any order you want. The Sherlock Holmes books specifically spring to mind. Each of those books, while about the same core of characters, can be read as individual stand-alone books.
Well, it turns out that I have recently broken my unwritten rule & have read 2 books in a series – out of order. Obviously I didn’t realise at the time that I was doing this, otherwise I would have chosen a different book to read. Unfortunately, the books in question were part of a series that need to be read in order, especially the 2 I read – Stone Cold & The Collectors, by David Baldacci. Even worse, I read Stone Cold first, then The Collectors & this is definitely one of the cases where reading them out of order ruined the reading. Stone Cold is essentially the continuation of The Collectors & having read Stone Cold first meant that I knew exactly what was going to happen (both the plot & the outcome) before I read it. Don’t get me wrong, I still enjoyed reading The Collectors, but I would have enjoyed it far more if I had had no idea what was happening before it happened!
So, my question to you is: How do you feel about reading Series of books out of order?