But I also enjoy reading books that stand-alone (singles) and that contain stories that are finished when I read the last sentence. Stories that are finished in one book have a refreshing finality and simplicity that I crave from time to time. Not every story needs to be told over several books, some stories are best told in one book. And let's be honest, keeping track of all the series you started can be a bit frustrating. When reading becomes more about thinking what happened in the last book (s) of the series or what will happen in the next one, then some of the joy and entertainment get's lost.
To enjoy and appreciate the great qualities that make series so special, the continuity, the complexity, the ongoing story line, I need to mix books that belong to a series with singles. But lately that's getting harder and harder because everyone seems to write and publish series. Another thing I love about stand-alone books is that I don't have to wonder where in the series the book I just discovered stands, I can just buy and read it without needing to read other books to understand the story.
For me it's time to praise singles and the authors who write them. One of the highlights of my reading year is for example the single by Nora Roberts that's published every spring or summer ( the single in 2011 was Chasing Fire). You get one book and when you finish the last sentence of it, the story is told and you can be happy and satisfied without wondering how the story will go on and how long you will have to wait for it. I also like that Stephanie Perkins' books are loosley tied together but that they still stand-alone. The same can be said for the books by Kerry Reichs. Other authors who write stand-alone books that I read and enjoyed in 2011 are Hazel Osmond, Rosemary Clement-Moore and Sarra Manning (will add more later).
My sis hates starting a series as long as not all books in it are published, I'm not that extreme but I can understand her more and more. When a book in a series ends with a huge cliffhanger I tend to go crazy with thinking about the possibilities of what could happen in the next book. And going crazy can be a bit exhausting so I don't want to do it too often ;)
It's kind of sad that when I read about a new book that sounds exciting and then read the words "part of a series" my excitement declines rapidly. I want to be excited about reading a new series but to do that I need more stand-alone books. Especially in the YA section series seems to be the trend right now and it's starting to annoy me.
Publishers and authors should keep in mind that there are readers who are tired of starting a new series. Readers like me who love reading a good series but also love stand-alone books and want more of them.
What do you think about the series trend? Are there too many series for your taste or can't you get enough of them? Which stand-alone books you read in 2011 can you recommend (all genres)?