Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Top Ten Tuesday: Finished Series I Haven't Finished

That's kind of a confusing title.  This week's theme, courtesy as always of the lovely Broke and the Bookish, is finished series that I have yet to finish.  I'm assuming this means series that I have at least started.  I'll divide them into different groups based on how committed I am to finishing (or not finishing!) the series.  I have to say though, that my usual response to enjoying the first book in a finished series is to binge read the rest of them, so there's not much languishing on on my "going to finish" list.


The Wolves of Mercy Falls
Last Survivors
Maximum Ride
Percy Jackson and the Olympians

The only two books on this list that I tried to read more of are Gone and Life As We Knew It.  They have something in common, in that an unusual event in the present day throws everything out of whack, and the world must learn to survive under totally new circumstances.  Gone was fun, but the sequels started to make me squeamish, and I stopped reading when they started eating worms.  Life As We Knew It was even more compelling of a read, and I remember looking up from the book, worrying about how much canned goods I had in my pantry and how much fuel our camp stoves had.  But when I started the sequel, it felt like too much of the same thing.  I didn't really want to know how the same events played out in NYC; I just wanted to know what was happening with the previous book's family.

The other three just bored me.  HOWEVER, I have an awesome story about one of them.  The other day, one of my brand-new 7th grade students was trying to answer the question, "What is a series you like?"  She told me she had one in mind, but couldn't remember what it was called.  I said, "Tell me a little about it."

"Well, there are sisters?  With wings?  And they have brothers too?  Their dad is a scientist, but he's dead?  Or they think so?" she said/asked with her very best 7th grade girl voice and clarity.

"Maximum Ride?"  I asked.

"YES!"  she exclaimed.

Her friend looked at me, wide-eyed.  "That was SO COOL," she said gravely.  "Like, you are a reading super-hero."

That alone made the time I spent reading Patterson's formulaic, money-grubbing book well worth it.


Throne of Glass
The Grisha
The Raven Cycle

I keep hearing great things about Sarah Maas on various blogs.  I'd checked out Throne of Glass once from the library, but couldn't get into it.  I am trying again, although apparently I read further than I'd remembered, because I keep having an annoying deja vu sensation.  I'm neither loving nor hating it, which apparently puts me in a weird minority.  I'll decide at the end if I want more or not.

I also heard wildly disparate things about the Grisha series, but was persuaded to read Shadow and Bone because I love the cover, and because I have some background knowledge about Russian culture and history.  I know some others have objected to it because the Russian elements are not well researched, but I could wrap my head around it being a fictional place only loosely inspired by Russia (although kvass being alcoholic is weird every time).   I enjoyed the book, but again, didn't adore it, so I'm unsure if I'll follow through on the others.

Maggie Stiefvater confuses me.  Scorpio Races is one of the best books I've read this year.  Shiver was boring.  The Raven Boys had a slow, dreamy pace that I couldn't really get into, but didn't completely hate either.  My love for Scorpio Races meant that I'd bought all three Raven Boys books when a friend gave me a gift card to Powells for my birthday, so I kind of feel obligated to read the other two.  But I don't feel passionate about it.


Song of Fire and Ice
Daughter of Smoke and Bone

If I felt like a reading super hero in class, then George R. R. Martin makes me feel like a mere mortal.  That is, I simply cannot sit down and read one of his books over the weekend, much less in one afternoon.  I read the first two books in Song of Fire and Ice this summer, and have been reading the third one for weeks now.  I come back to it between other books.  At this point, the characters and their stories are well established enough that I don't get confused by the slowness of my pace, but it does make it harder to keep caring.  This is the same reason why I don't usually listen to audio books.  Still, I want to see what happens, and it wouldn't be satisfying to just ask someone who's read or watched it already.

Wait, is this series even done?  Or does it extend infinitely?  Either way, I'm far enough behind that I still say it counts.

Daughter of Smoke and Bone...this is another weird one for me.  I liked the first book, and loved the second book.  I was all excited to read the third one, but when I got it at the library, I just couldn't get into it.  Part of the problem was that there were several months between when I read the second book and when I got the third book.  Turns out that momentum is very important for my reading enthusiasm these days.  Still, Laini Taylor is completely amazing, and I think I will go back to this book in awhile and see if I can rekindle the fire.

As you can see, if I didn't finish a series, there's a reason, and the reason is that I just didn't like the first book(s) that much.  Otherwise, I'm a compulsive binge reader.  I had to struggle to come up with ten series for this category, but if the title were "series I've completed" I could come up with hundreds of ideas.

 How about you?  Are there series you gave up on?  Or series you are plugging away at?


  1. I have to agree with you on Maximum Ride—definitely not worth the time and effort to finish that series. I read the last book which I can't remember the title of—it actually turned me off James Patterson for life, it was terrible.

    My list

  2. I agree with you about Maximum Ride, I don't even know why I bothered to continue after the disappointment the first book was (I read three of the books). I enjoyed Percy Jackson a lot but personally think that there are many better written books out there that would deserve the hype more. Anyways, I long realized there's no point in saying overhyped books don't deserve the attention they get. :) I gave up on Gone, even though DNFing is not something I do - so this tells you everything you have to know about my feelings toward the book.

    Raven Cycle deserves to be continued, believe me. As the series progresses the books get better and better so I'm sure you'll get into them more later on. :) The third book of DoS&B was my favorite, so again I'm quite sure you'll enjoy it as well - especially given your love for the second novel, which I did not like all that much.
    Anyways, sorry for the long comment and great list!

    My TTT

    1. Definitely will work on both Raven Cycle and Daughter of Smoke and Bone.

  3. That is such a funny story about your students. A reading superhero. Ha. That is too bad you didn't want to finish the Gone series. I loved that series so, so, so much!! I can see why you might get squeamish from it though. :)

  4. A Song of Ice and Fire is just so amazing! I understand you're trouble with getting into Throne of Glass, it took me an annoying amount of time as well. But, for me at least, it was so worth it! I would recommend A Court of Thorns and Roses by Maas as the first book to read though, because it's so easy to get into (in my opinion, that is)
    I'm sad that you won't finish Percy Jackson and the Olympians or Life as We Knew It. I love both of these series, but I can see how they're not for everyone. But keep in mind that in the third book in the LIfe as we knew it series, we get to see the family from the first book again! I don't know if you already know this, but thought I should at least mention it.
    I hope you're having an amazing day!

  5. I personally love the Percy Jackson series but I can get why they may not be for everyone. The first Throne of Glass book is difficult to get into, but if you manage to make it through that, the second and third books are both awesome (can't say anything about the fourth as it's a new release which I have not read yet). The Raven Cycle confused me at first too, but I decided to keep reading and really enjoyed the second and third books in the series. Daughter of Smoke and Bone is a series that is on my TBR.
    My TTT: https://jjbookblog.wordpress.com/2015/09/08/top-ten-tuesday-21/

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  7. Thank you for the post.

    I was excited to read The Queen of Tearling but very disappointed and won't read the sequels. The heroine uses violence in an unnecessary way and the other characters are too sick, too evil for my taste. Also, there are too many contradictions and coincidences.

  8. The story about your students is too adorable! Oh, as for Throne of Glass, I felt the same exact way! I didn't love it or hate it at first, I just... felt nothing. BUT Crown of Midnight is one of my favorite books I read this year! So it may be worth trying? Gone scares me. The first book bored me. So I don't know how I feel about 5 more.. I feel the same as you do about Life as We Knew It- I was all excited about a second book but then I found out it is about some random dude? Boo. I did really enjoy the Grisha series though. And so far, I am liking The Raven Boys :)

    Good luck with the ones you decide to continue :)
    Shannon @ It Starts At Midnight


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