Graphic courtesy of the lovely Valerie, who was kind enough to make me one when I bitched about not having enough time ♥♥

We’re going to talk about sequels today, friends! The reason? Well a few of my chums have decided to start a little friendly sequel challenge. Rashika, Val, Holly, and I had all decided that collectively we suck at sequels, so we should try to read them together. That’s fun, right? Only… while we were comparing our shelves, everyone else had like, a hundred sequels, and I started throwing unreleased crap on the list just to make it to 20. All my friends had assumed they were garbage at sequels, and I thought I was too. After all, I have had some on my shelf for quite some time, what was I doing?! But I guess the number I have on my shelves is not… so bad?

Basically, I started thinking: What exactly made me keep up with sequels? And did they maybe not have as great an impact on my reading as I had hoped?

Sequels are Comforting

The Pros:

Look, you know the world, you know the characters. It’s like seeing an old friend after a year or so. It’s familiar, it’s cozy, and sometimes, that’s really nice! No need to figure out a whole new style or world or whatever.

The Cons:

We’ve all heard of the dreaded “sequel slump”, wherein a sequel of a book you loved fails to impress. And sure, some sequels hit it out of the damn park, but a lot of times, I feel kind of underwhelmed. Like maybe that “old friend” wasn’t as awesome as I’d remembered?

Book One Was a Cliffhanger

The Pros:

Obviously, some evilly delightful author decided to end the book you were loving with every character’s life and limb in the balance. Did Sue survive the volcano? Will Mike and Joe stay together? I have no idea, because it ended with a non-ending that made me basically die inside for more, and now I must know everything.

The Cons:

We begin Chapter 1 with Sue’s narrative- obviously she’s still kickin’. The prologue is a glimpse of Mike and Joe’s wedding (or breakup, depending on how that particular cookie crumbles). Basically, we know the result pretty quickly. And after that, the high stakes you’ve built up in your mind seem to wane. Can the author pull you back in? Sometimes yes, but sometimes also no.

The Story is Awesome

The Pros: 

This goes without saying, I suppose- if you loved the story, the world, the characters, you’re probably eager to continue. And you presume that you’ll still like all those things. And you might! Some worlds I simply haven’t been able to get enough of- like the Scythe series, or ummm, Panem.

The Cons:

Sometimes shit changes. Hell, sometimes you are the one who changes. Whatever the case, either the world isn’t really your cup of tea anymore, you don’t like where the plot headed, whatever. Sometimes you just don’t fall in love with Book 2 or 72 as much as you loved the first one. And that is hard.

Do You Think Sequels are Hard?

I like polls. So I ask: Do you find sequels to be wildly unpredictable? Do you read them anyway? 

Do you find sequels to be wildly unpredictable? Do you read them anyway? 

View Results

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Also created by Val! And Rashika will get salty if I don’t tell you that she came up with the name! 

Unlike my cohorts, I only have a handful of sequels, woo! And, not all of them are even out yet. Because as I mentioned, I am a mess of a person. Or not, depending on how you look at it. Anyway, here are the books I want to read! Not all this year even, mind you. Just… someday. I am only including books I have access to/will have access to within a couple weeks. Because no need to have you all tell me to read like, Obsidio or something when I very clearly cannot 😉

Sorry, I didn’t link because I am tired. And kind of want to go read. Ironically, not a sequel. 🤔

So, which of these shall I try to prioritize? And what are your thoughts on sequels?

Posted January 5, 2018 by Shannon @ It Starts at Midnight in Discussion, Discussion Challenge , , / 91 Comments


91 responses to “Are Sequels a Struggle?

  1. I mean, I’m a series person, so I love sequels and tend to read them as soon as they come out. Unless I’m on the fence about continuing or it’s been so long that I’ve lost interest or something like that. Obviously sometimes they’re not as good as the first book or previous books, but I find it hard to really connect with characters in just one book, so I love getting to know the characters more, and yes it’s def a plus being able to jump right back into the world you already know. Doesn’t take nearly as much concentration. That’s why sequels are perfect for slumps! So anyway, I just love them lol.

    • I TOTALLY agree with you about the connecting with characters thing! I think that is why I have always loved series so much, but man, this year they just kept letting me DOWN! But I keep starting series, so I guess they really are my thing, too! 😀

  2. The comfort thing is definitely a mixed bag. I mean yes it is nice to revisit, especially if the first one rocked, but what irritates me is my inability to remember everything clearly lol. Even if I take notes- something slips through. Which of course is not the book’s fault . But still… and YES sometimes I eagerly await a sequel, and it comes out and then I’m like, meh. I’ll get to it. What is that all about? Or how can I love a book one and then book two just leaves me cold? Ugh book blogger problems.

    But generally speaking I’m a fan of sequels and will happily devour them. Hoping they don’t suck…

    Ooh I vote for A closed and Common Orbit, because if I could live in a sci fi world it might be that one? I didn’t like it as much Long Way but it was still pretty awesome. The cover of The Defiant makes me want to go read The Valiant right now. Obsidian and Stars wasn’t awesome but I liked it, because how many prehistoric stories do we get anyway? 🙂

    • Oh yes, for sure, who the hell can remember that stuff!? Especially when it’s likely been a year that has passed! On the off chance I do take notes for reviews, there’s no way I’ll still have them a year later, either. If it is a somewhat popular series, I can sometimes find spoilers for the first book, that is my only hope! The lukewarm feelings when it finally comes out pisses me off SO much!

      I do *need* to read A Closed and Common Orbit, because the third one will be out soon! I am putting it on my bedside shelf, so I can make sure I read it soon 😀 You REALLY need to read The Valiant. Apparently, the sequel is coming out in January now, which is fun! I pre-ordered it with LAST YEAR’s tax return, so I am exited for it to get gere hah. That is how I feel with Obsidian & Stars too- Idk why but I still want to know what happened, mostly because I need more mammoths.

      • Obsidian and Stars needed more mammoths, frankly, but there are some there. Actually the book needed more prehistoric creatures killing tribespeople in general, but it was still good. 🙂 And Closed and Common Orbit is SUCH a different story in that universe, but that whole setting just makes me all cozy lol.

        • Seriously that was my problem with the first book too. I should just give up and read the one other cavepeople book in existence. Something about a bear? Or am I losing my mind? (Both, could be both.)

          I think one of the reasons I have put Closed and Common Orbit on the back burner is because i loved the characters so much and it makes me a bit sad? But I do love the world, so I am definitely reading it!

          • I missed the Wayfarer crew in Orbit. Big time. It was still good but it’s really two stories that intertwine at the end, and I was in to one of the stories WAY more than the other, hence why it wasn’t as good for me as Long Way. Although to be fair the one story was about Lovelace, so there is that Long Way connection. And the planet featured in that story is really cool. 🙂

            Clan of the Cave Bear? I’ve never read it but I love that title. And daryl Hannah was in the movie?

  3. I think I always like reading sequels because of the whole ‘comforting’ aspect. If I start reading something completely new there’s always a chance I’m not going to like it, so sometimes it’s nice to open a book and immediately be dropped into a world you know and love. There definitely have been sequels I’ve read that have disappointed, but at least I know I’m going to love the world of the story! So I think it’s fair to say I’m a sequel fan! 🙂

  4. I like when all the books in a series have been released. It allows me to dive into them one after another. It is so satisfying to know the next book in your favourite read is available you know? Because you don’t want it to end. That is how I felt with Vampire Academy. I am so glad I read the series after all the books had been published and I loved all the books! It’s the same way with TV shows. I hate waiting. I get bored and by the time the next one comes around, I’m over it and I don’t care anymore. I hate waiting! Sometimes the book/show isn’t worth the wait and I’ve been very disappointed so I don’t care if I don’t get the latest release anymore because I prefer to have ALL of ’em 🙂

    • Now THAT is smart! Binge reading a series is probably the best way to do it anyway- that’s how I read most of my all-time favorite series, come to think of it. DAMN, you might really have something here! I think I am going to test this theory, because looking back, the series I loved the most I really have read all at once- and it makes sense, like you said, just like TV shows! Thanks for this 😀

  5. THIS. POST. I SUCK SO HARD AT SEQUELS!!! I mean, all the cons you listed above are accurate AF, but the main reason why I suck at them is because I tend to forget what the heck happened in the previous book. This is why I prefer to read series where all the books are already out. If they aren’t, the long waits always make me forget. T_T I do end up buying all of the sequels, but I never read any in fear that I’ll hate it just because I have no idea what’s going on. 🙁

    SEE, I SUCK SO HARD THAT I’VE ONLY READ ONE BOOK FROM YOUR LIST. And you should read it. Cress. (I suck so bad that I haven’t read Winter yet.)

    Awesome (but guilt-tripping) post, Shannon!!! <3

    • Aw thanks!! And YES- I always always forget what happened! Especially when you read one as an ARC, and then the next one comes out like, 3 years later. I haven’t the brain for such nonsense! I do that too, buy sequels and never read them, it is SUCH a problem. I had a feeling everyone would be pushing for Cress 😀

  6. Sequels.. That’s like the best love/hate relationship out there? I went as far as putting my monthly challenge in September on “Sequel September” just to have some motivation to get through those darned sequels. It’s not like I don’t want to read them but I’m distracted by other books all the time? All. The. Time.
    Pretty sure I’ll be having another Sequel September this year as well, haha.
    I love sequels, I do. There’s nothing better than going back into a world you loved and getting to go on more adventures, meeting more people and rekindling with those few characters you adored. Somehow, though, I’d rather pick up other books.. Because they’re new worlds to discover? Because they’re new releases? Because sometimes the pressure of being a book blogger and having to be up to date with the new books is getting to me? Ugh.
    I’ll have to find a way not to let my sequels go overboard by September, haha.

    • HA yesss you are so right, it IS a love/hate! I think the whole “ohhh new shiny!” is another great reason why sequels can fall by the wayside, great point! And the pressure of the shiny new books is also HUGE- you don’t want to be the only one not reading whatever the next “big” books are! Definitely a struggle!

  7. Great post, Shannon!

    Alas, I am RUBBISH at reading series and I wish I wasn’t. I was a huge series reader when I was younger – I devoured Harry Potter, The Old Kingdom, Inkworld, Noughts and Crosses, The Hunger Games – and then one day my interests changed and now I lean towards standalone books WAY more, but I’m trying to read more series because I miss that feeling of being enveloped in an entire world with characters who go on epic journeys that last three books or more.

    I hate to say it, but I think YA ruined series for me. YA has come on in leaps and bounds since I first started reading it, there are so many more original and diverse stories and SO many different genres and plenty more standalone YA books now too, but I was reading YA in those dark years from the late 2000s through to the early 2010s when trilogy after trilogy was released with exactly the same formula: ‘girl discovers she’s magical/a royal/the person who needs to lead the rebellion; girl can’t choose between nice best friend and hot bad boy; girl chooses, defeats the baddie and has children in the epilogue’.

    Thankfully series are much more original now, but all those books, particularly the huge amount of YA dystopian fiction that became popular after The Hunger Games, kind of ruined the joy of reading series for me. I started to expect disappointment until I didn’t want to read the sequels at all. The final nail in the coffin was the third book in the Delirium trilogy; I loved Delirium and Requiem felt like such a kick in the teeth!

    I’m slowly starting to get back into series now, but I can’t power through an entire series one book after the other like I used to. In many ways I’m so glad my reading has developed, but I do sometimes miss that excitement of finding a new series that I love. Anyway there’s my rambling over!

    • Aww thank you!! I used to be much better at it too- I think because before blogging, I only read books that I’d heard of, which meant that a lot of times, several, if not all, the books in the series were out so I could just read them all at once. DUDE I feel you with Requiem, that was the most disappointing book ever… until I read Allegiant hah. SO many of the series I started to fall in love with post-THG disappointed me at the end, actually, I think you nailed it! Blood Red Road ended crappily too. The only one I truly LOVED the ending of was Shatter Me and well… now we’re back again, sigh.

      I think I have been disappointed a lot by series lately too, which is why I have been so reluctant. Last year was BAD for me and sequels. I ended up feeling like I wasted my time with far too many series, so I definitely feel you. I hope we both have better luck in the future!!

  8. I stink at sequels and series in general. I am not sure why but you made excellent points and I’m sure all that stuff plays into it. I have a couple series/sequels I want to get to – The Half Bad sequel and final book and the Charlotte Holmes series are two I can think of right now. You should read The Denton Little sequel. It is fun and quick. I am not sure if I want to read RInger. I didn’t love the first book. Hope you do well getting to your sequels!

    • DUDE Half Lost (the last in that series) is one of my biggest disappointments of EVER- I hope you like it (people seem to either love it or hate it) but that’s like, another reason I am wary- there were so many series, like Half Bad, that really let me down! I am DEFINITELY reading Denton soon, I adored the first book, I have literally no reason to not have read it! And I feel the same about RInger, tbh. Though I *kind of* want to know how it ends? We’ll see 😉

  9. Kel

    I’m a little picky about sequels, especially if I really liked the first book, didn’t really love it, or am otherwise content with leaving the story there. If I find I consistently enjoy the sequels (a la Kate Daniels, The Others, Innkeeper Chronicles, Heartstikers), I grab the sequels. If not…it all depends on mood, time, and usually library availability.

      • Kel

        I used to complete every series I started (if the library had it). I felt compelled to see how it ended. That was back when I had way more free time. Somewhere along the way, I acknowledged that it was less about the *reading* for me and more about the *story.* And some stories didn’t interest me enough to continue, or I was content enough with where book 1 ended and didn’t need to see it continue (especially if I thought continuing would make it worse). I guess it’s just, make an honest assessment: do I NEED to see what happens next. If the answer is anything less than an emphatic YES!!!!, you can probably safely skip the sequel or at least move it to the back of the list. Good luck!

  10. I couldn’t agree more with this: “Sometimes shit changes. Hell, sometimes you are the one who changes.”

    I have sequels on sequels collecting dust on my shelf. It’s been at least half a decade and I still can’t even look at them and not feel guilty. These are usually books I read way back when and at the time I would have killed for a second novel. Nowadays, I can agree that I’ve changed or evolved into either not caring about them as much or simply not remembering why I even wanted it so much in the first place. It’s easy to get to the conclusion that I’m the common variable in all those problems. The weird thing is that I usually adore reading series (when they release closer together or have already been completed). I can’t, for the life of me, tell you why quite a few got left behind :/

    • Oh my goodness, YES, me too! Like- entire 6 book series that I just do not care about anymore, and it KILLS ME. But why make myself read them? This is a good lesson for me though, because now I do NOT let myself buy sequels anymore unless I loved book 1. And I am the same, I generally DO enjoy series, but so, so many got dropped by me too!

  11. Read A Conjuring of Light and Unbound. They were both really good. I usually never finish series. I start a lot of them, but then I get bored or distracted and forget about them. I guess I’m a standalone person.

  12. Sequels are a mixed bag for me. On one hand, I’ve read phenomenal sequels that I love and I’m always excited to find the next big thing that’s going to wow me. But on the other hand, they are a real commitment and I often end up neglecting all the awesome stand alones that I’m excited about because I want to stay current with series. Also, there are usually such gaps between books in a series that I forget most details and feel like I need to reread before each release – and I’m not a huge fan of rereading. Then there are series that feel like they could have been just one book. So yeah, basically I’m all over the place and have no definitive statements to make regarding series. Shocker!

    You know I’m going to pick the contemporaries for you to start with. LOL Like 9 Days and 9 Nights. Even though I was denied an arc for that one. But I ain’t hatin’ on Balzer+Bray. Much. LOL

    • The gaps I think are the hardest part. Maybe a year is doable, but some books that take more than that? I get so lost! (Imagine how the Game of Thrones fans feel 😂) I don’t like rereading either, unless it’s like, The HUnger Games, and I forget SO much too. It sucks extra if there are no spoilers to be found online, because then I am suuuper lost!

      AW I am so sorry that they denied you! They have randomly been denying people lately, from what I understand. And it is pretty damn shitty. I also really don’t want them to do that to me. Don’t you wish you were one of the lucky auto-approved so we didn’t have to fret about this stuff? UGH.

  13. You should read Cress (because I’m just finishing Cinder and will be reading Cress too haha)!

    But I definitely feel a panic when I know a book has a sequel. What if it’s not out yet? What if there are MORE books after and they’re not out yet? What if I forget everything that happened in Book 1? What if the series never ever ever ever ends?

    Ahhhhhh!!!! Honestly, as sad as it makes me to admit, I think Harry Potter burned me on sequels. It always felt like it took FOREVER for the next book to come out, and there were a million tiny details and characters that I usually forgot half of them by the time I got my hands on the next book! Plus, the 5th book was so incredibly dull that I couldn’t even get halfway through the 6th before I finally gave up, and now, all these years later I still don’t know how the series ends because I can’t make myself go back and start over. Sad day.

    • Aww yay, I hope you love it! I really do need to get my act together with that series haha. And yes- the book not being out part is HARD. I never remember book 1! EVER. And then I get so confused, and that could be part of the struggle for sure.

      I never read the Harry Potter sequels, can you believe it!? But I am reading the first book to my daughter, and she wants to read them- and then I heard there are like, almost 900 pages in the last one!? And I mean, come on! Who has that kind of time!? 😂 I think that’s another thing I hate- the “surprise” long series! Like you think it’s a trilogy, and then before it’s over, it’s been extended to 9 books and 23 novellas, ugh! I hope you do get to know how Harry ends one day though! 😀

  14. Sequels can be great if you can get your hands on the next book right after you’ve finished the first. But sometimes book two falls down on your expectations.
    I read a lot of indie and self-published work and sequels really vary in quality. Lots of authors have one good book in them but ask them to write more and they don’t work as well.
    Perhaps sequels work well for authors with an established reader following?

    • YEP totally agree, being able to dive right in would be SO much better! I think sequels are hard no matter the author- I have read some traditionally pubbed sequels where I am like “they let this out in the world?!” Guess sequels are just a crapshoot either way 😂

  15. I’m really, really, really bad at getting to sequels. I love the idea of them, but I find I get more excited with “new to me stories” that come out. My sequels get left behind. I also find I have a terrible memory when it comes to sequels. A lot of the time it’ll be at least a year before book two comes out, and by then I hardly remember what happened in book one lol. It’s hard to motivate myself to pick up book two when I know I’ll most likely be confused or have to actually do the work of reading a recap (and that’s IF I can find one) 😛

  16. I mostly do okay with sequels, but I also start many more series each year than that I follows through to the end. Sometimes I simply lose interest, like you mention at your third point or I change or my reading tastes change and I am just not as excited about the sequel anymore and other times it’s just because I have so many other things to read.

    The reason why I like sequels are pretty similar to your, they are comforting and sometimes when you don’t know what to read or are in a slump it’s great being able to pick up a sequel. I also think sequels are easier to get into, especially when it comes to sci-fi and fantasy, you already know the world and can easily slip back into the series.

    Those cliffhanger endings do always seem easier to remember and can make me curious about what happens next. Although I’ve also had a few sequel that quickly resolve the cliffhanger and it’s difficult to keep the excitement up after that. Great post!

    • That is definitely a good point, SO many books, simply too little time to read all the sequels! Especially when sometimes you don’t even know it’ll BE a series going into it! I think the world thing is very important in sci-fi and fantasy- and I also find that I am more annoyed by contemporary sequels, which is kind of weird. And thank you SO much 😀

  17. I LOVEE the feel of a good cliffhanger, it gets me excited about the series and more creative in my posts/interactions. I do find that the bigger the hype, the most disappointing the sequel is. And even though I AM PUMPED for the sequel, it might take me actual YEARS to read it, which doesn’t help anyone.

    And since I read a lot of YA fantasy, I tend to forget A LOT which makes the reading experience frustrating.

    Love this post Shannon, and I love what a team effort it was!

    • HA same, actually, makes me want to read the sequel more, that’s for sure! That is how I feel with sequels too, the internal hype can be even worse! (Looking at you, Into the Bright Unknown, grrr.) And seriously, fantasy can be SO hard to remember, with all the world rules and details! Thank you so much 😀

  18. Omg that sequel list is huge. And also, “chums”, what are you? french canadian? Anyways.

    My #1 problem with sequels is that I. DO. NOT. REMEMBER. ANYTHING from the first book. Or the prequels. And it just sucks because I don’t have time to reread the first book? I AM MAKING TIME THIS YEAR THOUGH. Those sequels are GOING DOWn.

    <3

    • Chum is a fun word, shhh. Only one of us is French Canadian, and spoiler, it isn’t me. I don’t remember anything either- it’s too HARD especially when you read like, a billion books a year, and then a full year (or longer!) later they’re like “no intro, let’s jump into this random-ass world with the silly rules!” and it’s a BIG nope.

  19. I probably love contemporaries as much as I do, because they do not tend to be series. If I love a world and the characters, I should be grateful that there are more books, which allow me the privilege of enjoying them longer. The reality is, that I tend to lose track of sequels, because there can be so much time between each book. I am so much better with sequels, when the whole series is finished. I was quite proud of the number of sequels I read towards the end of the year, but there is still lots of room for improvement.

  20. I am definitely one who struggles with sequels. I always get excited by a new series but the wait for the next installment loses it’s novelty and I almost never end up finishing the series. Like someone else mentioned I prefer to try and read series that are finished or only have 1 book left to be released. I am much more likely to finish them then 🙂

    Also my recommendation from your list is Traitor to the Throne. I think I actually enjoyed this more than Rebel of the Sands.

    • OOOH I am glad to know that you enjoyed Traitor to the Throne more! I liked Rebel of the Sands, but I didn’t *love* it, so this makes me want to read it more, thanks 😀

      And yeah, the novelty is a really good point- because you see all these completely new concepts and worlds, and it is hard to keep up interest for one you’ve already read about!

  21. I’m actually having the opposite problem lol. I tend to always make myself power through series – even when I would rather give them up – because I am curious to a fault and cannot leave things unfinished. So while I def agree with all your points – especially the cliffhanger one, ouch, they’re the worst – I actually made it my goals to DNF series this year. I just don’t have the time to commit to things that don’t intrigue me. So I’m actually only making myself continue with series if I no less than 100% interested.

    But from your list, I’d say Cress. Personal least fave of the series but Winter is SO DAMN GOOD that you have to push through to it. It’s so worth it. And I thought Traitor to the Throne was much better than Rebel of the Sands if you’re iffy about that one. 🙂

    • OOOH girl, I have been there! I just did that with a book I was “meh” about, and of course, didn’t like the sequel at all, and so WHY the hell did I read it!? I think I am curious like you- I can’t *not* know, which is ridiculous, because why do I even care!?

      I am SO glad to hear the love for Traitor, because that was kind of my exact issue 😂 And I have been hearing TONS of love for Winter, so I guess I am reading Cress if for no other reason than to get to it, hhah!

  22. It depends on the series. Sometimes, the direction an author takes can kind of be traced in the first book. But, to be quite honest, I haven’t read as many series as I would like, and so I am working on that this year. A Conjuring of Light, for example, continued to scare the daylights out of me repeatedly. Like, yes, it’s different than the first two books in that series. But, heck yes for the change in tone and pacing. Same thing with Blue Lily, Lily Blue, which is my favorite in the Raven Cycle series. I have a lot to read this year. Much excite. Also: Sue, Mike, and Joe deserve a happy ending. You never know how that will come about.

  23. shooting

    I said I like sequels but I still somehow fail at them. LOL If the books aren’t already out, then I tend to just not have time to read them when they DO come out. That’s why in the past couple years I’ve tried to power through some series that were finished, or almost finished, and it worked pretty well. Definitely read Cress – I still have Winter to read, but Cress is so far my favorite I think!! I also need to read the last two in the Darker Shade of Magic series. And I need the last like…three? volumes of Saga I think. At any rate, I want to read more of my own books (non- review books in general) so that I can either finish or get through some of these series/books with sequels that I want to read.

    -Lauren
    http://www.shootingstarsmag.net

    • That is such a good point, because timing IS a big thing. And some of them take AGES, it seems. That is exactly how I am- so many “me” books that I need to read, which all of these are. But then I go ahead and request more crap 😉 Good luck to you!

  24. My big struggle is I will start a book that I then discover is usually mid-way through a series. I probably have over 100 series I could put on my list to work through. Crazy.

  25. I love to read sequels because I like to try and finish a series before I jump to the next. At times I do face a huge disappointment with the sequels which might make me drop the series altogether!

  26. I do like to read sequels. I find that most of the time a sequel is warranted but sometimes I do see bad sequels where the author goes a whole new direction. Most of the time it’s the former thankfully. I would highly recommend Obsidian and Stars and also anything by Maggie Stiefvater is going to be awesome. I read the whole Raven Cycle last year and it was amazing. Great post!

    • Thanks! I think sometimes a different direction is even okay, but sometimes it makes NO sense, and that’s bad. And sometimes, it’s even TOO similar and I am there like “what even was the point of this!?”. Like, I DO love series but… 2017 was a bad year for me and sequels so I think I am wary in general haha

  27. I love series, but yes it can be so difficult. When a second book comes out it’s like, do I buy it? What if it has second book slump? What if I loved the first book, but now this one sucks? It’s tough! Especially when a series doesn’t end well also. That’s the worst! Great post. 🙂

  28. I adore a well written series! It feels like coming home to family! I sometimes feel like I stalk these books and pre-order months ahead of time just to make sure I don’t miss what’s next.

    That being said – I hate when an author ends in a cliffhanger to coerce me into buying a sequel. If you did your job well, no cliffhanger is needed – I will be happy to one-click what’s coming next!

    • Oh same! I pre-order sequels like, the second I can haha. And then, you know, half of them sit on my shelves for years 😉 You do have a very good point about cliffhangers, too! I do like at LEAST a setup to the next book though- but I have also read plenty of good ones that required no shady business at all!

  29. SABINA

    OK I HAVE TO comment cus https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/17234659-ten-thousand-skies-above-you?ac=1&from_search=true IS a series I stumbled into because I picked up the first book for a buck at the dollarama …I bought the whole series and will buy all the books she writes like the stalker I am.
    https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/25551332-unbound?ac=1&from_search=true this I will be getting because I loved, LOVED the first series (Unwind) ..not sure how I stumbled upon it.
    https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/13206828-cress?ac=1&from_search=true OMG YES, so much fun to read and sometimes I had to double back to figure out who was what and what was going on but I did buy all the books (But MIGHT have one book I won that’s autographed)
    I SERIOUSLY hope you’re going to read and review all of those books so I can stalk you as well.

    • Aw thanks so much! Have you read Claudia Gray’s Defy the Stars? SO good. I have the last two in the Ten Thousand Skies series, and I REALLY want to get to them soon. OH and Neal Shusterman has a new series, too! Scythe is phenomenal! (I don’t know HOW I haven’t read Unbound yet but I need to remedy that!)

  30. I’m not terrible with sequels but I’m also not very good at it! Either I devour them all in one go or wait months to pick up the next one. Because of this I tend to be very picky when it comes to starting ANY series.

  31. Omg I love series but somehow I’m always behind on completing them! I’ve been meaning to start A Torch Against the night for like a year now but I keep postponing which is weird considering I LOVED An Ember in the Ashes 😛 And wow list is pretty big too! I hope you read them all soon <3 🙂

  32. Sequels definitely scare me and I tend to put them off for a long time because I’m afraid that they won’t live up to how good book one was… Also if a sequel isn’t out when I read book one, chances are I will totally forget what happened in book one. Whoops!!

  33. Oh yes, I’m tagging along with this. I’m bloody hopeless when it comes to sequels, especially finales. I read the first two books and for some reason convince myself not to waste my time, finales are always shit and bitches will pull a Veronica Roth and I’ll lose my shit. Not this year my friends. Funnily, I didn’t have any blogging goals this year and now I have a lost of them.

    Next year’s goal will be to stop reading end of year blogging goal posts because everyone is adding to mine unknowingly. Bastards.

    I miss you Shannon, I must start leaving comments again rather than just reading your posts like a creepy stalker.

    • YAY you definitely must! Finales are the bane of my damn existence, I think. Because of shit like Allegiant and Requiem and freaking Half Lost. I tell you, it’s hard to maintain trust!

      HA not reading goals probably is THE best goal, I have to agree! And YES- I always read your posts in my email because I am lazy, but I seriously need to get back to commenting on yours too, I miss you too! I will see you on Twitter but because of the time difference it’s generally in my “in case you missed it” section and I sob internally 😀

  34. I am terrible when it comes to sequels. I love them but I am terrible at getting around to reading them. If I don’t read sequels one after another I will end up forgetting what happened. Then, when the sequel is released I want to reread the previous books for a refresher so the sequel never gets read. It’s hard.

  35. The only sequel I’ve read from your collage is Cress. It was really good!
    I do much better when I read a series all in one shot. Otherwise, I just have a field day with book 1 and never give the series another look.

  36. As a kid, I never really questioned sequels. They usually had all been released by the time I started reading something, and it never occurred to me to NOT read them all. Now that I’m reading more current stuff, I really struggle with finishing series because I lose track of the storyline, or lose enthusiasm, or just plain forget. That being said, I LOVE the sequels on your list that I’ve read–probably because the reason I read them is that I loved the series. That would be: Denton LIttle, Cress, Conjuring of LIght, Saga, Our Dark Duet, and Unbound.

    • YES that is how it used to be, right!? (Except The Baby-Sitters Club for me, but the sequels were out every MONTH, not every year!) I will say, the highest on my list are Denton, Saga, and Unbound- all 3 are on my “must read ASAP’ shelf in my room!

  37. I struggle to remember that there is a sequel! Most of the time I’ll forget it and the wonder how I missed it when I come across the 3rd or 4th book.

    Great post!

  38. I love marathoning series, but every once in a while there is one book in the series that will fall short or I won’t be able to finish and it almost taints the entire thing, so I get where you are coming from with the fear. However, most of the time it is worth it and every once in a while the sequel is actually *better* than the original since it might add so much. Just think if Harry Potter or Percy Jackson or The Hunger Games had ended with the first book. It would have changed everything. Great post!

  39. I love reading series. The only time that I get off track with series is if I read a new release and have to wait for a sequel to come out. I often get side-tracked with other books, or I feel like I need to reread the prior books before I can read the sequel. If an entire series is already finished and I pick it up, I can devour it!

  40. Agh I’m chronically terrified of sequels. 😂😂I often find they don’t even live up to the first one?!? Or if I didn’t love the first one enough I then never feel like going on to the sequels. IT’S A PROBLEM AND I AM ASHAMED. However you need to read the rest of the Raven Cycle asap, Shannon, have I not been shouting enough here.

  41. I love sequels and I’m actually pretty good at keeping up with them. My kryptonite is series enders. I’m terrible about reading that last book. Usually because I’m not ready to say goodbye to the world or the characters. I do tend to get sidetracked on picking up sequels when I read the first book close to its release date and I get behind a few books. At that point, I just wait for all the books to be out if it’s a series with four books or less.

    -Jessie H./Rose Red
    goldiloxandthethreeweres.blogspot.com

  42. Sequels are awesome and I struggle. I love getting into characters and knowing them so well, and I love powering through and reading to know how cliffhangers and plot lines get solved. BUT if I don’t buy a box set from the get I will probably forget to continue with the series. I also don’t like binge reading series, I like reading a different book in between and sometimes that leads to me forgetting… whoops!

    I WILL GET TO ALL THE SEQUELS AT SOME POINT THOUGH!

  43. There is so much expectation wrapped up in sequels and sometimes they fail HARD. I’m always trepidatious to pick up a sequel…what if it isn’t as good as the first book? I can’t remember wth happened in book one so is it worth reading book two? And sometimes it is a pure failure to realize that another book in the series has come out!

  44. Sequels are such tricky things, I usually tend to avoid them but there’s only so much a bookworm can stop oneself from reading 😀 The first series I ever read (I’m pretty sure this wouldn’t come by as a surprise, haha) was Harry Potter and of course, I loved it and all that jazz. But then I read a few others and ugh, I was downright irritated because somehow the second book (especially if its’ the middle one in a trilogy) is such a filler and boring and I just get frustrated because I’ll have to continue reading since the third one might have this amazing twist. Yeah…well..sorry for the rant, hehe.

    But yes, I think you are at a better place in terms of your pending sequels and I hope you enjoy all of them! <3

  45. Ali

    I have a hard time with sequels, they tend to make me not want to finish a series. But The Defiant is on my list to read.

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