The One Where I Change My Mind

A while back, I had a very pleasant, rational, adult, behind-the-scenes exchange with a reader here at Wicked Scribes. Since I don’t want to broadcast someone else’s personal opinions, I will leave the name out, but what we discussed was Cassandra Clare and her Shadowhunter world. What we debated was how much is too much, and when should she start wrapping up her series and start something else. “The Reader” thought that enough was enough, and that hopefully The Dark Artifices would finish things up. My take was, since I am a fan, you can never have too much. More = better, right?

Well, this is the one where I change my mind.

I hate to say it, but I have swung over to the other side. As I was looking at her upcoming schedule, I became completely overwhelmed by the sheer length of time it would take to actually get everything done. Between the second and third books of The Dark Artifices, the three books of The Last Hours trilogy, the rumored secret fifth Shadowhunter trilogy, and the upcoming adult Magnus Bane trilogy – at roughly one book a year – that take us to 2027. 20 freakin’ 27. The Shadowhunter world just keeps getting added to, extended, and expanded beyond belief.

For me, now, The Dark Artifices would be the perfect place to wrap things up. I am not a huge fan of this new series, nowhere near my love of The Mortal Instruments and especially The Infernal Devices, but it isn’t bad. But I think it is enough. A Magnus series (again, for me) would be pointless now, since we know he gets his happily ever after with Alec, and we already got a full set of novellas devoted to his past. I don’t really have any interest in Will and Tessa’s children in The Last Hours, either. And that mystery fifth trilogy isn’t even on my radar.

Part of what has changed for me is that I have been reading authors who say from the start how many books a series will have, like Kelley Armstrong‘s five book Cainsville series, or Anne Bishop‘s five book The Others series. I don’t like to see a great series wrap up, but I also don’t like to see a great series get dragged down by not knowing when to end. And as much as I love a good spin-off series, you can only spin-off so many times before things just get repetitive. What side do you fall on…carry on or wrap up? How much is too much for you? What other series (cough*Carpathians*cough) do you think should be looking towards a finale?


90 thoughts on “The One Where I Change My Mind

    • kaleigha says:

      I actually didn’t even buy the last Carpathian book – I loathed what’s her name (literally, I can’t remember because I don’t like her enough), and the first chapter excerpt I read online made me dislike her even more – Gabrielle! Just remembered. Anyways, couldn’t stand her before, liked her less after the excerpt, and the inclusion of granny Trixie made me shake my head so I never did read it. I will see if I can pick it up cheap somewhere, but I was not paying 35 bucks for it. Not happening. I do hope that I didn’t miss any set up for future stories, though.

  1. Christine says:

    I stopped reading Janet Evanovich’s Stephanie Plum series several years ago. I also stopped reading every single book from J.D. Robb’s Death series. I think series can go on way too long. Although, I’m really bummed right now to hear that The Other series by Anne Bishop will only be five books, which means the next book is the last one! 😦 I’m also not looking forward to when Ilona Andrews finishes her Kate Daniel series, but sadly it has to end at some point.

    • Ashley says:

      The beauty of the Kate Daniels series is that the main characters still have so much room to evolve and learn about themselves and each other. Ilona Andrews has done a brilliant job in that arena. I do agree that it has to end at some point, though. Eventually the conflict between Kate and her father will have to be resolved. Can’t wait to see what happens in the next book!

      • Christine says:

        Same here! I do believe that she might do a spin off with another character. I know that she has a side book with Derick and Julie.

        • kaleigha says:

          I love that short story. And there is the Hugh book, too. And I am holding out for a Roman-centric series, along with more Derek. See? I am not demanding. At all.

    • kaleigha says:

      I am only on the sixth (?) In Death book so far, but I am pacing myself and not marathoning them, just because there are so darn many and I don’t want to see them get too repetitive. On the plus side, though, there is a chance that The Others might be expanded beyond the original five, but maybe with a different story arc or different protagonist. At least that was the rumor I heard. Here’s hoping. I shudder to think about Kate wrapping up, though. That will be an ugly, ugly day.

  2. bfmason50 says:

    I would like to see a spin off of Anne Bishop’s The Other series in some form since I just love the world so much. I wouldn’t mind if it is on the Vampires or even on Hope with Jackson. I am not really sure or recall if they ever gave an Age range on Hope but I figure she is in about 14 to 16 year olds at the time of the end of the 4th book. So not sure if she would need to age her a couple to few years for an Adult series or make it into a YA (Young Adult) or NA (New Adult) series.

    Another book I would like to see get another spinoff would be Rachelle Mead’s Vampire Academy series. For I never felt that she finished the story or Arc on all the political intrigue at the end of the last book of Vampire Academy and book 1 of the spin off Bloodlines series. While I loved the Bloodlines series I think there needs to be 1 or 2 books to finish off Jill and Eddie storyline and how it ties into her sister’s throne.

    Then there is the book The Host an absolutely amazing book that Stephenie Meyer wrote that was supposed to be a trilogy but has only done 1 book.

    Where I agree with you is on I think Jeaniene Frost got it write on the number of books for Cat and Bones. While I love Cat and somewhat like Bones at times I think that series ended perfectly at the end of the last book.

    I also think while I love Charlie Davidson and her hijinks and naming her body parts is funny. While I think it is about time for the story arc needs to be finished soon with Reyes, Archangel Michael and God Jehovah.

    • kaleigha says:

      I am hoping that if The Others does go on, it would maybe focus on Vlad, or even Henry. Or, like you say, maybe Hope. Not sure it would be with Jackson, since he already has a mate in Grace, but then you never know. Maybe Hope and Vlad? So many to choose from.

      I swear I would’ve bet money on a third Vampire Academy series focused on Jill and Eddie. I mean, I was pretty much certain there was one coming our way. I haven’t read the last book of the Bloodlines series, so maybe that whole thing gets wrapped up there, but they were just begging for their own books.

      Now if I can get my hands on a Ian series from Jeaniene Frost, I will be absolutely thrilled. I haven’t heard of how many Charlie books are planned, though I do wonder how much more mayhem they can get into before it starts to feel drug out, too.

      • bfmason50 says:

        I loved how the Bloodlines series tied up it was a great book, if you liked the others I would encourage you to get it even though it is a young adult book. It was great to see the old Palm Springs characters working with many characters from Vampire Academy series to find Jill. Their was some major surprises in the book. It was also nice to see a HEA for Adrian and Sydney.

        • kaleigha says:

          I do love me some Adrian and Sydney, and that is part of the problem. I have this weird…thingie…where I buy the last book in a series, but don’t read it for a long time. The Ruby Circle has been sitting on my shelf since release day, but I haven’t read it. Why? Because if I don’t read it, the series isn’t over. Yes, that really is how my brain works. I am trying to force myself to go back and finish up the many, MANY series I have done that to, but it is taking a while.

          • bfmason50 says:

            I understand how you feel about reading last books in a series. I imagine that would be a lot harder if you mainly read the books instead of listening to them like I do. I have probably listened to Vampire Academy series about 4 times, Bloodlines 2 times through all the books, and about 5 times if you include to a up to a certain book in the series. I have listened to Kate Daniels series who know how many times. Part of me wants to dig my head in the sand and not read a final book because if I do the journey is over, and I would have to recognize that fact.

            I just finished listening to I am Number 4 series which I have enjoyed, the last book was mix for me. It tied up the loose ends and the story Arc which is nice. But the ending I am not completely happy about it was almost like the epilogue chapter was an afterthought.

  3. Gabrielle says:

    Sherrilyn Kenyons Dark Hunter series. Its too big and she writes books for character we don’t know and don’t care about. Where’s Savitars book or Jaden’s or Urien’s? The war with Azura and Noir has all but disappeared from the main series amd that was a major plot. And the fact that Daimons now walk in daylight and no longer need to feed on human souls is going to make the dark hunters redundant, there no longer needed so what are they going to do?

    • kaleigha says:

      Good lord, the Dark Hunter books make up over 1/2 of my TBR pile at this point. And I think the monster size of the series is what puts me off starting them. That is a scary pile to tackle, especially when they are all on my shelf, staring at me. Accusingly. I was smart enough to start the In Death series and just pick up a book at a time, so it doesn’t seem so overwhelming. Gah.

      • Iain says:

        Dark-Hunters makes that Cassandra Clare article I saw “in the future” look tame… she is writing like 9 more Chronicles of Nick books… which means at least 9-10 more Dark-Hunter books before Nick gets his adult book… that’ll put the mega-series into In Death territory with 50ish books… assuming thats the end… and thats 2027-2030 as well… and that series started back in 1999-2000… altho I think the earliest prologue germ of an idea was written back in like 1990… the one included in Acheron with baby Sivi (?)

        I stopped visiting for so long it recycled my avatar…

        • kaleigha says:

          Hey Iain…that is really scary, isn’t it? Something like 15 Nick books blows right past young adult and into Nick’s late 20’s, which doesn’t really work out that well.

          • Iain says:

            Chronicles of Nick is mind-bendy anyway… super-Nick’s 5th and final attempt at saving the future… altering the timeline in big ways… that literally overwrite events that happened in earlier Dark-Hunter books… which is why they fit “chronologically” in publication timeline despite also being prequels… I think they’re supposed to end right around the beginning of the series where Nick is apprentice to Kyrian and the uninitiated twin gets kidnapped… so long since I read the early books..

            • kaleigha says:

              I debated a long time what order to start things in, since most said you should read the Dark-Hunter books first then go back and do Chronicles of Nick as they fit in, but before I started reading them I considered them strictly prequels. I guess once I get into the main series I will see if I made the right choice.

              • Iain says:

                I think Chronicles of Nick starts around book 18-20… whichever book ends with an Acheron epilogue where he confirms a timeline change… he has conflicting memories I think… others only remember the new timeline…

                  • Iain says:

                    Totally… I think most people that have given up on the series have done so because its become such a complicated mess…

                    … I’m teeting on the edge myself… between complexity, and all the mythological tangents she goes on anymore… the Mayan Apocalypse back around 2012 and the whole 12/21/2012 Mayan calendar thing… and now with Camelot/Avalon and the dragons…

                    The series was much more manageable back when it was almost exclusively Greek and Atlantis mythology

                    • psub20 says:

                      Say what now? Mayan Apocalypse? Dark Hunters was supposed to be almost exclusively Greek and Atlantis mythology. Oh boy!

                      I quit when she released Chronicles of Nick. I felt cheated because Nick had just become a super interesting game-changer in the Dark Hunter series and suddenly we reverted to his teen years. And especially because we had seen Nick change so much and evolve through out the entire series. Other than Acheron, Nick’s was the book I was looking forward to and then when CoN came out I guessed that his adult HEA was not even on the horizon. And I was done!

                    • kaleigha says:

                      I am doing it backwards and starting with the Nick books first, since it seemed like a toss up which one to begin with.

  4. pals20 says:

    IMHO, a lot of authors are probably under contract or get pressurized by “The Machine” to churn out books in a popular series. I know for sure this is the case with Stephanie Plum series as the author said in an article that the triangle between Stephanie Plum, Ranger and Morelli will never be resolved as long as the series continues.

    I feel the same may be the case with Christine Feehan and Sherrilyn Kenyon. Now with Cassandra Clare. How else would you explain release dates running into decades?

    I like a long running series as long as there’s movement and where actions/ results of previous books change how things work in an current or upcoming book. I don’t even need to bring up Nalini Singh and Ilona Andrews are exceptional examples of this. To a certain extent, Morganville Vampires by Rachel Caine is a also a fair example of this. On the other hand, J D Robb is a good example of where there is no arc just readable books written one after the other. But even in this, things keep changing, people are added, they evolve and so on.

    For me as a reader, all it takes is good writing and non-idiotic behaviour by the characters and I will read them for as long as writers write them. My two cents. Cheers!

    • Alex says:

      I agree with your observation about authors under contract or pressurized by their publishers. When I abandon a series because of the quality I often feel a little disgust toward the publisher. Long series by popular authors can get away with a lapse in quality because of reputation, large existing fan-base, etc. I, like many other readers, get really involved, which makes it difficult to stop reading a series that isn’t finished even if I’m starting to hate it. Sometimes there is even a majority of great reviews so I give the newest book a try, can’t stand it and still am tempted the next time there’s a new one. Rinse and repeat. We get hooked and “The Machine”, as you mentioned, reaps the reward.

      I’ll disagree about the Psy/Changeling series using Allegiance of Honor as an example. I made it about 30 percent before skimming the rest. I know it was meant to be a sort of ‘catch up with the characters’ book but with how it ended up length-wise and all the repetition… What really upsets me is the majority of problems are things that editors and beta readers should catch, basically things that could be fixed with relative ease. What I paid for it on Kindle and the book we got…it’s robbery. But I’m sucker (see my first paragraph) so I shelled out for it.

      • kaleigha says:

        And the really sad part is that great authors with great series get cut off in mid-series and have to turn indie, but others just seem to go on forever. And ever.

    • kaleigha says:

      Good lord, an eternal love triangle? That is like hell squared. Ugh. I do love to know what authors have coming up, don’t get me wrong, but years in advance? Maybe not so much. And like you say, decades might be pushing things a bit. Sadly, I always think what happens if the author dies and we never get those books? Morbid, I know, but it happens.

      Nalini and Ilona are great examples of those who I think could go on forever. They have big worlds, but have managed to keep it pretty much structured and well planned, so that it doesn’t ever feel like you are missing something. Everything ties together, every book storyline ties into an overall storyarc, and one arc is finished before another is started. And it continues to work.

      • pals20 says:

        “Sadly, I always think what happens if the author dies and we never get those books?” <– you're definitely not morbid or alone in this fear.

        An classic example of this is Stephen King and his Dark Tower series. When he had been in a huge accident and almost died, laid up in the hospital most of the fan mail he got was about what would happen to the incomplete Dark Tower books if he did die. I remember one sentence from a fan that said, "there it goes, there go the towers, they're falling now". And it spurred King to stop everything else and finish the series.

        And then the other day, I read about how G R R Martin has told the series ending of Game of Thrones to its TV creators so that they know how to finish it if he dies any time.

        • kaleigha says:

          I first starting thinking that way, honestly, with Christine Feehan and the Ghostwalkers. With so very many stories left to tell, and at that time there hadn’t been a book in over two years, it wasn’t looking good.

      • kaleigha says:

        Yeah, I figure they probably know even farther ahead, but are holding back to see how some new franchises do, like Black Panther and Doctor Strange.

  5. azteclady says:

    I don’t follow many series, whether those with an overarching plot arc, or just interconnected books in the same universe, precisely because it seems that authors don’t know when to stop writing them.

    I dropped the Carphatians years ago, because for me all the heroes were the same, only each one more powerful than the last–who had been described as *the* most powerful EVAH in his own book, and all the characters starting ‘sounding’ like the same one.

    I dropped the Black Dagger Brotherhood because the rules of the world building got broken and rewritten at the author’s whim, and all the characters started sounding the same. And then JR Ward dropped even the pretense of writing romance (don’t get me started on The Shadows), and I was done with her entirely.

    I am giving up on the Psy/Changeling books (though I will read the anthology coming out next month), for a number of reasons; but mainly because I don’t care for the introduction of an all powerful, mysterious evil genius whose only purpose is to provide extra conflict for a second series arc. I’m a curmudgeon, I think there was plenty of conflict already with the world in turmoil, and the PsyNet decaying, enough for a number of connected books within the series universe.

    And, as much as I love the Immortals After Dark series, I don’t know that I will bother to keep up. At one book every year (or two), when will we finally get Nix’s book? Will it even be written? (I don’t think there has been any sort of announcement about the Dacians either, and boy, would I love to read those stories!)

    • kaleigha says:

      Bwahaha…I have used that exact same line myself on the Carpathians more times than I can count “He is the most powerful of the Carpathians. Ever. Until the NEXT dude. Who is the most powerful of the Carpathians. Ever.” Kills me every time. And just how many legendary ancients are hanging around at this point, anyways?

      I still read the BDB, but I have to be in the right mood to tackle one. And sometimes, it does feel like I have to mentally prepare myself to dive in. For a while, it was so hard to keep the dozens of plot lines and side stories straight that I missed the main arc of the book. I found the last one much more tightly written, and it was a much better read, at least for me.

      The Psy/Cahngelings remain one of my holy grail series, but if you told me two years ago that I would be completely indifferent to the Immortals After Dark series, I would’ve laughed. Then slapped you. But here we are, and I am meh. For a while I felt like I had done something wrong, but when I paid attention I found a lot of people were in the same boat with the series, so I didn’t feel so bad. Not sure if it will ever get back on track for me, either, and that is too bad.

    • tomehuntress says:

      I haven’t read the Carpathians so I’m not going to start now. I also have stopped reading the BDB because really the series isn’t going anywhere storywise. I’ll still love the Psy-Changeling but I felt the last book was missing the climax or big conflict/confrontation we come to expect from Nalini. And as IAD, you are right. I feel like I’ve been waiting for Nix story and also like mote of the Dacians too.

      • azteclady says:

        Oh man, yes, Allegiance of Honor was such a mess for me. I wrote in my review that I like my genre fiction to have a point, and this book just…didn’t.

    • pals20 says:

      Yeah, WTF was The Shadows about? That was complete bullsh*t. Ward has gone completely nutso yet like an addict I always read her books. I don’t have her on my auto-buy anymore though, is that progress??

      • kaleigha says:

        That is the first step, the not reading the moment it comes out. I have a few series that I can leave for weeks now before I read the latest book. Kind of freeing, actually, to not be that panicked to get my hands on a certain book.

        • Dawn says:

          Although, to be fair, sometimes the not reading it the moment it comes out has other factors involved, like finances. I still want and will read the Psy books as soon as I can, but especially now that they’re in hb, I can’t always afford them immediately, even on Kindle. It took me almost a month after it came out to get AoH. and then I forced myself to wait because I was having surgery last week and would be housebound so I saved it for then to take my mind off the pain in my foot.

  6. Ashley says:

    I think it’s a case-by-case basis. As long as the new stories and spin-offs aren’t getting repetitive, then I’m good. But I also agree that spinning in circles is not only boring, but can ruin a good series. At least for me. Charlaine Harris did that with her Sookie Stackhouse series for me. I felt like the books were strong until she and her publisher decided to extend the series, not because the story was there, but just because they were such good moneymakers. Of course, that’s purely my biased opinion. But I think for a regular reader, you can just tell when the story starts to come off the rails. I’m actually anxious about this for one of my favorite series: Mercy Thompson is amazing, and I love her stories. Sounds like this next book is going to switch things up, but at what point does rolling from one crisis to another get boring and old hat? When there’s nothing more to learn about the characters themselves, that’s when it’s time to say goodbye.

    • kaleigha says:

      Yeah, you are right about it being case by case. As long as they are well written and fresh, I am happy. I think what gets me is when the repetition sets in, and things start to feel like a recycled version of the previous stuff, just with a new set of character names slapped on. I think maybe that is what didn’t work for me with Lady Midnight by Cassandra Clare…it felt like I had read it before, just with different names.

      For me, at least, what I am hoping about Mercy is that the side stories will help stave off the inevitable. I love the Alpha and Omega books, and with Moira getting her story soon, it adds new life and dimensions to the world. I do really hope for a Ben-centric book, too, but that might be pushing things.

      • Ashley says:

        I’d love to see Bran get a happy ending with a mate he loves as well, but I don’t know that that’s very realistic. And Ben, yes! How I adore Ben. I love how the character has come so far.

        • kaleigha says:

          Honestly, I think I would like Bran’s story even more than Ben’s…but I don’t know if that would ever happen. I would take great joy in seeing him boot his current broad onto the street and finding a true mate.

          • bfmason50 says:

            I would like a Bran story, and I do enjoy the Moor specially in the short story with the teen age werewolf (can’t think of her name).

    • psub20 says:

      “I think for a regular reader, you can just tell when the story starts to come off the rails” <– I ❤ this, it is just so so true. I don't think regular people realize that regular readers can see things coming a mile off. While the interest levels start dropping off around the same book, the "realization" only kicks in a few books/ years later, because we as regular readers are just so incredibly loyal.

      • kaleigha says:

        Yeah, a book or two in the run of a series that doesn’t grab you quite like the others is bound to happen. One let down after the other, or desperately trying to “find” new characters to drag out the series is something else.

  7. snapdragon says:

    I completely agree that the series needs to close on the Carpathians by Feehan.

    Stephanie Plum quit being good at about number 14 than they just got stupid and since the triangle will not be resolved it bugs the hell out of me. People need to grow up and change to interest me.

    Laurell K. Hamilton went off the rails with Anita Blake but she seems to have gotten back on the tracks the last few books so at least I have enjoyed them.

    I am much more interested in Sherrilyn’s League series than the Dark Hunter Series — The Dream Hunters were just stupid in my opinion.

    Anne Bishop had the black jewel trilogy which turned into 9 books in the end so I am hoping that The Others Series does the same thing.

    JD Robb — I so adore the series there has only been 2 books that I really went meh on. But there are still places that it can grow so I am happy to stay on the train.

    • kaleigha says:

      I actually liked The League books, too – I think I read the first three, and enjoyed them a lot. What is scary now is that it seems they jump all over time-wise. Something like Generation one, I think? Which means generation two or more. Ugh, that will take some effort to keep everyone straight.

  8. Alex says:

    It’s difficult to say goodbye to characters and story worlds of a series I love. But I would rather say goodbye than have a series I love turn into something I can no longer stand.

    This is exactly what happened with the Psy/Changeling series. I DNF’d the newest book and will not be continuing due to what feels like recycled plots and characters, the actual writing, and a few other long standing problems I’ve had that I just can’t tolerate anymore (especially with all the saccharine prose and what seems like, to me, a huge lack of editing). Because I have issues with the writing I don’t know if I’ll be able to stick with the Guild Hunter series either. I’ll likely continue but if it stretches out into a lot more books I will bid farewell.

    I’m also fatigued by the Immortals After Dark. At the current rate of release for new installments, the number of characters and plots that need stories told, and the recent expansion of the worldbuilding I feel like this one won’t end until 2027 as well. Or later. *shudders*

    I gave up on Black Dagger Brotherhood after John Matthew’s book. I just wasn’t really into that one so not following it has been easy, and I’ve never been tempted to dive back in. The same goes for Thea Harrison’s The Elder Races. I never got really into all the worldbuilding and not all of the characters interested me that much. However I love, LOVE, Dragos & Pia & their little family. I appreciate that Harrison keeps us updated with their lives through novellas rather than full books that include major series plot arcs.

    I quit Sherrilyn Kenyon’s Dark Hunter’s mostly because of the writing. Also never got into that story world much and it was almost too expansive. It seemed like instead of building on what she already had and adding nuance and depth she just added entirely new things. I think it takes a lot more skill to build a smaller, well-rounded story world than one with huge casts of characters and supernatural species and ever more rules.

    Sitting here writing about all the series I’ve abandoned makes me feel like a quitter. Come one, come all to hear me confess my reading sins!

    • kaleigha says:

      God, the giving up thing is hard, isn’t it? Especially if you are the uber-nerd OCD chick who is staring at the previous books on the shelf going “but, I must get the rest. So they all match”. Gag. Makes me nuts.

      I am ok on most of the Elder Races books, but Xavier’s book felt…off, to me. Like it was part of a different series. I do wonder how the switch to indie publishing will affect things, though. And it would be really, really nice to find out what is going on with things. There hasn’t been any word at all about what is coming up, and that makes me wonder how things are going. If anything, self-pubbing you think would mean you have more info, not less, but then what do I know.

      I have dropped a few series in my day, like Lara Adrian’s Midnight Breed, Christine Warren’s The Others (I either loved them or hated them, with nothing in between), and all of my young adult series except maybe two or three. In a way it is hard, but in another way it feels good to move on, too.

      • psub20 says:

        Ohh, Midnight Breed. Interestingly enough, Lara Adrian’s breed was one series which I use to buy diligently, dropped off, picked up and dropped again. I read a massive spoiler about the last book of first arc (and trust me it was a huge game-changer) and picked it up again. The second arc was about the challenges after the reveal and the children of the original breed couples. It was good stuff, but for no reason that I can think of, I have dropped off the series again. So a full circle.

        • kaleigha says:

          I was never a monster fan. It actually was a series I read because I “should”, if that makes sense. Everyone else seemed to love it, but while I enjoyed them enough as I was reading them they never stuck with me. I mean two days after I finished a book I couldn’t even tell you the main character’s names. But I loved Darker After Midnight, and Sterling had been the only standout for me through the whole series. For me, it seemed like the perfect time to wrap things up. I tried one more book after Darker, but it was back to the same old, same old and I finally let it go.

  9. Dawn says:

    I agree with the Carpathians, and the Dark Hunters. I didn’t mind the Dream Hunters being added, but it began to feel as if the world and number of characters became overwhelming. At this point, I think I would almost need to reread the entire series it’s been so long.

    The In Death series has had a few that I didn’t enjoy, but after a while, they began to feel formulaic, and while I still buy them (as I do the Dark Hunters), I don’t worry about getting them at release date now.

    The one that REALLY is annoying me is Lora Leigh’s The Breeds. Delay after delay, and when we finally get a new story, it feels like there’s a big gap in character and event information. I know a lot of us who read her books want to get Cassie’s story, but I feel like she keeps putting it off, trying to tide us over with other “tidbits” just to keep things going.

    • kaleigha says:

      Ah, yes. The Breeds. Pushbacks are one thing, but the total changing of a character’s backstory makes me bonkers. And when I am reading to update the character guide, it really stands out. Physical descriptions of main characters changing not just from book to book, but within their own book. Sections missing. Horrible editing. And still I can’t stop.

      I think I am more waiting for Dane’s book than Cassie’s…but if her fella is Ryhzan then I am all in. Weird, I know. Not sure how I feel about the introduction of the European Breeds considering that there are still so many characters from the past that need their stories told (like most of the Coyotes), but I guess we will see how that goes.

  10. Monika says:

    The thing is, I used to get so invested in a series and then found it difficult to stop long after I stopped liking it. Also, the first book you don’t like you decide to continue reading, in the hopes that the next one will be better again, and if it is bad, then you hope for the next and so on. What I also had/have a problem with, is just leaving out a book in the series; you always feel as if you might have missed some important development in the story arc.
    Of all the long-running series I have been following from the beginning, in Death is the only one I still enjoy whole-heartedly, even after more than 40 installments (not counting the novellas). I think the reason for that is – even though the books are a bit formulaic – there is character development – and there are books I like less, but then the next one will blow of my socks again. I do get a bit impatient with Eve always forgetting to attend the social gatherings she has promised, sometimes for reasons that are not life and death.
    Carpathians: also followed it from the beginning. The last book I really loved was Dark Slayer, one of the best IMHO, because it broke the formula, but it seemed to go downhill even before that. I also somewhat like Dimitri and Skyler’s story, had to read it after waiting for it for years and years.
    Dark Hunter: last book for me was Archeron and the only Dream Hunter story I really liked was Phantom Lover (V’Aiden and Erin); I think I am more intrigued with her League series, but have only read the first three books.
    Anita Blake: this series was really something different in the beginning, then Anita “caught” the ardeur (in Obsidian Butterfly?) and since then she has been “forced” to have practically non-stop sex with so many different partners that it has become impossible to keep track of them…
    Stephanie Plum: used to love how quirky and hilarious this series was with all the destroyed cars and Stephanie’s ineptitude, I got to book 19 with about three more on my TBR pile where they might stay indefinitively…
    Night Huntress: Frost really ended the series at the right point; I do hope she doesn’t completely butcher Vlad and Leila’s story (after the first two great installments book three was a disappointment for me).
    Charley Davidson is hovering on the brink (at least for me): her cluelessness and bungling are becoming stale, and if it weren’t for Reyes I would probably have already given up. Either Charley needs to get a clue or the series has to end.
    Series that are still going strong (for me):
    Mercy Thompson: I do hope one day she will manage to get rid of all the German language mistakes – they bug me no end… I think I might like the Alpha and Omega even better
    KD: still going strong, so I might see that at some point there will be an end. Hoping that instead she will do more books in the Hidden Legacy series (though I think that’s supposed to be a trilogy…)
    Lupi: the story arc seems far from resolved, love the stories with the Hellhound
    Jane Yellowrock: seems back on track now that Jane finally got laid. I do hope the Vamps from Europe will arrive at some point, after we have been preparing for that for at least two books…
    Still very much in love with Nalini’s two (PNR/UF) series, though AoH was NOT my favorite installment. I feel there are still so many stories to tell, but hopefully she will focus the next few books/stories more on individual couples again.

    • psub20 says:

      “Mercy Thompson: I do hope one day she will manage to get rid of all the German language mistakes – they bug me no end” <– I don't know German so didn't even realize this was a problem. But now that I know, it's gonna bug me too. It seems like this should fixed easily enough. German is a so-called "first world" language so there is no lack of people to help correct this. Surprising!

      • Monika says:

        As German is actually my first language, I cannot NOT notice. I can forgive the occasional spelling mistake, but it’s not just the spelling, but also capitalization (in German all nouns are capitalized). If you use a foreign language to add texture to a character, but then bungle it every time, it sort of defeats the purpose. The worst was when Zee was swearing in German (don’t remember in which book), and the swear word was misspelled, takes you right out of the mood. I actually did offer to help with the little German bits at one point, but Patricia Briggs replied that she had somebody already helping her with it; I only wish they were halfway competent…

        • azteclady says:

          I have never understood why authors who are using another language as part of a character’s background, don’t ask/hire someone who is fully bilingual in that language to check not only translation issues, but also usage issues. Something may be grammatically correct, and still be something that a native speaker of that language would NEVER say. And if the author cannot be bothered, their editors should definitely make a point of checking, and correcting, these.

          (Sorry to hijack–huge peeve for me; I’ve ranted about this online (over Spanish phrases) for at least eight years myself.)

          • Monika says:

            Azteclady: can you give an example of a book with faulty Spanish usage? Must be really difficult to find bilingual English/Spanish speakers, particularly in the US, hehe. I think many readers/fans would be only too glad to help out…
            And I agree, if a character says something in his “mother tongue” that a native speaker never would, it is not just a small mistake, but it ruins the whole mood and makes the use of a foreign language kind of pointless…

            • azteclady says:

              Whispering Rock, the third book in the Virgin River series by Robyn Carr. I wrote a lengthy rant about the series as a whole here, but if you haven’t read the series and plant to, you can scroll down to the end–the 7th footnote (yes, I’m that obsessive) details my specific issues with that one book.

            • psub20 says:

              “Must be really difficult to find bilingual English/Spanish speakers, particularly in the US,” <– I LOL'd. It's so ridiculous. And I completely agree about native speaker v/s grammatical correct, language. It has always bugged me when authors use old school Hindi words in the few, few, few books which are based in India (historicals mainly).

              I also have to give credit to Ilona Andrews here. They used Hindu mythology extensively in KD as well as Hidden Legacy and they have nailed the history and background without ANY cultural appropriation or white washing… Love it when that happens.

    • kaleigha says:

      Yes…I skipped the last Carpathian since like I said I can’t stand what’s her name, but then I start thinking that there was this whole monastery angle that probably introduced a bunch of new characters that I have missed. Ugh. And it is a pain when you get to the “I should read that” rather than “I want to read that” stage.

      I have seen a lot of people mention the Stephanie Plum books, but I have never checked one out. Er, when I have the TBR down to my target goal, that is. I know I will never get into Anita Blake because while I have heard that the first books were awesome, every single person has said that the latter ones went way off course.

      I started with Alpha and Omega, and I think I might even prefer it to Mercy, too. Love me some Charles. And of course, you usually get more Bran, too, which is always a bonus. My love for Hidden Legacy is a bit neurotic considering there is only one book so far, but I am so hoping for it to go beyond the original three. I guess it depends on sales, but I am totally hooked. Lupi is still on my to do list (of course), but Jane Yellowrock is tricky for me. The multiple potential love interests is fine for a book…maybe two…but past that it distracts me from the story. I can’t quite get into them like I want to because of it. I am really looking forward to the spin-off, though.

      Nalini is still my top three, and I hope that never, ever changes like it did for me and Kresley Cole. I think the best part, for me, about Allegiance of Honor, was Silver and Pax emerging as two characters I am very interested in getting stories about. I usually love all the stories, but it has been a while since I was anticipating a particular character getting their turn so much.

      • Monika says:

        I have a complicated relationship with Feehan books; I have stopped reading them (though I still keep buying them) and I also still hold out hope that the next one will be better, that maybe she will get back to her old style of writing and sometimes the blurb sounds kind of promising and then I read the reviews and it just seems hopeless.
        I can’t wait for the next book in the Hidden Legacy series and it’s only gotten worse since Ilona posted the first few chapters of the new book on her blog some time ago. I think I will try to get my hands on an ARC (unfortunately I’m not a weapons expert, so I will have to think of some other way)…

        • kaleigha says:

          I still read the Feehan books, but I don’t always expect them to read like a Feehan book anymore, if that makes any sense. I am pleasantly surprised when it feels like one of “her” books…even though the sometimes over-the-top Alphaness and choppy sentences have their own drawbacks. Hidden Legacy is one I am trying to not think about too much since I want it so much. I would go so far to say that it is my most anticipated book for next year.

          • Monika says:

            Yep, and if they don’t mess up the schedule again, book three is also supposed to come out next year, isn’t it?

            • kaleigha says:

              I think there is a reprint of book 1 (with a new cover), then Hidden Legacy, then book three all next year, something like 6 months apart for all of them. Nice.

    • Gabrielle says:

      With the Stphanie Plum series, I don’t mind the love triangle but what I didn’t like was her sleeping with both men in one book. I don’t know whether thats the prude in me or what. But the fact the men didn’t care that she is basically messing them both around, makes me think their relationship isn’t strong enough to settle with either of them.

      Also, now that I’ve noticed and cannot unnotice it: how old is her hamster?? Rex has been there since the beginning, we’re now on book 22 and he’s still alive. Hamsters only live for 3 years and whilst I don’t want him to die, he also seems like the only immortal hamster in the universe.

      I also agree with you point about Charley Davidson. She keeps making the same mistakes and the plot is driven by keeping secrets and its really annoying. I also think shes too powerful to the point where all her mistakes aren’t cute or funny they’re just stupid because she’s a God.i also don’t think I’d be reading them if it wasn’t for Reyes; although the fact that he also keeps keeping secrets is also annoying. They’re on the same side of this war yet they’re making it more difficult for themzelves because they don’t communicate.

      • kaleigha says:

        Nope, you lost me on the two guys one book. I don’t even like multiple love interests, so that would rule me out. Like you say, maybe I am prudish too, but I want to get invested in a couple, or even a potential couple will do, but more than one throws me way off.

        • psub20 says:

          I completely agree.. I stopped reading the series the day she slept with Ranger after she had slept with Morelli a book or two before. Not happening.

  11. bfmason50 says:

    Out of curiosity any of you guys and gals have a book that you wish the author would make into either a trilogy or a series? Mine would be The Host which was suppose to be a trilogy but the author has been silent on those books even after the Movie came out.

    • pals20 says:

      Wow, that is a great question. It made me realize I only read series now, and that too my go-to authors. It’s been a long time since I discovered a new writer and one who has written a stand-alone book.

      I think the industry itself is now series-based because of the popularity of long-running series. So even if an author submits a good stand-alone book, the publishers probably ask them to convert it into a series.

      But yeah, I will gladly ask for recommendations. I will also pick up The Host even though it is by the “stalker/hero” writer… LOL. Cheers!

      • kaleigha says:

        I went through my shelves, and I only found two stand alones. Well, one stand alone – The Host – and one that might, maybe, possibly one day get a sequel, and that was A Murder in Time by Julie McElwain. At least it ended not in a cliffhanger, but more open ended. I am surprised by how few there are, honestly.

    • kaleigha says:

      Good lord, The Host. I just finally last week removed The Seeker and The Soul from my “waiting for” list. I would love them, but unless she pulls a rabbit out of her hat I think we will be left hanging.

      • bfmason50 says:

        If I was any good at writing persuasively I would love to do an essay comparing and contrasting two Anthesis Alphas. I believe that Meg from the Others and Wanda/Wander from the Host in a sense are the true Alphas in their respective books. I call them the Anthesis Alpha since they do not resemble the typical “Alpha.” They do not have the shifter powers of Curan from KD series, Kate Daniels magic and expertise in weapons and fighting, nor god like powers of Raphael (Angel) from Guild Hunter series.

        Look at Meg, when the shit hits the fan who do they look to for answers, or already has the answer. I pity the poor bastard that would dare lay a finger on Meg. Just ask one of those mercenaries hired by the “Controller” to steal Meg back in book 1. The one in particular I am thinking about is the one that was captured by the Sanguineti (sp?) he got punished by Erabus (sp?). Then don’t forget she has the backing of the Elementals for hell they wanted to unleash Fire on all the bakeries of the city just because they delivered moldy food to a Little Bite. Plus all the other supernatural inhabitants of the city like Tess.

        Well I would love to write more on this but I have to go and do my Pizza Delivery job now LOL, and no I don’t work for Hot Crust in the courtyard!!!!

        • kaleigha says:

          Both Meg and Wanda have an innocent, almost child-like way, but both of them really do lead in their own way. And they get the unwavering support of those much physically stronger behind them. Both of them manage to see things in a way that the others around them don’t, too, which helps with the whole alphaness, too.

  12. tomehuntress says:

    I think the BDB should have ended with book 10. I don’t see enough development against their fight againts their enemies to get me to pick up the next book. When the Others series by Anne Bishop ends I’ll be sad but at least I can look forward to another series by her. Just imagine the Harry Potter series if it hadn’t ended with book 7. There would be a never ending threat of Voldemort. A story no matter how great will not be good without an ending.

    • azteclady says:

      That’s the thing with series with overarching plots, vs books written in the same universe (The Iron Seas, or, for a non-paranormal example, Suzanne Brockmann’s Troubleshooters.. I like both types, but in the first case, I really prefer it when authors stick to their guns and stop when they are done, instead of dragging it on through unsustainable, and more likely than not, unbelievable deux ex machina in the form of the next BIG evil.

      • kaleigha says:

        I am no writer, but I figure that a great series must have a beginning, a middle and an end, and dragging things out too far throw that out of whack. The only thing worse is when an author is shut down by their publishers before they get to wrap things up in a natural way. That sucks, too.

        • azteclady says:

          Oh that one kills me–particularly because often, due to contractual obligations, they cannot take the series elsewhere. I remember years ago, Sara Reinke’s Brethren series was in the works, but the original publisher (Dorchester) only bought the first two books before they went tits up. It was about five years before she could get the books to another publisher and continue the series. Elisabeth Naughton’s Stolen books were int he same boat.

          • kaleigha says:

            Eh, or the switch to indie pubbing, which is so hard to keep track of. I am so grateful Gena Showalter is finishing off the Alien Huntress series with a Dallas novella even though she is no longer associated with that publisher. The series wouldn’t be complete without his story, at least not for me, and she was really under no obligation to do it.

            • azteclady says:

              The thing is, not all authors–even great authors–are suited for self publishing. An author who does, must do all the behind the scenes stuff traditional publishers do, particularly good editing, and many self published authors just don’t invest enough in that side of things.

              • kaleigha says:

                And the total lack of updating and info from some of them makes me nuts. Alexandra Ivy is awesome about keeping everyone updated and her website current, but that is pretty rare. And she sticks to her release dates, too…I don’t remember any pushbacks from her at all, but most other self-pubbed have delays like crazy.

                • azteclady says:

                  Lack of updating: Oh, yes–you and I had commented before on that particular peeve.

                  I prefer how Courtney Milan does: there are no set dates on her releases, because a) she’s a slow writer, b) life happens. What she does have is a ‘new release alert’ newsletter, so if you like her stuff, you will always know when the next one is coming out.

                  • kaleigha says:

                    I probably wouldn’t get so bent out of shape if one of the main points of my blog was to keep people updated on release dates. I figure if I can try and keep track of countless authors and books for free, authors should be able to keep theirs straight when it is how they make their money.

                    • azteclady says:

                      Oh, man, this!!!

                      I can’t even imagine the hours per week that you spent updating the entries for the different series, let alone character guides, etc.

                      It truly is a labor of love, and I’m so grateful to you for doing it.

    • kaleigha says:

      Or even if it didn’t completely stop, maybe wrap up an arc and then start a new, distinctive arc for the next books. I did find the last BDB book and the first BDL book felt like a return to old school Ward, which was a treat.

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