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Monday, August 29, 2011

Book Chatter (7): Standalone VS Series

Pull up a chair, relax, and let’s discuss the wonderful world of books.

Do you enjoy discussing anything and everything pertaining to books? YES!

Well, you’ve come to the right place. Every week, I’ll be sharing my thoughts on various book topics and offering prizes that pertain to the topic at hand. That’s not all – You will get to choose the weekly topic by voting on which topic to discuss for the following week. You will also be able to suggest topics by clicking on this FORM.

Standalone VS Series

Characters come and go as we read book after book while escaping into their worlds. Some characters enter our lives and leave an unforgettable impression upon us. It’s hard to let go but in the end, we may or may not find ourselves satisfied with the end of their stories. While everyone has their own preference, I guess it depends on what we look for in our books.

I’ve read my share of remarkable books and the one thing that always seems to be consistent after I turn the last page is how the characters fare in the future? Or, will there be a sequel? These questions are the reasons why I prefer a series to a standalone.

If the book left a great impression upon me in leading me to care about the characters, then of course, I want more. The majority of the books I own are series based. I have loved and cried right alongside these characters. This type of connection is often lacking from the standalones that I read. I don’t fully get to know the characters well enough to care much about them. That being said, I do have a few standalone favorites that managed to sweep me off my feet. But in the end, it comes down to how deeply invested I am in the characters’ lives by the time I turn the last page.

Here’s a list of my favorite Standalones & Series

Favorite Standalones (Top 5)
Going too Far by Jennifer Echols
Ice by Sarah Beth Durst
Impossible by Nancy Werlin
On the Jellicoe Road by Melina Marchetta
The Sky is Everywhere by Jandy Nelson

Favorite Series (I have way too many, so I’ll do top 10 (5 Adult/5 YA) in no particular order – means I’ve read most at least 2 times & there are 2 or more books out)

Favorite Adult Series

Chicagoland Vampires by Chloe Neill
Fever Series by Karen Marie Moning
Magic Study by Maria Snyder
Night Huntress Series by Jeaniene Frost
Shifter Series by Rachel Vincent

Favorite YA Series

The Hunger Games Series by Suzanne Collins
The Iron Fey Series by Julie Kagawa
The Mortal Instruments by Cassandra Clare
The Twilight Saga by Stephenie Meyer
Vampire Academy Series by Richelle Mead

What do you prefer? What are some of your favorite standalones/series books?


Winner will receive his/her choice of favorite standalone/series book - pre-orders included!
Rules: 1 Winner! Must comment to be eligible.

Please fill out this FORM!

Contest ends @ 11:59pm (CST) September 12, 2011. US & Canadian Residents only.


  1. I love series. I love staying with characters for more than just a single book. Standalone books are great also but I tend to gravitate toward the series 9 times out of 10.


  2. I LOVE the Sky is Everywhere!(just ahd to scream that).

    I'm a big fan of series, but I feel a lot of YA series are forced and tend to lose momentum. My favorite Author, R.A. Salvatore, is a genius when it come to series. Every book increases with tension and plot until by the last one, you're pulling out your hair. If a series can do that, and not recycle the same plot over and over, I'm all about the series.

  3. I'm growing weary of series books. Its seems like all of the books I read lately are a part of a series. I guess it wouldn't be so darn bad if most of the books didn't end on huge cliffhangers!!! UGH!

    My favorite stand alone novel as of late is a middle grade fiction book called Plain Kate.

  4. I grew up reading stand alone. But I must admit I love series to. I also like series where I get a glimpse at the struggles of characters I've met vaguely in book one but wanted to get to know better.

  5. I like both, but I do gravitate toward series more. Perhaps because I read mostly fantasy and paranormal which lend themselves to series. When I do read a series, I love when the end leaves me dying to read more, even if it doesn't end happily.

    I love The Hunger Games series, The Iron Fey series, Linger, etc series, and many more.

  6. Although I do read standalones I prefer series. Some of my faves are Lords of the Underworld by Gena Showalter and Georgina Kincaid by Richelle Mead.

  7. I prefer to read serie than standalones. I like getting to know the character in a book.

  8. I tend to like both but if I'm intrigued enough by the premise & I think it's fresh then I prefer a series. However, in that same breath, I also love stand-alone because if it's a fresh idea & it's quick paced then it makes it a book that I love to re-read various times. I find it hard to re-read series; unless I'm very devoted to them & love the way the author writes the characters. My only instances of this are in regards to the Iron Fey series & of course - the Harry Potter series. I never tire of re-reading those.

  9. I much prefer series to stand alone because I feel it opens to a lot more character growth! My favorites series... well that's a really hard one! Everything by Richelle Mead, Shifters seris by Rachel VIncent, everything by Jeaniene Frost, Mortal instruments by Cassie Clare, BDB by JR Ward, Immortals After Dark by Kresley Cole.. Do I need to keep going? LOL

  10. I like the finality of stand alone books. I like knowing that I'm going to get an amazing and concise look into these characters lives. Sometimes too much can be a bad thing. My problem with series is that I get bored. The few exceptions to this are The Hunger Games series and the Harry Potter series. I'm going to look in to some of your series suggestions, though!

  11. I think it's easier to commit to a standalone, but I am in love with a lot of series too - like Bloody Jack and The Looking Glass Wars. I like standalones, especially ones that maybe relate to a book series. Like I am dying to read Down the Myserly River by Bill Willingham, which is based in the Fables world but is a standalone novel.

  12. I agree with Gina. I'm tired of all the cliffhangers! I hate waiting years to find out how a story ends. If series books came out closer together I wouldn't mind but most are a year apart so several years to finish a series.

  13. I do enjoy a good series. In the beginning, I'd wait until all of the books came out. These days though, it's just not possible. Even some series that were 'over' currently have WIP. I love a standalone. Unfortunately, they are few and far between. One of the most haunting that I recently read was Forbidden by Tabitha Suzuma. Floored.
    But if I really dig down. It's all about the series for me. The all encompassing knowledge of the world provided. I don't think I need to mention HP. One of my favorites series is the Uglies by Scott Westerfeld. It sparked my dystopian fanaticism. I'm so glad it did too!

  14. I love series because they allow me to spend time with characters I adore. However, I think it's very tricky, series. If I don't enjoy the 1st book in the series -- or even if I do enjoy but feel like there's nothing more about the world I'd like to explore (which is the case for the majority of 1st-book-in-the-series I've read) -- I won't pick up the rest.

    However, in the case of stand-alones, if I didn't enjoy the first book I read, I'd pick up the second by the author if the premise is interesting enough.

  15. I like series because I like adventuring with the characters, but I also like the freedom to imagine futures with a I don't know. I love some series and I love some standalones. I can't pick!

  16. i like series better because i feel like if a read a really interesting stand alone im always left wanting more and i would never be satisfied so now i try to read mostly series.

  17. It depends, if it's tons of books and I have to wait a long time between reading them all I usually prefer stand-alone.

  18. I think the problem with a book series is that you start to get so into the story that if the new book in the series doesn't deliver it ruins it all the others. So basically I love series as long as it says amazing all the way through.

  19. Hmmm, well I love series, but I also love stand-alones. I love series as long as they only go on for as long as they need to, and if they don't dwindle in quality. I've had a few series where I just couldn't continue, and then I've also started a series and disliked it, but was curious and felt obligated to see how it I read an entire series of books I didn't like, just so I'd see how it ended...although I did like one aspect of the series, they had these neat poems. :) Anyways, the thing I love about series are that you get more of the characters, but with stand-alones, I love the sense of completion. The ending may not have been completely definitive, but you're left satisfied, and you aren't left waiting for more books. :P

    Series I loved: TMI, The Iron Fey, Inkheart Trilogy (although I didn't like the last book as much), HP (who doesn't love that one? :P haha), Kelley Armstrong's Women of the Otherworld Series & DP Series, and the Wolves of Mercy Falls Trilogy.
    Stand-alones I loved: Anna and the French Kiss, Amy & Roger's Epic Detour, Sean Griswold's Head, Forbidden, and Water for Elephants.

    Great questions, Tina! :D

  20. I love standalone books but I'm more of a series girl-- especially YA books. My favorite YA series would have to be Vampire Academy by Richelle Mead. She takes you through so many emotions it's insane & Rose is by far my favorite character ever written. (:

  21. I'm with stand alone, I've had bad luck with series. example, the Need series by Carrie Jone? HUGE fan of those books, but when the third one finally came out I had totally forgotten the plot and who was with who and on what team I was :/

    and The House Of Night Series, I just got tired of them. bad situation after the other and it just got boring...

    so yeah, I'm with stand alone :) I Love Love LOOOOOVE Going Too Far by Jennifer Echols :D!

    or the Sky is Everywhere by Jandy Nelson, Take Me There by Carolee Dean, Twenty Boy Summer by Sarah Ockler!

    also my favorite genre is realistic fiction and most of those are stand alone.

    in the end: I'll go with stand alone, always :))

  22. I like short series best, such as trilogies. Sometimes longer series go astray and the later books aren't as good, and when I really enjoy a character/world I like seeing them again. Series really do have better world, character, and plot developments so I love them for that. But I prefer stand alones when traveling so I don't have to worry about finding the next one!

  23. I love series have a lot of favorites
    Richelle Mead Vampire academy I love that one! The Iron Fey, Jeaniene Frost, Mortal instruments are at the top of my list of favorites!
    I don't know alot of stand alones but I love stolen by Lucy christopher!

  24. I read stand alones but I prefer series. I always want to know what happens next.


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