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Saturdays in Books

Reviews of speculative fiction, YA, middle grade, and graphic novels, along with stray thoughts, links, and pictures.

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The SFWA European Hall of Fame: Sixteen Contemporary Masterpieces of Science Fiction from the Continent
Kathryn Morrow, James K. Morrow

Serial Quitter

This post is meaningless fluff. You have been warned.


Today, Carrie Vaughn announced that the upcoming Kitty Norville book is the last one in the series. Having been to a couple of her signings, this isn't a big surprise. The bigger surprise to me was that I've actually kept up with a series as long running as this one. 14 books, if I include the collection of short stories. Soon to be 15. And I am so going to read it as soon as it's out.


This is a rare thing for me. I manage to finish trilogies on occasion, but I'm pretty sure I quit far more series than I keep up with. And finish? Ha.


I started tracking my reading in way back in 2008. I have some older stuff in there, but I would have to trust my memory, which seems like a bad idea. Just for the fun of it, I ran through the last 7 years worth of books I've read (or tried to read), listed each series, and recorded a current state. The short version:


Finished: 11

Current: 11

Behind: 19

Abandoned: 32




Finished - I have read all the books, and to the best of my knowledge, no additional books are expected in the series.

Current - I have read all the books currently out.

Behind - there are books out that I intend to read.

Abandoned - there are books out or planned that I don't intent to read.




I've long been aware that happy endings aren't a requirement for me, but apparently endings aren't even a requirement for my reading.


I am a serious series slacker. Even when I don't just walk away, I'm not keeping up.


Of the 32 abandoned, 23 I stopped at the first book. That means I have abandoned more series at the first book than I have kept up with. But only just barely. Of the 11 finished, 6 (more than half) are trilogies and duologies so, not even serious commitments. 


I have friends who always finish the book they're reading, and always read all the books in a series after the first one. I have friends who won't even start a series until all the books are out (good news, you're about to get to read all the Kitty Norville books). But that just isn't me. I am capricious and callous. I don't read fast enough to let stuff I don't love keep going, and I don't love a lot, it seems.


All kinds of arguably good books are in that group of abandoned series. I quit books for all kinds of inane reasons. Protagonist seems tstl. I start an epic fantasy series, then remember I don't actually like the genre.  Heck, I once stopped reading a series about 90 pages into the first book because all the sentences had too many words in them. No, really. Too many words. In every sentence.


The furthest I've gotten before quitting? 5 books. Yeah, 5 books into Kara Gillian's story, I just stopped reading. Those are good books. Each one better than the last in terms of writing, but no longer of interest to me. Book 4, Rowland pulls off this narrative trick that is so well done, I'll totally try any new thing she writes ever, just not not more of this series. 


In my TBR pile, Ancillary Sword is pretty high up there. As is the third Kat, Incorrigible. The Vorkosigan series? I'm pretty far behind on that one, but I'm sure I'll get to it! 


Along with the other 390 books on my to-read list. Ha.