Sunday, July 18, 2010

TSS: Series or Stand Alone?

The Sunday

Welcome to The Sunday Salon, a place for readers and book lovers to come together to escape into our books for a bit.  Each Sunday, we set aside some time to read and to discuss that reading, our reading throughout the past week, and other events in our lives.  Please join in the discussion here and take some time to visit some of the over 500 bloggers who participate.

My reading has been totally sporadic this summer.  It will take me forever to finish one book and then suddenly I'll have time to read again and two or three books will be read within a few days.  Unfortunately, this reading schedule or lack of one also means that content for the blog is pretty irregular.  I don't want to put up a lot of 'filler' content or overload on the memes and hops so some days there just isn't anything new around here.

Today, I actually have a topic I've been musing on for a bit though.  Are most of the books you read in a series or are they stand alone titles?  I have quite a bit of both and I enjoy both for different reasons.  I have noticed though that most of the books that we buy are books that continue a series we already own.  If I want to read a stand alone title, I'm more apt to borrow it from the library.  I think this purchasing divide comes about because I am already invested in the books in a series.  I know the characters, I know the author's style, and I know that I am most likely going to really enjoy the book.  Stand alone books are more of an unknown quantity for me unless I've already read other books by the same author.  I tend not to take too many risks with my money and that includes purchasing a book that I am not sure I will really like.  Unless a stand alone title is absolutely phenomenal, I don't tend to re-read them.  Often I will re-read series books to remind myself of the story when a new book comes out, especially if it has been a while since I've read that series.

As far as reading goes, I enjoy series books because I feel that I get to know the characters better as I watch them grow and develop over time.  With a stand alone title, the reader only gets a brief glimpse into certain moments in a character's life but multiple books allows the author to expand so much more.  On the other hand, it is sometimes nice to read a stand alone book and not have to think about any additional background or remember events from previous books.  I think stand alone books can also delve into some subject matter that might not be a good fit for a series.

Anyway, enough of my random ramblings on the subject.  I'd love to hear some of your thoughts!

Currently Reading:  Mind Games by Carolyn Crane

Recent Reviews (link to review):
Dark and Stormy Knights edited by P.N. Elrod
The Language of Secrets by Dianne Dixon
Lumby's Bounty by Gail Fraser

Need to Review:  Handbags and Homicide by Dorothy Howell

Current Giveaways:
July 2010 Giveaway (USA only) ends 7/26
$70 CSN Stores Giveaway (US and Canada) ends 7/31

Note: All opinions provided on this blog are my own. If a product was given to me for review, the source of that product is noted in the post. Links to are affiliate links and I do earn a small percentage for each item purchased through those links. Any other referral or associate links will be noted within the post.


  1. I like a series if it's a good series...

    It seems that a lot (or most) of the books that are coming out for young adults lately are in series. Since I read mostly YA fiction, I feel like I'm being forced to read series. And not all of them are things that I want to spend a lot of time on.

    I wish there were more stand-alone titles. I can't really think of many stand-alone books that were so good that I wished for a sequel. If the author has done his/her job, the stand-alone book should be satisfying enough to stand on its own.

  2. I'm a funny reader. I almost never read series books. And if I do, I generally only read the first book in the series!

    Odd, I know.

  3. Before blogging I didn't read series, not on purpose just didn't do it.

    I prefer stand alones. I love mystery's so I want to know what happened and who done it and how whoever solved it while keeeping me on the edge of my seat.

    I personally am not interested in characters as much as other bloggers.

    Actually I didn't understand the character love until the last book I finished A Note from an Acquaintance.

  4. I prefer reading series over stand-alone novels. I attributed to my years as a TV addict: I like to spend more time with the characters than you can do in one book. Also, many of the stand-alone novels I've come across are a bit depressing. I prefer lighter fare, no matter how much the dark stuff is supposed to stretch my mind and make me think.

  5. When I was younger, series were all I had an eye for. Lately I've been reading a lot of stand alone books, but there are still series that I enjoy so it's becoming more of a mixture. Though lately, I will pick a stand alone over a series though I'm not quite sure why.

  6. I like both series and stand-alone titles. I don't like series books that could've been just one and I wish some stand-alones were made into a series!

  7. Before I start blogging, I hardly own any books that is apart of a series. But things change as I start finding more and more great fantasy and epic series. Though I've to admit that I prefer ones that don't really drag to more than 10 books in a series. And I seriously hope that those I'm reading now won't exceed that limit.

  8. I don't really have a preference, my TBR pile and the books I read are well-mixed with both stand-alones and series books =) But the hard thing about some series, is that they can get old towards the end...

  9. I generally love reading books in a series but I find myself wishing more and more for some really great stand alone novels.

    I also agree with Shy that a lot of authors don't seem to know when to quit with a series. They keep dragging them out (coughStephaniePlumCough).

  10. Great post...I totally agree about being more apt to buy series books than stand-alone books. And I do re-read my series books more often than stand alones. I have found I'm just not satisfied with a stand alone any more, unless its over 500 pages and really in-depth.

  11. I agree with your post, stand alones are good, just that there aren't really many, series are good also, but it depends on how it flows and if the author gives it a sequel it doesn't need or it drags on. Mostly I do wish that there are more stand alones for fantasy, dystopians, and paranormal because I can't spend money on buying books all the time because I'm broke on buying books, and it's nice to see how authors would play on that concept. Still, I love series nevertheless, I probably wouldn't read a series though if it was 10+ books or more than 7 or 5, I'm more of a sequel, trilogy, saga person.


I love hearing from you! Please share your thoughts with me :-)