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Tuesday Thingers: Series

Do you collect any series? Do you read series books? Fantasy? Mystery? Science fiction? Religious? Other genre? Do you use the series feature in [Library Thing] to help you find new books or figure out what you might be missing from a series?

I don’t “collect” book series per se and those that I do have are not recent ones. I have the original Dune series, the original Foundation trilogy, the original Riverworld series by Philip Jose Farmer, the Space trilogy by C.S. Lewis, the Hyperion Cantos and, of course, the Lord of the Rings trilogy (plus one).

I have these largely because, from my perspective, they are classics. I have become less and less a fan of series over the years. There’s two reasons for that, both all too prevalent in the SF genre.

One is that so many books come billed as the first in a series. To me, the fact you can write more than one book involving the same characters or world does not mean they justify more than one book. In fact, I am rarely pick up any relatively new book that’s labeled as the first in a series because I know it will leave things open and I may not care enough to read the subsequent books to close out the story thread that might be of interest to me.

Second is what’s happened to the Dune series. From my perspective, the series was weakening on its own once we moved into the fifth and sixth books. But the spate of prequels and the like from Brian Herbert and Kevin Anderson over the last several years simply trades on and — and damages — the original series. Even expert writers can fall into the trap of trying to extend a series only to weaken it, as Asimov did with his Foundation-related novels in the 1980s.

As a result, I have not yet used the series feature and am unlikely to.


Violence is the last refuge of the incompetent.

Isaac Asimov, Foundation

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2 comments to Tuesday Thingers: Series

  • thanks for that thoughtful response 🙂

  • Ali

    “The fact you can write more than one book involving the same characters or world does not mean they justify more than one book.”

    Well said. As much as I might enjoy one book with those characters and world, it doesn’t mean I want to sign on to hang out with them for years.