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Topic: Series that fall off after the first (or second or third...) book

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Subject: Series that fall off after the first (or second or third...) book
Date Posted: 7/9/2010 10:30 AM ET
Member Since: 12/29/2008
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We've all been there - picked up a first book in a series that we loved and couldn't put down, bought the rest of the series because we can't wait to read it...and have been bitterly disappointed, so much so that you quit reading the series, or keep asking yourself "why am I slogging through this?" So here's my list to start us off, some of which are culled from Michelle's thread on series that are slow to start: Books that have great reviews but you just can't get into the 1st book!   Please, no spoilers!  Some people love what other people don't (thank goodness there are so many books to choose from) so please don't ruin a beloved series for others who want to and do enjoy it!

LKH/Anita Blake: I could not put the first 7 or 8 books down.  I buy every new release, and every time I'm a little depressed that I did.

Cast/House of Night: I read the first book in this series at the same time as the first book in the Vampire Academy series, and I loved them both.  Now, I still love VA - but I'm more and more annoyed every time I read a House of Night book.  I have the most recent release under my bed, gathering dust - I just can't motivate to pick it up.

Cassandra Palmer: I slogged through the first two, because people love this series (and I love other Karen Chance) and after the first one people assured me the series would pick up.  So far for me, not.  I'm going to try book 3.

Karen Moning/Fever series: I loved the first book.  I just read Dreamfever and I'm pissed.  I know, I know, controversial, because people love this series.

MJD/Undead series: I thought the first book was hysterical.  I thought the second book was pretty funny.  I'm a slow learner, but I don't think I'm ever going to read book 7.

Hmm, a shorter list than I thought.  Anyone else?

Date Posted: 7/9/2010 10:47 AM ET
Member Since: 3/24/2010
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Christine, I've heard that over and over about the Anita Blake series.  I've only read the first one (Guilty Pleasures), which I thoroughly enjoyed, and the 2nd one is on its way to me now.  I've heard somewhere around Obsidian Butterfly (I think) it changes to porn-ISH???

I will eventually try the Cassie Palmer, but I've also heard from others that it can be slow or boring.  One question--have you read the Dhampir books?  If so, are they supposed to be read after the Cassie Palmer series, or does it matter?  (I'm a stickler for reading series in order, whether it's books within a series, or various complementary series by one author)

I can't think of any series that I've encountered a problem with thus far.  I think all the ones that I've read I've loved all the way through!

Ooh, but I just thought of a series where I didn't really enjoy the first book but then I enjoyed the rest of it.  Over to the other thread....

Date Posted: 7/9/2010 11:37 AM ET
Member Since: 1/13/2010
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I can think of three right off:

Argeneau series by Lynsay Sands. I did enjoy them at first then after a few it felt like same old, same old.

Carpathians by Christine Feehan. Man there are so many of them and at first I thought "Cool! Long series and good books".  Several books in it seemed like I was reading the same story over and over and over again, just with different names. I have been tempted to try the ghostwalker series or the drake sisters (think thats what their called!)  but just havent got the nerve to try yet.

Lords of the Underworld by Gena Showalter. I did enjoy the first 2 or 3 I guess, but not near as much as I enjoy others out there. I guess I just didnt connect with the books or something. There are a couple of the characters that I would like to go back in the future and read when their books come out, but I didnt even bother to buy the last one... or put it on my PBS wishlist!

 

Im sure I will be able to think of others eventually.....

Date Posted: 7/9/2010 12:17 PM ET
Member Since: 6/13/2007
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I don't agree about Fever or Cassie Palmer...but the rest I do.  I'd add Sookie Stackhouse to the list too. 

Date Posted: 7/9/2010 12:18 PM ET
Member Since: 8/31/2005
Posts: 3,730
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LKH/Anita Blake:  Cast/House of Night:

these are two that I always think of when someone mentions books going bad. LKH...ugh worst ever lol The house of night seemed to be following LKH in that the chick was collecting a harem of men and I was so over that. She was super annoying and full of herself too.

Lynsay Sands and C. Feehan are ones I gave up on too. Sands books were just boring to me, all seemed the same. Feehan, her writing made me want to burn her books lol which is weird cause I read her Game series...

I love all of Gena Showalters books, especially the LOTU lol

I have to think of what to add to the list, for awhile I would hold on to a series no matter what but thankfully I gave that up. I was actually thinking of purging my tbr today

I am thinking of passing on the rest of Michelle Rowens vamp books for starters.

dp
Date Posted: 7/9/2010 1:13 PM ET
Member Since: 1/17/2010
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Anita Blake for sure.  Normally I don't mind lots of sex scenes, but when 1) the sex is used in lieu of a plot, 2) characters are stuck in the same relationship loops (Anita/Richard, anyone?) and 3) the last couple of Big Bad storylines that I read were completely anticlimactic - geesh.  I've lost interest in her Merry Gentry books as well, though at least that series never pretended to be anything other than a sex fest and Merry doesn't come with Anita's sexual baggage.

I'll agree with the Southern Vampire Mysteries - I raced through 1-8 but only skimmed Dead and Gone (came out right during finals and wasn't compelled to go back) and haven't touched Dead in the Family.  The storylines have become too sprawling.  Too many new characters, too many simultaneous threads going on; it needs more focus.  It hasn't crashed and burned as hard as some and I'll read them eventually, but I don't enjoy them as much as I used to.

I've only read 1/2 of the first Cassandra Palmer.  I got impatient, skimmed through to the end, and haven't gone back through it because other books in my TBR are more pressing (I really need to stop doing that, I have so many quasi-finished books).  I have books 1 & 2, so I'll at least read those.

Haven't read the last 2 House of Nights either but I agree with Ashley, I get a really bad feeling when the main character starts collecting a harem.  2 hot guys is a good bit of tension, a menage a quatre can be fun when played right, but when more than 4 guys start looking like love interests, the authors should really reevaluate if it's vital to the overall plot.  A girl's dance card only has so many slots before us readers get bored and annoyed.

Date Posted: 7/9/2010 1:53 PM ET
Member Since: 2/4/2008
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I agree, although I keep reading LKH.  I also stopped House of Night after the first 2 -- my dd still loves them. Cassie Palmer -- I like-  they aren't a buy for me, but a PBS series.  Sookie I still love.  I still read Argeneau -although they aren't a buy for me either, just if I happen to get them in a swap or whatever.  I also love the  Fever series, despite cliff hanging endings

One I thought would be great, but was my worst series ever was Jennifer Armintrout Blood Ties series.  How many times can one man die? 

 

Another one I am getting tired of is the Weather Wardens. 

Date Posted: 7/9/2010 2:21 PM ET
Member Since: 6/13/2007
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OMG...forgot about Armintrout!  Talk about a total let down....the 1st book held such promise...then, urg...   Is her new series any better??

I guess I should add I haven't read Lynsay Sands or C. Feehan.  Well I did read one book of Feehan and that was enough for me. 

Date Posted: 7/9/2010 4:44 PM ET
Member Since: 12/29/2008
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I've heard somewhere around Obsidian Butterfly (I think) it changes to porn-ISH???

There is no "ISH" about it.  I liked them through Obsidian Butterfly.  

Hard to believe that Anita Blake and Zoe Redbird have something in common, LOL....

I'm in the minority, but I love all the Sookie books.

Renee, I read the first Dorina book, and I really loved it, which is one reason I've been unable to totally give up on Cassie.  I don't think the worlds are connected, at least as far as I can tell, so I don't think you need to read one series first.

Date Posted: 7/9/2010 5:04 PM ET
Member Since: 2/4/2008
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Marie - I  hated Blood Ties so much that I don't think I will ever read another of hers. 

Feehan -- I only tried once and it was a little too-- hmmm... how to describe it -- romancy? -- for me.  I like romance, but some get too much like bodice rippers.  I like strong males but me HE MAN you woman -  not for me.

L A Banks - I could never get into hers.  The description sounds good, but I hated the writing

 

Date Posted: 7/9/2010 5:38 PM ET
Member Since: 8/31/2005
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Haven't read the last 2 House of Nights either but I agree with Ashley, I get a really bad feeling when the main character starts collecting a harem.  2 hot guys is a good bit of tension, a menage a quatre can be fun when played right, but when more than 4 guys start looking like love interests, the authors should really reevaluate if it's vital to the overall plot.  A girl's dance card only has so many slots before us readers get bored and annoyed.

Especially if it's a YA series and the main character is a teen.

another series I gave up on is Kim Harrison's hallows series....i got sick of her main character and just didn't care about her anymore.

Date Posted: 7/9/2010 5:47 PM ET
Member Since: 8/31/2005
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and I just read spoilers for the last Undead book...not sure I want to continue reading them now lol

Date Posted: 7/9/2010 6:43 PM ET
Member Since: 11/15/2008
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I'll agree about Southern Vampire as well.  I think Dead in the Family is marginally better than book 9, but I realized it's taking me days to read it.  Plus, while I'm enjoying it, I keep thinking about True Blood and how the series gets it better.  For me to think that the TV show is better is just too bizzare to handle.

Weather Warden- I liked book one and enjoyed book 2, but i haven't been eager to read the other ones I have lying around. 

I would put the Dark Hunters on this list.  I loved the beginning of the series, and I couldn't wait for them to come out.  Now, I still read them, and there are some books I'm looking forward to (Jaden), but it has lost a lot for me.

Date Posted: 7/9/2010 9:34 PM ET
Member Since: 8/16/2009
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Two come to mind for me...

1. The Weather Warden series- Okay, enough already! I don't care at this point if the world blows up. It has become so out there even for a paranormal series, that I just don't care.

2. House of Night- this series has turned into crap. I hated the last book.

I have to laugh over this..

"Karen Moning/Fever series: I loved the first book.  I just read Dreamfever and I'm pissed.  I know, I know, controversial, because people love this series"

Fever series is by far, my favorite all time series! I love, love, love it. One of my employees saw the hardcover keeper collection I have of the books on my bookshelf at work. She asked to read it. I told her the only way she could read it is if she promised me she'd read through book 2. She didn't understand why but once she finished book one, she knew. It is a frustrating book 1 but it is overall an incredible series. She just finished book 4, two days ago and now all she does is gush on how much she loves the series.

 

 

Date Posted: 7/9/2010 10:17 PM ET
Member Since: 3/24/2010
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Michelle, Is it kinda like the Mercy series as far as getting into it?

I've known about all these UF series for months, but I just started putting a few of them on my  reminder list, like the Fever series.

Date Posted: 7/10/2010 12:13 AM ET
Member Since: 7/9/2005
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I know there are MANY fans of the Black Dagger Brotherhood by J.R. Ward.  I really liked the first 4, but then they fell off into the Twilight Zone!  The story lines were just TOO out there even for a paranormal.

I have to agree about Feehan and have to add Sherrilyn Kenyon and her Dark Hunters, but I still get their books because some are really good and some are not.  Same with Feehan's Ghostwalker Series.  I still buy, but only like about half of them.

Date Posted: 7/10/2010 10:56 AM ET
Member Since: 4/22/2005
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The top of the list is the Anita Blake series. Like everyone else, I loved the first 6 or 7 and then ugh! No plot, nothing, just sex. Gave up on it. I have a few of the newer ones around I got in swaps but doubt I'll ever read them.

Couldn't stand the Mercy series. Just don't like the writing. Ditto for Karen Chance. I slogged through the first two and then just said, "Who cares?"

I'm only on book 5 of the House of Night series but am fast losing patience. Not sure how much longer I'll tackle those.

Bestsy and Sookie have their last two books setting here for quite some time. I guess I'm not as enarmoured with them as I used to be either.

After a while, if you read one Argeneau book, you read them all.

I'm still enjoying the Riley Jensen  and Zoe Martinque series. I still like the Hollow series but am getting impatient with some of the poor choices Rachel makes. Sort of going the way of Anita's choices.

I initially liked the Retriever series by Laura Gilman, but after about the 3rd book, they started to fall flat.

And finally, the Delilah Street series was one of the worst written books I ever read. I gave up halfway through.

Date Posted: 7/10/2010 11:27 AM ET
Member Since: 3/1/2010
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The Servant Series by LL Foster.  Loved the first one.  Read the other two, but wondered why I did.

Date Posted: 7/10/2010 5:03 PM ET
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Mary, good list, I agreed w/ most your list, some I haven't read any so I couldn't tell you either way.

So, here is a question, what series has held your attention throughout the series and has more than 4 books?

For me, the first ones that come to my mind are the psy-changeling, BDB books, shifter, fever series, and vampire academy. NO matter what, I love the next book. There seems to be no filler books (books designed to just prep the reader for the next book). I just came back from a swim meet, in 95 degrees, outside for 5 hours so my brain is a bit fried or I'd have a better list!

dp
Date Posted: 7/10/2010 7:00 PM ET
Member Since: 1/17/2010
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So, here is a question, what series has held your attention throughout the series and has more than 4 books?

I really like Mercy Thompson.  Actually #4 fell flat for me, but I thought Briggs did a really good job getting back on track with Silver Borne and now I'm excited to read more again.

Date Posted: 7/10/2010 7:55 PM ET
Member Since: 6/13/2007
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Mercy, Hollows, Kelley Armstrongs books and Rachel Vincent quickly come to mind at 5 or more books that I LOVE.  I just came home from a lax tourament in the pouring rain...so that's my excuse for lack of books I'm sure there are more. 



Last Edited on: 7/10/10 7:55 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 7/10/2010 10:01 PM ET
Member Since: 1/17/2009
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I got tired of Jenna Black's Morgan Kingsley really quick. Loved the first book, 2nd book was very similiar but I thought, well, OK, maybe it is just starting off slow ... read number 3 and 4 and more of the same. And I mean, exactly the same. What, do they have only one bar in their entire city to go to? And that is where all the action in the entire city is? And even with 4 books down, the characters have zero growth. Zero. Have not picked up 5 yet, don't think I ever will unless someone tells me it greatly improves.

Weather Warden ... same thing. I was very intrigued by the first book or 2, enjoyed a few more although not as much, and then the next few I read just to see what happened in the plot but I didn't actually care about it anymore. I am still considering the Outcast series, though. I'm on the WL, but haven't read it, don't know if I will ... eh, maybe.

I do love The Hollows, though, Not tired of those at all.

And, I am really enjoying Jeanienne Frost's Night Huntress series. Just something about then that catches my fancy. I think they have absolutely held up quality wise through the series.

And I am still reading Anita Blake ... mostly because I just can't believe how bad they are at this point. They are so very very bad that they are almost good again, but in an entirely different way. I'm now fascinated by the absolute horribleness of the "plots". I mean, how bad can she write these and still get them published?????

I know you said no spoilers, but here is a Anita Balke plot for you:
story opens .... sex ... more sex ... more sex ... more sex.... fight with bad guys. ... more sex .... more sex. ...more sex ... more sex ....people take a shower together .... more sex ... more sex. .... anita developes a brand new super power out of the blue she didn't know she had and defeats the bad guys. the end.



Last Edited on: 7/10/10 10:05 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 7/10/2010 10:11 PM ET
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Sara, that plot summary cracks me up.  So true!

I might add Jaz Parks to this list - I loved the first 5, but number 6 did not really do it for me.  I'll still try the next one.

Yeah for Jeanine Frost - love that series and her spin-off (which is more romance than urban fantasy, IMO).

Alice J. (ASJ) - ,
Date Posted: 7/11/2010 8:25 AM ET
Member Since: 5/13/2009
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Michelle I agree House of NIght is awful now. I just won the latest book in a swap, not sure I will read it or just put in another swap.

My two favorite series are Mercy Thompson (I like Alpha and OMega too), and Fever series. I have stayed up all night reading it. The last book is coming out in Feb double the size of all the rest.

I think Richelle Mead's Vampire Academy has stayed quite good

Kim Harrison's Hollow series goes off and on. I thought book 8 was better than the previous two.

Kelley Armstong's Women of the Otherworld has been on the downward slope too, but I will continue to read it.

There are very few writers that can keep a series fresh.

Alice

Date Posted: 7/27/2010 6:57 PM ET
Member Since: 9/5/2007
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I have to agree with everyone on the LKH Anita Blake series. I had to give up on it. But I still love the Merry Gentry series for some reason. I think its because I like Merry and her top two guys Doyle and Frost so much.

I think I'm pretty well done with Sookie too. They are jsut boring to me now.

I've had a hard time with the Riley Jensen series all the way through. I have Bound to Shadows on the TBR but its not calling my name.

I'm worried that many people have listed Weather Wardens as a series that gets terrible. I am reading book 2 right now and burning through it. I have books 3-5 on the TBR and book 6 is on its way to me....I really hope I like it through book 6...LOL!

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