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Topic: Why Get the Whole Series before Trying It?

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Subject: Why Get the Whole Series before Trying It?
Date Posted: 12/15/2008 12:19 PM ET
Member Since: 9/23/2006
Posts: 6,362
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I know we're all different and that's really good, but I just don't get this (unless maybe there's only a couple of books).  What if you don't like it?

I did it once (3 books) and, although I was glad I read them, it took me years to finish them and I finally kind of skimmed the last one.  They were just a little too grim for me, although I still consider them excellent books in their way. 

I think I made it to page 5 of one series that someone must have praised.  Maybe the author was a very, very nice person.  I truly think that happens sometimes with authors, fellow writers and fan lists.  If I had gathered all the books and they were like that one I'd have probably been spitting nails :D

Date Posted: 12/15/2008 2:15 PM ET
Member Since: 5/18/2007
Posts: 13,223
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I have no idea why I do this. I don't always have to have all of them to start but I will usually have most of them before I start a series. 

I guess because, for me, half the fun of reading a book is acquiring the book. :)  I love books, I love sets of books. And since I volunteer at a rather large FOL every week and attend a HUGE FOL sale every month I come across books fairly easy and inexpensively.  

I buy off of eBay ... I rarely buy new unless it's a "must have" and I'm going to go straight home and read the book so my financial output isn't a whole lot to collect a whole set of anything.

I've been dissapointed a few times and decided not to continue but I have plenty of outlets, including here, to give books away so it's not a big deal to me.

Last Edited on: 12/15/08 2:15 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Geri (geejay) -
Date Posted: 12/15/2008 3:48 PM ET
Member Since: 9/2/2008
Posts: 9,094
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I prefer to read the first in a series before I buy or get more.  I have been burned mored than once getting the series because it was recommended or "sounded" good when  read the review.  Now, I'll make the decision after I read the first book.

Each of us a different though and that's what makes it fun to be here.

Date Posted: 12/15/2008 5:07 PM ET
Member Since: 1/26/2006
Posts: 318
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I've also done that a few times.  Now I try to limit myself to the first two, and if I just can't get into the series after two I won't pick up anymore.  Right now I'm sort of struggling thru the "Fred Vickery" series by Sherry Lewis.  Unfortunately, I have them all.

Date Posted: 12/15/2008 6:29 PM ET
Member Since: 8/10/2005
Posts: 4,601
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I'm the same way, Diana...I don't get it at all! I guess it's because I've had so many series "go south" on me midway through that I won't even order more than one or two books ahead in a series that I am currently enjoying. I've been known to read eight or ten books of a series and then end up throwing the next one against the wall (well, not literally--but figuratively!) and never read another. So to me it makes no sense to collect six or ten or a dozen books and *then* start reading them only to find out I dislike it and trade 'em all off unread. But hey, to each his or her own I guess.


Date Posted: 12/15/2008 8:00 PM ET
Member Since: 12/19/2007
Posts: 2,408
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Yeah, I tend to WL the first book in a series and then RL the rest. If I like the first book I'll get the others. I don't have to own all of them to get started though!
Date Posted: 12/15/2008 8:05 PM ET
Member Since: 9/23/2006
Posts: 6,362
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That is so true too!  As I've gotten older <ahem>, I realize that it seems to be difficult to sustain a long-running series and not every author can manage it. 

I've come close to heaving them against the wall, lol.  I'm not sure which is more irritating - the new one I started with such high expectations or the old favorite that disappointed so badly.

This is the first I ever heard of collecting so many before trying them though and it seemed unusual.  There are excellent books that just aren't "me" books.  Not that there's anything wrong with it if that's how you want to do it.  I mean, somebody thought the Kindle would be great because all their books could be stored electronically and all I could think was they would have no pictures, no tissues, no plates.


I don't think this one will hurt anyone's feelings... When I was ordering from half.com, I'd order quite a few from one seller because it was a lot cheaper that way.  There is a series (forget the author) called the Main Line series and I read about 3 of them, thinking they had to get better or they wouldn't have published so many.  Honestly, the only character I could stand in those was the dog.  I think the wife's name was Ginger. 

Last Edited on: 12/15/08 8:13 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 12/16/2008 4:14 PM ET
Member Since: 8/10/2005
Posts: 4,601
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ROFL!! The "Main Line" ...that's Donna Huston Murray's series I think. I got the first one because my maiden name is Huston...I finished it but only just. It was pretty bad. That's twice I've been burned doing that 'getting a book because of the author's name' stuff. (Do NOT, under any circumstances, bother with reading Fault Lines by Nancy Huston! LOL)....good thing I have Charlie Huston to redeem the family name! I think we must be related--he looks so much like my younger brother it's not funny! One day I'll e-mail him and ask.


Date Posted: 12/16/2008 10:27 PM ET
Member Since: 5/10/2007
Posts: 5,526
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I try to just get the first book in the series but sometimes I will get a really good deal at a UBS or through the bazaar and collect most of a series...and this is why I have nearly 400 books in my TBR pile!

Date Posted: 12/17/2008 1:52 PM ET
Member Since: 8/16/2005
Posts: 1,563
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Now I try to limit myself to the first two, and if I just can't get into the series after two I won't pick up anymore. 

That's the way I do it as well.

Date Posted: 12/17/2008 3:14 PM ET
Member Since: 7/31/2006
Posts: 14,634
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I'm not sure...I tend to 'glom' everything or at least a bunch by an author because I hate to love something then have to wait for the sequel..yet the flower shop mysteries are a prime example..I bought a bunch and struggled through the first 2 and now am debating if I need to just wave bye-bye or at least try to struggle through the othes since I already have them...I have way too many books and am seriously thinking it's bye-bye time after the holidays so I can get them out of my hair and move on to other stuff. I also bought a b unch of the 'murder can' series..can't remember the author but eilrich or something like that. I liked the first book but for some reason got sidetracked and got no further. don't really regret those...others I've read and anxiously awaited the next book's release - trailer park mysteries and victoria laurie's though I have to admit I'm not as excited as I was with the first 5 books or so...my newest favorite are the crochet mysteries though I don't really like the main character at all..just like reading about the crochet stuff!

Date Posted: 12/19/2008 8:25 AM ET
Member Since: 9/23/2006
Posts: 6,362
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You may well be able to get a great deal on that "Main Line" series :D  It seemed as though there were quite a few of them.  That's why I tried several - I thought they couldn't all be that bad or they'd have quit publishing them.  I assumed someone must have liked them.


LOL!  This almost deserves its own topic!  I've accidentally managed to find two different series whose main character has my maiden name.  The first was Phoebe Atwood Taylor's (Alice Tilton) Asey Mayo's Cape Cod series and the latest is Marjorie Eccles Gil Mayo series of English police procedurals.

I think I'm doing a bit better so far although Atwod Taylor is an oddball read.  They are supposed to be an authentic glimpse of the Cape pre-tourist (or something like that); however, it bothered me once when one of her characters said something to Asey Mayo about checking into his ancestors.  I've only gone to Cape Cod 2x and I know there are very neat old historic cemetery markers with "Mayo" on them there.  I remember assuming there was no relationship and I was right since I later learned that my family was from Boston; however the names and times were close enough that it got confusing.  I would think most people would know about that family who'd done any research.

This is totally off-topic but, if I recall correctly, that was the family who sent the wife back to England to have their children and that helped me keep things straight.  Can you imagine that though?  Getting on the ship and going back to England in the 1600's to have your children?  I suppose it was the same old, "I just can't find a doctor I like here." ;-)

I may have to try Charlie Huston.  I can't remember if there's any reason I haven't except too many books.


Kat (polbio) -
Subject: Series
Date Posted: 12/20/2008 2:03 PM ET
Member Since: 10/10/2008
Posts: 3,067
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I am guilty of getting the whole series before starting it. I like series reads and usually if a book is really good, I move on to the next book right away and I dont want to have to wait until I can get to the store again. But then I wind up with tons of books on my shelf as I pass back and forth between the series. I have about 5 or 6 complete series sitting on my shelf that I alternate through. I guess if I just stopped finding new series to read I could catch up, lol

Date Posted: 12/26/2008 11:45 PM ET
Member Since: 10/2/2007
Posts: 349
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I have noticed that some authors get better and better and other authors just try to stretch stories with everything but the kitchen sink.  It's hard to predict from the 1st or 2nd in the series.  I have been burned more than once by ordering as many in a series that I can.

Date Posted: 12/29/2008 7:15 AM ET
Member Since: 8/10/2005
Posts: 4,601
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Diana, I would recommend Charlie Huston, but he's not for everyone. Certainly not for the faint of heart or prim and proper. Cozy readers should avoid him like the plague unless they want to be shocked into next Tuesday. LOL


Date Posted: 1/3/2009 6:41 PM ET
Member Since: 7/12/2008
Posts: 1,181
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Susanna, I would give the Flower Shop mysteries another shot, especially if you already have the subsequent books. The first one was just OK, the second not bad and the later ones somewhat better. I'm now waiting for the next to last one, but I'm pretty far down on the WL. Can't justify buying it, though, as my TBR pile is pretty big.

Date Posted: 1/8/2009 11:04 AM ET
Member Since: 8/13/2006
Posts: 83
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I have to say that I am guilty about buying the series before reading.  But I know about myself that I am a hoarder!  I have sooo many books, but you wouldn't know it by my bookshelf because I have a hard time parting with my books.

Date Posted: 1/28/2009 3:54 PM ET
Member Since: 4/2/2007
Posts: 180
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I like series and started buying the whole series ,if I could, before I even read the first one. But like others have stated ,that didn't always work out. So now I start with the first one and make my way through the series. It works out well to WL the next book in line. Until it arrives there are many others waiting to be read.