I read a lot, and with my goal of catching up on series this year, it is no surprise that I might find a few series whose endings I am less than happy with. It's a fact of bookish life that a series will wrap up in a way that satisfies the author and not necessarily each and ever reader.And I am okay with that. I want books that are true to the characters and to the stories they contain.
But sometimes I wonder, is it my fault when upon finishing a series with a less than stellar ending I immediately wonder why I wasted my time on it? Or is the book to blame when all I am left with is that horrible urge to toss the book from a window?
I recently finished a series where the last book pulled what I am calling a "dream resolution."(No, I'm not naming names here.)
You know, those endings where you basically get told it was all a dream and none of it really happened? Well, this one was like that. Only instead of being a dream, choices were made that changed things. The "climax" basically wiped out the entire purpose of the series and everything that had happened in the previous books became a giant waste of my time.
Why should I have taken the journey and bonded with these characters when they were no longer going to be the characters I first met with or encountered along their character arcs?
Would you consider this to be a valid plot pathway? The author taking the easy way out after writing themselves into a corner? Or something in between?
But it's not just last books that I'm having a problem with lately. Prequel novellas are causing me great heartache.
Normally I love it when an author gives us more from a series I love and adore. But lately I am finding these post-series-completion-prequel-novellas to be at best a disappointment and at worst a reason to question my enjoyment of the series itself.
Because, with few exceptions, if I would have read these novellas before reading the first books, I never would have picked the series up. It strained our relationships that badly.
And that is such a shame to admit. Because the story and writing in the actual books were so much better than what I got from the novellas.
What are your thoughts on these prequel novellas? Do you love them? Or do they make you doubt your love of the series?
At the same time I've been battling disappointment, I must confess there are some absolutely wonderful series enders and prequel novellas out there.I loved reading The Orphan Queen. The book was one of my favorites of this year. When I heard about the four prequel novellas coming out, my mind jumped to the lyrics from "I Know Things Now" from Into The Woods:
"Once his teeth were bared,
Though, I really got scared-
Well, excited and scared-"
But they (at least the ones that are out to date) are wonderful. (The Hidden Prince) They have the same characters I know and love in the same world I am captivated by. I feel like I could have easily hit rewind on their lives and just randomly started playing here. Everything about these novellas fits into the already established world and it's not hard to imagine these characters growing into the ones I will later fall in love with.
So my fellow readers, I have to ask: Am I alone in this? Am I the only on to avoid reading how a series will end because of being burned too many times? Have you ever avoided buying a novella because of the fear you will have just wasted your time and money on it?