Saturday, 16 June 2018

Seven series to start this summer!

Series were something I fell out of love with for a little while. When I was younger I adored series! I loved spending a long time with the same set of characters, watching them grow and change and waiting to see if all of the characters I loved would still be there when the adventure eventually came to an end. I don't think I'm being melodramatic when I say my teen years were defined by the release of the next Harry Potter book and film; the books I adored, but the films went from fun Christmas treats at the cinema to, from the fourth film onwards, the summer blockbusters my friends and I looked forward to when school came to an end for the year.

Then, thanks to the Twilight franchise, publishers started to take YA publishing seriously and YA series became the new thing. Unfortunately, while I think YA publishing has done far, far more good than bad, it's actually YA I have to thank for my falling out of love with series. When YA first started out there were trends (there still are, but I don't think they have quite as much of an impact on the kind of stories that get published as they used to) from vampires to dystopian fiction that turned every YA trilogy into exactly the same story. There were the same tropes, the same love interests, the same basic story arc to the point where I could guess what was going to happen in a sequel before it even came out, and it turned series into something I loved to immerse myself in to something I was bored of.

This wasn't entirely a bad thing. Over the past few years I've developed such a love and appreciation for well-told standalone novels and, nine times out of ten, I'd much rather read a standalone to a series now. This year, though, thanks to the fantastic Six of Crows duology, I've rediscovered my love for a truly good series.

It's something of a running joke with me that my entire reading life is defined by series I either haven't started or haven't finished, but that's something I'd like to get better at, so today I thought I'd talk about seven series I'd like to start this summer! Some are long, some are short, some are new, some are old, and they're all books I'm excited to read.

This is one I've already mentioned this month and one I'm hoping to get to very soon! The first half of a duology, The Abyss Surrounds Us features pirates and sea monsters and a sapphic romance which I am so here for. Frankly I'm surprised we don't have more LGBT+ pirate stories, particularly stories featuring women, considering Mary Read and Anne Bonny were rumoured to be lovers.

I keep seeing Children of Blood and Bone everywhere - not that I'm surprised; that cover is gorgeous - and friends of mine who've read it have nothing but brilliant things to say about it. I've mentioned several times this year that I've rediscovered my love for high fantasy and I'm keen to read more African and Asian-inspired high fantasy. Not only is this fantasy world African-inspired, but it also includes one of my favourite fantasy tropes: magic banned by those in power. I can't wait for this one.

I had no real intention of getting this one when it came out; I've tried reading Kate Mosse's Labyrinth before and ended up DNFing it because it was so long and nothing happened for what felt like an eternity. The Burning Chambers is another beast, but it's historical fiction set during one of my favourite periods of history - the 1500s - featuring the religious turmoil at this time that I have always found fascinating. More than anything this story sounds like an adventure and I'm hoping to get lost in it this summer.

Robin Hobb has been on my TBR for far too long, so it's about time I read Assassin's Apprentice. I've heard so many wonderful things about this series and this world and, if I fall in love with it like I'm hoping to, there are so many more books for me to enjoy!

Fun fact: Set a story in a nunnery and I'm 100000000% more likely to read it. Turn the nuns who inhabit (get it?) that nunnery into assassins and I am THERE. Still haven't started this series, though. Oops. I actually tried reading Red Sister when it first came out after receiving a copy through NetGalley but I couldn't get into it despite seeing so many rave reviews, so I decided to put it down and I recently bought myself my own copy to give it another try.

I'm going to be completely honest and say I had no desire to read this until very recently. I remember it coming out and not paying much attention to it, but I recently received a bookmark promoting the sequel in a FairyLoot box and decided to look into Flame in the Mist again and realised that, actually, it sounds like something I'd really enjoy. I'm trying to read more books set in Asia, I feel like it's a continent that's been neglected in my reading, and another of my favourite tropes is girls posing as boys so I am ready to dive into this one.

Seanan McGuire is one of my faves - I'm still not over Feed and never will be, so thanks for that Seanan - and I've been meaning to read her October Daye series for years. Urban fantasy isn't something I read often but, when I do, I devour it in humungous gulps until I'm stuffed on it. I'm also not a big fan of faerie books, not sure why, but I'm looking forward to seeing McGuire's take on the fae in Rosemary and Rue and, if I enjoy it, devouring the rest of the enormous series. I know Lisa @ Bookshelf Fantasies loves this series so I'm hoping I will, too.

Do you read a lot of series, or are you more of a standalone reader? What are some of your favourite series? And are there any series you're planning to start or finish this summer?


  1. I like series, but I start so many of them that I forget about them. I do think YA went overboard with the series, and it bugs me when I think a series will only be 2 or 3 books, and then it gets popular and the author decides to extend it. It ends up having too much filler. I know I'm going to start a couple series this year, but I honestly don't know if I will continue with them, even if I like the first book.

    1. I feel you! Quite often I read the first book in a series and, to be honest, I think it's fine as it is. Thanks for stopping by!

  2. I'm very good at starting to read a new series, but not so good at remembering to continue with them! I have quite a few on the go and should really make an effort to finish them. I would definitely recommend reading Robin Hobb - Assassin's Apprentice is a wonderful book.

    1. You're not alone there! I have started and not completed SO MANY series. I'm glad to hear you enjoyed Robin Hobb - I'm looking forward to hopefully crossing Assassin's Apprentice off my TBR soon!

  3. I read lots of series. I know what you mean about them getting samey. There was definitely a time when they all followed the same format and it got boring. I've just started Children of Blood and Bone and Carve the Mark and I'm pretty invested in Laini Taylor's Strange the Dreamer series. I do like a good standalone though. Sometimes I pick up a book thinking it will be a standalone but then I later realise it's part of a series.

    1. I'm really looking forward to Children of Blood and Bone, I've heard so many great things so far! I must admit that thinking a book is a standalone and then discovering it isn't is one of my biggest pet peeves - especially when I feel like the book doesn't need any sequels. Thanks for stopping by!