Do you prefer standalones or series?
It depends largely on the type of book and genre, but also on my reading mood. Standalones have the major advantage of being one story and not having to wait for the next installment year after year. On the other hand, the best part about a series is learning about the world in depth and following characters that you get to know so well.
When you read a standalone, do you wish there was more, or are you content that the story has finished?
Generally, when I read a standalone, I pick it up with the thought in mind that this story is going to wrap up in this book, so it’s very rare that I wish for more. It’s actually kind of relieving to read a standalone because I know I’m not going to be left on a cliffhanger for a year.
Are series sometimes too long?
Yes. A prime example of this is A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas. While I adore this series, and the spin offs are turning out to be so much better than expected, they are still unnecessary, because the main story ended with book 3 and it was a satisfying enough conclusion that would have left readers perfectly content. This extends to most series which are dragged out with spin offs and novellas.
Do you feel like some genres work better in series while others work better in standalones?
I’ve always felt that fantasy novels are always best done in a series, whereas genres like contemporary, mystery and historical fiction work better as standalones in my opinion.
What are some standalones you wish had continued? Are there any series you think should have stopped at the first book?
This is a hard one, since series by definition are written in such a way as to leave many questions hanging for the sequel to address. There are of course, several books that started out as standalones but later have spin off novels that just end up becoming a series and it’s very rare that I enjoy any like this.
Standalones that would have been wonderful as a series: Cemetery Boys, Sing Me Forgotten (still have my fingers crossed for this one), Lore, Angel Mage, The Candle and the Flame
Books that should have remained as standalones:
I read a few books this year that were the start of new series that I have a feeling are going to fall into this category, but I’m hesitant to judge since the sequels aren’t out for several more months. This is really a personal preference and I know it’s probably an unpopular opinion, but the Shatter Me series didn’t work for me at all. I struggled through the first two books and just stopped. The same goes for Air Awakens by Elise Kova.
Do you prefer series or standalones? Share your thoughts in the comments below!