Sometimes I feel like all I talk about are series.
It’s true that series deserve recognition. The ability to keep up interest from the community of readers for years on end, to continuously develop the characters and plot- they’re awesome.
But then I think about standalone books.
And I realize that sometimes I’m unfair to them. I don’t mention them as much, or give them as much credit as I should. Today I’m going to be exploring the topic, do standalone books get enough credit?
At first, I definitely think yes. I’m positive that I write many blog posts about standalone books. I’m absolutely certain that I never let them get overshadowed. But is that really true?
Taking a look at some of my favorite books, I can see that they’re mostly part of a series. Harry Potter. Anne of Green Gables. The Mysterious Benedict Society. Percy Jackson. The Mother-Daughter Book Club, Land of Stories, etc. etc. etc.
I’m sensing a slight trend in the above photos. Just a little one. 😉
But WHY? Why the love for series? Why don’t I give standalone books they credit they really deserve? And how can I change that?
Why Do I Love Series So Much?
I think it’s pretty obvious why we love series. We get invested with the characters, the setting, etc. etc. etc. ETC. (Apparently I love etceteras today.) When the books are prolonged, we get invested.
We’re exposed to so much more of the world the author has created. We feel as if we belong there. We know it like the back of our hands.
The characters become our friends as we watch them grow up. We sometimes experience their childhood, teenage years, and even early adulthood. We are there for them through everything– relationships, happy points, low points.
Honestly, I don’t really know what my life would be like if I hadn’t grown up going to Hogwarts and Camp Half-Blood and countless adventures with Anne Shirley. Probably a lot less exciting- and I’m glad I don’t have to find out.
I love series and I always will.
Why Don’t I Talk As Much About Standalones?
Now for the real topic of this post- reasons that I don’t rant as much over standalones. Reasons why they sometimes get pushed to the side on my blog.
I don’t read enough standalone books. Often, when I’m looking for a comforting reread, I turn to series. Especially ones I’ve read billions of times, like Harry Potter or Main Street.
I also have had many of my favorite standalones get turned into series over the years. As the days go by, authors write more and more sequels. At this time last year, I would have considered Absolutely Truly, by Heather Vogel Frederick, a favorite non-series. But earlier this year its sequel, Yours Truly, came out (my review here).
Honestly, it may be that I get caught up in reading the ‘popular’ books. Nothing against the “popular” books- they’re usually amazing. But has anyone else noticed that they’re almost all series?
I don’t branch out enough. To add onto the above reason, I don’t often go to the library and roam the shelves with no book in mind. These days I haven’t been discovering as many books as I used to. (And this makes me really sad.)
I don’t always want to leave MG fiction. Lately I’ve been reading more and more YA. And guess what? I love it. But it has still been hard for me to move on from MG fiction- which is where many of my favorite series are.
Sometimes I want more. I always want more. More stories, more of the characters, more of the setting. Often I will pick a series over a standalone because I know it will offer me more.
Finally, A Few of My Favorite Standalones
At the end of the day, I do enjoy many standalones. I could actually rattle off a long list of them that I’d recommend to everyone! I’ll be sharing a few below. 🙂
**(All pictures are linked to their Goodreads summary if you are interested in reading any of them!)
I hope you enjoyed this post! 🙂 It was interesting to write, and I hope we can continue the discussion in the comments.
What do you think? Do you prefer standalones or series, and why? Have you read any of the books I recommended? See you in the comments!
P.S. It’s the first post of February! How has your month been going so far?