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Topic: Is it possible? Am I romanced out?

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Subject: Is it possible? Am I romanced out?
Date Posted: 5/22/2009 10:21 PM ET
Member Since: 12/21/2007
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Last Edited on: 1/16/10 7:45 AM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 5/23/2009 12:01 AM ET
Member Since: 8/9/2007
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My suggestion - get away from the @#&! series books!  They're killing me too:P  I honestly believe that series after series will burn you out faster than anything, and while there are some that I just have to finish, from now on I'm spacing them out between every stand alone novel I can get my hands on.

Date Posted: 5/23/2009 6:07 AM ET
Member Since: 7/30/2007
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I mix it up, one historical, one contemporary.

Date Posted: 5/23/2009 8:56 AM ET
Member Since: 8/25/2007
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ITA with Kim.  I find that I burn-out very quickly after reading several books by the same author, though I have to fight myself not to read book-after-book in such series. 

Date Posted: 5/23/2009 9:03 AM ET
Member Since: 10/19/2007
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I feel burned out on romance as well.  I think the series thing really put an end to my quest for the perfect book.  I like to start over with fresh new people and stories.  Have you tried westerns?  That's always my favorite time period.  Maybe you should start with something brand new -- and then go back to regency.  Try Maggie Osborne -- The Best Man or Brides of Prairie Gold or Bride of Willow Creek.

Date Posted: 5/23/2009 9:44 AM ET
Member Since: 1/21/2009
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When I get burned out or have exhausted an author's books, I read something totally different.  I read "Home" by Julie Andrews, The  book whose name escapes me by Robert Wagner, whatever Steve Berry writes or even some silly almanac type book.  It kind of resets my mind.

Hope that helps


Betsy in Michigan

Date Posted: 5/23/2009 10:47 AM ET
Member Since: 10/6/2007
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ugh, Stephanie Laurens. ugh.

Not sure what to tell you, but I do not like Laurens' style of writing. I opened this thread because I sometimes worry if I'll burn out (not happening right now) so I wondered what your dilemma was and what others had to say about it. When I read that you were trying to get into the Bastion club I stopped for a moment because I did try to like Stephanie Laurens, and just cannot. I'm sure she's a very nice person but her style of writing made my eyes roll back in my head.

Sorry to hear you're having trouble. I'm still in the honeymoon stage with romance (a little more than 2 years of reading romance) - doing re-reads, finding new authors, listening to audiobooks of books I've already read - no desire at all to stop, no frustration in not getting out of it what I like. I mix up my reading by doing challenges that sort of force me to look at different eras, different authors, different plotlines. I'm still in the stage of deciding what I like! So far, the only thing I can pinpoint is writing style - if it's good, I like the story regardless of era, plot conceits, anything.

Good luck to you! I'm going to keep coming back to this thread to see how others deal with burnout.

Date Posted: 5/23/2009 11:02 AM ET
Member Since: 8/23/2007
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I get burned out on romances after awhile as well.  Try reading a mystery, cozy, non-romance historical or something.  Sometimes I don't read for a few days and just watch movies that I've been meaning to see but never got around to it-they'll usualy put me in the mood for a specific type of book.

I don't know if I've read any of those books you mentioned. If you're looking for a romance that's a little more serious and maybe be requires a hanky to read try Catherine Anderson.  She does write some series but they are usually jsut 2 or 3 somewhat connected books.  You don't need a family tree or to read them in order to follow them. But most of hers have a hero/heroine who has suffered a major tragedy, abuse or has a physical disability.  Her couples aren't the traditional-physically perfect best looking people that ever lived and can do no wrong couples.  Some of her books have a comedic elemant as well as the tragedy. 

Date Posted: 5/23/2009 11:39 AM ET
Member Since: 2/28/2008
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I don't like series either. Well, I take that back. I LOVE series...in urban fantasy, for example, where one character is followed through all the books.

What I don't like is series where everyone in the family and some long-lost cousins, and even the family dog, has a book. I get so tired of the hokey set-ups for the characters in the next book, or the hokey reunion scenes with characters from previous books who like to get together and discuss things they already know about eachother for no good reason (and not advancing the plot at all) just so the reader gets every couple's backstory. Or the cheesy family matriarch or patriarch who plays matchmaker for everyone - that has to be one of the most annoying plot devices.

Mary mentioned Catherine Anderson, she's probably one of the only authors who's series I will follow. But I usually put 4-5 books inbetween them when I'm reading hers. There's no way I could just read any of these romance series right down the row.

Last Edited on: 5/23/09 11:40 AM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 5/23/2009 12:16 PM ET
Member Since: 2/24/2006
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Mix it up.  Read a series, a paranormal, a harlequin, a contemporary and then go back.  Or something along those lines.  You will get burned out!!

Date Posted: 5/23/2009 1:06 PM ET
Member Since: 8/9/2007
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I honestly thought series' were cool about 5 years ago.  But it really doesn't take a bad one - or even one that is about 50/50 of some good & some bad.  All they have to be is just lukewarm & repetitious enough to make you feel like you've been stuck reading the same book for six months.  And then you do a half dozen of them, and the next thing you know, you're burned out on a sub-genre, or God forbid, romance altogether.  Mary Balogh can be great, but try reading her series books for a few straight months and you'll never want to look at another regency again:P  And Stephanie Laurens... the woman should be in prison for the burnout she has caused.  There are actually a couple of decent Bastion Club books, but if you've read one, seriously, you've read 'em all.  I think if you want to check out one of her series, or Quinn's Bridgerton books, one of Jo Beverley's series, and yada-yada-yada, find some reviews, pick the best 2 or 3, and leave well enough alone:P  This is experience talking here - lol.  There are a few exceptions.  Anyone who knows that less is more and keeps them down to 3 or 4 books about characters you met in book 1.  Anyone who spins it out beyond that, I'd avoid like the plague:P

Last Edited on: 5/23/09 1:07 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 5/23/2009 1:20 PM ET
Member Since: 8/30/2008
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I know what you're going through - burn out is awful; as is its evil twin, the reading dry spell.  Keep us posted on how you work your way through this. I went through a dry spell some years back and didn't read anything for over 3 months, and it took another few months to go from reading 1 book a month at first to reaching the usual average for me.

I agree with the suggestions to mix it up - try finding a very short series (or a NEW series with few books); or swap off with a contemporary or a category romance - lots of hidden gem authors in the cats. I recently got back into Futuristics - not that I'm way hooked again but I was pleasantly surprised at how much I enjoyed them. Try some new-to-you authors, great way to find new favorite authors.

Don't force it, though; grinding through a book because you don't want it to get the best of you can burn you out more. You may have to start a few different books before your taste buds are tingling again. Good luck - and remember: it WILL pass.

One book I read where the hero is really struggling, in fact his whole family is, is Kristin Hannah's ONCE IN EVERY LIFE. It's set post Civil War in the Pacific Northwest and has a touch of paranormal, a modern day woman is hit by a bus and while she's in 'limbo' has a chance to go back to life but as another woman, but her challenges are ahead of her with this woman's husband Jack and the children. It was the very first Hannah I'd ever read and I was hooked. http://www.paperbackswap.com/book/details/9780449148389-Once+in+Every+Life


Last Edited on: 5/23/09 1:24 PM ET - Total times edited: 2
Date Posted: 5/23/2009 1:20 PM ET
Member Since: 5/19/2006
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Other than the Outlander series, I have not read any others.  But, I am just starting the Charlaine Harris series with Sookie Stackhouse and so far, so good.

Date Posted: 5/23/2009 4:14 PM ET
Member Since: 3/5/2008
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I completely agree on mixing up your genres to avoid burn out.  I cannot read more than two books in a series at one time.   One of the advantages of PBS is going to the Historical fiction  or paranormal forums  or even Hidden Gems and getting great recommendations for books.  I have read some terrific books and completely change of pace. A good example of this is Snow Flower and the Secret Fan by Lisa See.  I would have never found or probably read this book and I do love a good change of pace book. 

Date Posted: 5/23/2009 4:25 PM ET
Member Since: 7/15/2008
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I agree with everyone else, you must space out the series. When it comes to book series, no matter if it's a romance series, mystery series, or fantasy series, I really, really space them out with 5 or 6 books separating each book.  I try to get to the point where I don't remember everything (but also haven't forgot important plot points, if there are any) about the previous book.  I do this because I don't want to burn out.  It's not fun to burn out of a series.  I have done it so thoroughly that I couldn't care less about the characters a couple of times (Anita Blake especially - although my burn out coincided with the series' turn into the crappy porn world - coincidence?)

I burned myself out on paranormals awhile back and now when I read them I generally read one and then 2 or 3 other kinds of books to prevent getting royally sick of them again.  When I start getting tired of the romance (I can tell, cuz I start rolling my eyes every time the couple starts getting remotely lovey-dovey) I read a few regular fiction.  Cozy mysteries or thrillers usually.  It only takes one or two to get me back in the mood for the lovey-dovey stuff.  :-) 

I agree with Kim that a good author would stop at 3 or 4 books in one particular series (my sole exception is not a romance series - the Agent Pendergast books by Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child).  I don't mind if we visit previous characters from other series as long as there is a point to their presence and the author avoids retelling that person/couple's story in the book I'm reading.

Edited for spelling

Last Edited on: 5/23/09 4:25 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 5/23/2009 4:34 PM ET
Member Since: 8/23/2007
Posts: 26,510
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I think that most series are best left at 3-4 as far as romance series go.  For mysteries or books like the Sookie Stackhouse books-I don't mind if they go on for a long time because the life of the main character progresses and the plot (for mysteries changes). They change love interests, jobs, the people in their life sphere. But when you get to the point like the Cynster's where suddenly every 2nd cousin twice removed gets their own book and seems like just an excuse to update the lives of the original characters-that gets too much. 

There are several authors I haven't even tried because it seems like every book is connected. It's just too much. I find this is very common in paranormals as well and it's one of the reasons I lean away from them.

Date Posted: 5/23/2009 4:45 PM ET
Member Since: 7/15/2008
Posts: 2,164
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Mary reminded me.  I haven't yet gotten sick of the Sookie Stackhouse books either.  Hopefully I either never will or the series will end before I do.  Know what I mean?

Date Posted: 5/23/2009 8:17 PM ET
Member Since: 5/3/2006
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I agree with everyone else, go for one of the awesome stand alones that have been published in the last few years. I tend to save the Regency series books for when I feel like something fairly bland and predictable. (Oddly enough, this does happen!)

Date Posted: 5/24/2009 11:04 AM ET
Member Since: 8/23/2007
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I get that urge sometimes too Willa.  Those usually fit the bill for me when I can't decide what else to read because I know if I get sidetracked from it for a while I can pick it up again later without having to reread it to follow the story.

Subject: Try different types of romantic fiction
Date Posted: 5/27/2009 9:58 PM ET
Member Since: 5/20/2008
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I go from historical to contemporary to mystery to fantasy. Change it up and bit. And get away from the series. Since romance books are usually formal driven...reading a series all at once can burn you out and make you feel as if you've wasted your time.

Date Posted: 5/28/2009 11:26 AM ET
Member Since: 8/23/2007
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I also find that having a couple different books going at once helps sometimes.  I try to keep it to 2 but sometimes I have 3 going.  Usually a romance and a mystery or 2 very different types of romances.   Of course sometimes I pick up a book and can't put it down.