So Many Loose Ends

Lately I’ve been feeling like I have so many unresolved storylines just swirling around in my head and weighing me down. I posted a long time ago about how I suck at reading series but it’s really becoming an issue for me with all these series I’m in the midst of. I’m in series limbo all the time and I just feel there are all these loose ends just flapping about in my mind. I just feel like I’m in the middle of all these stories and my mind is in too many worlds and waiting on too many cliffs. I feel like I’m playing freeze tag with all these characters and they are just standing there frozen, in mid-run, waiting for me to tag them back in.

I’m BURNT OUT on series, friends.

I’ve been reading YA since August 2010-ish and, as of right now, I have 49 series that I’ve started and not finished (not counting companion novels). And I’m slated to start more in the next two weeks (City of Bones and Harry Potter).

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In fact I don’t even want to know how many series I’ve ACTUALLY finished. Ok, I looked, that number is sadly only THREE in that time.

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Why I’m In The Middle Of So Many Series:

- All of the books aren’t out yet. Therefore I’m just waiting and waiting and reading a million other things in between the release dates. NOT MY FAULT.
– I get distracted by all the shiny other books and STILL don’t pick up books in a series even if they are all out.
– I get tricked into reading books that I THOUGHT were standalones. SERIOUSLY STOP DOING THAT TO ME.

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- I have this weird thing where I don’t like my reviews to be consecutively from the same series so I end up spreading them out.
– I’m not sure if I want to completely give up a series or not. I thought the first book was meh but I’m still curious but can’t decide if it’s worth it to keep going or just ask someone to tell me what happens. I’m the worst at giving up on series!!
– It seems like that’s ALL there is these days. Ok, that’s a dramatic statement but when I go outside of contemporary YA there aren’t as many standalones.
– And not as serious but I get SCARED to move on to the next book in the series. Irrational fears I tell ya!

I think my challenge to myself for the Fall is to DECIDE which series I’m going to get RID of at least 3 series I don’t want to go on with and then pick 3 series to finish by the time Winter starts. I’ll probably go with series I only have one book left in to boost my confidence in my series sucking ways. Maybe that will help me feel like I’m less weighed down  by all these series. Maybe I should vow not to start any new series until I finish one??

Let’s Talk

Do any of you guys feel this way about series? Like you are burnt out or weighed down by all the unfinished stories? I’m curious if you know how many series you have started but not finished vs how many you have actually finished. How do you decide when to quit a series (please help me!) and do you abandon series often? Anybody else get tricked into thinking a book is not a series and then find out it is later or am I just not observant??

Book Review: The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater

The Raven Boys cover Maggie StiefvaterBook Title/Author:The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater
Publisher/Release Date
: Scholastic – September 2012
Genre: YA Fantasy/Supernatural
Series: Yes, The Raven Boys is book 1 of The Raven Cycle series
Other Books From Author: The Wolves of Mercy Falls trilogy, The Scorpio Races, Book of Faerie series

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I checked this bad boy out from my local library!

 

 

Blue has always kept her distance from boys as she’s been told by her clairvoyant mother that she’ll cause her true love to die. When she accompanies her mother, as she always does, on St. Mark’s Eve  she is able to see, for the first time ever, one of the soon-to-be dead walk on the Corpse Road as her mother days. The spirit, a young boy her age, reaches out to her and directly communicates with her. She crosses paths with the boy, Gansey, and find out he attends the wealthy private school — a Raven Boy. She finds herself curious about Gansey and soon finds out he and his best friends — Ronan, Adam and Noah — are on a mysterious quest that she also finds herself wrapped up in full of myths and magic and darkly strange things.

WOW! This is one of those books that I’m going to have to reread FOR SURE before the second book comes out because there is just SO MUCH TO THIS BOOK. It almost borderlines on TOO much to my brain but seriously these pages were bursting at the seams with WONDER and IMAGINATION and MYSTERIES I NEED TO KNOW. I read The Raven Boys in a single day — a single, very stormy wrapped-up-all-in-my-blankets kind of day and that is how I recommend you to read it. For that day, I pretty much could not pluck my brain and my heart out of this mesmerizing and fantastical world where there is magic, psychics, kings and ley lines and other supernatural things that just were so intricately woven in to the contemporary lives of our characters. Dishes were not done, the husband felt neglected (psh not too badly because that meant a whole day of video games) and I don’t recall getting up too much. One of the most absorbing books I’ve read in a long time!

This story was just SO unique and fresh. I’ve only read The Scorpio Races by Maggie Stiefvater but both of these books are the two most unique novels I’ve read in a long time. I found The Raven Boys to be much less poetic in nature (but still gorgeously written) as The Scorpio Races but The Raven Boys captured the same captivating storytelling ability I found in The Scorpio Races.  OH my stars can Maggie Stiefvater tell a story!  And the characters! I LOVED Blue and just found myself wanting to go on adventures with the Raven Boys — Gansey was definitely the most memorable for me! I just felt how confused Blue must feel knowing how that she’ll kill her true love with a kiss and then she sees Gansey walking on the Corpse Road and then later actually SEES him as a living and breathing human. I felt her curiosity and I understood why she wanted to spend her time with Gansey and the boys and became so enamored with their mission to find Glendower — just as enamored that I, as a reader, became with this journey and all the mystery! There’s just so much depth to these characters and yet I still feel like there is so much to learn about them!

I will say, while this wasn’t a HUGE problem for me, if you are the type who doesn’t like to wait a while for the story to come together..this might be hard for you…but just keep reading and then the story will really start to come together. And at times there is SO much going on — so many different threads to this story — and it can kind of be overwhelming that it borderlines on confusing at times. You’ll find yourself immediately taken to this story but it’s definitely a slow burn type of book.

Maggie Stiefvater is a master storyteller and I tumbled into these pages and stayed there until I finished it in one day. There’s a lot going on on in this novel but I found myself breezing right though it because of Maggie’s knack for just sucking you into the pages whether we are reading about Blue & her clairvoyant family or the Raven Boys search for Glendower. There’s magic and kings and psychics and ley lines and all sorts of mythological and supernatural intrigue worked right in there with the contemporary lives of these truly memorable, fleshed out characters! It takes a little bit to get into the story and there IS a lot going on but it’s just such a unique and wonderful story that is worth being patient for.

The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater

Let’s Talk: Have you read this one?? Heard of it? Did you enjoy it or feel differently than I did? Which Raven Boy was your favorite?? I loved Gansey the most though all of them have a place in my heart!

Top Ten Series I Haven’t Finished – Top Ten Tuesday

 If you read my “Series Suck..Or Is It Just Me” post I tackled this topic about starting series and not finishing them. I have since added more books to my list since then! Some are STILL on this list. Boo. I stink. For this list  I stuck with series that have all the books out now rather than series that aren’t complete yet.

Series That Are Complete That I Haven’t Yet Finished!

1. The Jessica Darling series by Megan McCafferty: WHAT IS WRONG WITH ME?? I LOVE this series (seriously — fave series status already at book  2) but when I finished  Sloppy Firsts & Second Helpings  I found out that SOMEHOW I owned all books but book  #3. Since then I’ve just not gotten around to buying the next book! I loaned book 1 & 2 to my little sister and she texted me her LOVE for the series and reminded me I need to finish this series!!

2. The Summer series by Jenny Han: I just reviewed The Summer I Turned Pretty yesterday and I am really happy I finally got around to this series! Now I’ve just got to finish it sooner rather than later…because I am the worst at starting and not finishing them!

3. Nightshade series by Andrea Cremer: I finally read Nightshade this year and I enjoyed it — mostly because of the interesting world building — not so much about the romance unlike everyone else. BUT I still want to continue on with this series because it was interesting. I feel like I haven’t just because paranormal is never what I pick up first when I look at all my books! PLUS I’m excited to read the prequel — RIFT!!

4. The Stork series by Wendy Delsol: In my Reconsider or Release feature I mentioned that I just couldn’t finish this on audio even though I was ALMOST done with it. I really thought I would like this based on other friend’s recommendations but sadly I didn’t and I just doubt I am going to ever finish it despite the fact I am kind of interested in what happened in the other two books.

5. The Shade series by Jeri Smith-Ready: I LOVE this series after Jen of Makeshift Bookmark raved about it and sent it to me so that I could FINALLY experience it for myself! You all know that I’m really picky with my paranormal and I LOVED Shade!! I just need to get on it and finish this one!

6. The Flappers series by Jillian Larkin: I really enjoyed Vixen and Ingenue! Totally satiated my historical fiction fix plus it’s set in the 1920′s and has no lack of flappers, gangsters, guns and romance! I have the final book, Diva, sitting on my shelf and I just need to be in the mood for some historical fiction and then I’ll complete this series!

7. Kingdom of Xia series by Cindy Pon: I think there are only really two books to this series but I really enjoyed Silver Phoenix as someone who doesn’t read a ton of fantasy!

8. The Giver series by Lois Lowry: Ok, as a young reader I reread this book AT LEAST 10 times. No exaggeration there. And then until I started blogging in June 2010 I had NO IDEA that this was a series. I just didn’t know. I didn’t have Goodreads back then to tell me this valuable information or the google machine. I just DIDN’T KNOW. I’m unsure of whether or not I’m going to finish it but DAMN I loved The Giver.

9. Percy Jackson & The Olympians series by Rick Riordan: I think this series is really great. I finished the first two books but is it weird that I just don’t really care to finish it? It’s middle grade and I don’t really do a lot of MG personally. I think I have read enough to recommend it to younger readers but I just don’t want to finish it. I actually made a blogger friend (Alexa from Alexa Loves Books) just tell me everything that happens in the rest of the books because I don’t plan on picking it back up.

10. The Millennium series by Stieg Larssen: I enjoyed The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo. It was thrilling but I don’t know..it’s been like 4 years since I read it so I don’t know if I really care to finish it anymore. Should I?? Is it worth it??

This doesn’t even count all the series that AREN’T finished yet that I still need to finish a book two or something!  WAY.TOO.MANY.SERIES. Have you read any of these series in full??

Series Suck…Or Is It Just Me?

Yep, it’s just me. I SUCK at reading series. I have SO MANY series that I start (and passionately LOVE the first book) and then I never pick up the next book…not because I don’t LOVE the story or want to read it but because I SUCK at being a good series reader.

This is what happens:

 

I start reading the first book and I get sucked in by its awesomeness, the world, the characters lives or whatever else I happen to find particularly attractive about said book. I’m a ravenous, reading beast and I can’t get enough of the start to a series.


I finish the book and I FREAK OUT about how I NEEEED to read the next book. I feel like I can’t sleep until I have the next book. I can’t stop talking about it. I have this insatiable need to KNOW WHAT HAPPENS.

But then, and this is where I seem to have problems, is the actual act of picking up the second book in the series. Somewhere between finishing the first one and walking over to my bookshelf I get lost. I’m not even talking about sequels that just aren’t out yet. I’m talking about sequels that I HAVE SITTING ON MY SHELVES or can easily go buy or get from the library. I get so amped up about continuing on with the story and then….nothing. It’s like I get so distracted by other shiny things that I just move on and forget about them. WHO DOES THAT?? I mean, I can’t even explain to you how ready I am to read these second books and then suddenly….it’s 10 months later and I’m like “OH YAH. I was dying to read that sequel…and then I don’t know what happened.”

It drives me BATTY because I wait so damn long and then can’t remember what the first one was all about!

Taking a quick glance at my bookshelf, here’s some of my currently abandoned series that I WANT to finish:

  • Jessica Darling series – WHICH I’m currently remedying as we speak. I was MAD about this first book if you read my review of Sloppy First. I wanted to smooch it and hug it and share with it a milkshake with two straws in it. Jessica Darling’s inner monologue and often humerous, poignant observations often made me laugh out loud. And I can say that I’m not normally a laugh-out-loud-while-reading-a-book kind of gal. I’m a big crier when I read books but gut-busting laughter and snark is only reserved for this series. SO WHY WHY WHY am I NOW, 9 months later, reading the Second Helpings??
  • Harry Potter: Errrm. You guys. I totally read the first book a long, long time ago when I was in middle school. All I remember is something about a train and some weird platform and Hogwarts. THAT IS ALL.  What is wrong with me? I LOVED the first book way back when. I need help. I’m probably going to have to re-read the first book.
  • The Shade series by Jeri-Smith Ready – I am really picky when it comes to the paranormal books I read BUT my friends (namely: one of my blogging bffs Jen from Makeshift Bookmark) were OBSESSING over this series. Well, I gave into peer pressure and totally enjoyed Shade by Jeri Smith-Ready. I was SO ready to read Shift, which Jen so lovingly sent to me, but then I had read a review book and then…what? WHAT HAPPENED? How could I dooooo his when I was freaking back flipping with the prospects that Shift would bring?
  • Little Blue Envelopes – I didn’t LOVE 13 Little Blue Envelopes but I truly did want to read the second book!
  • Bumped series: The lovely Pam from Bookalicious sent Thumped to me months ago and I was SOO excited to read it because I really did enjoy reading more of a satirical dystopian novel. Bumped was so different to me and I really enjoyed it!
  • Kingdom of Xia series: I seriously LOVED Silver Phoenix by Cindy Pon. I really don’t read much fantasy because I’ve always thought I just wouldn’t like it so I was pleasantly surprised when I flew through this and wanted to continue on with this story.
  • Delirium series: I really enjoyed Delirium by Lauren Oliver. I wasn’t sold at first but I warmed up to it and then devoured. Pandemonium made my top ten YA books I had to read in 2012 and WHY haven’t my grubby paws been all up on this book like an 8th grade boy at a dance??
  • Seeds of America series: I LOVED Chains by Laurie Halse Anderson. I typically don’t read Middle Grade Literature but THIS was one of my all time favorite historical fiction books ever. I can see it becoming one of those books that teachers integrate into their curriculum. I bought Forge the day it came out and never read it….I have issues.
  • Percy Jackson series: I read the first two and just stopped…only because I wanted to break up my reading of the series with some adult books. And then I just never got back into it…
  • Millennium series: I really did enjoy The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo. I just never felt any urgency to pick up the second one but I look at it on my shelf and want to kick some ass with Lisbeth again.
  • Crank series: I read Crank YEARS ago…way before blogging…and that was in 2010 when I started. I thought it was so interesting. I even own Glass but just never have gotten to it.

This is just what I found on my shelf at a quick glance. I don’t even want to know the ones I missed or that I just don’t even own. It’s PATHETIC.


Am I the only one that has this problem? If you don’t have this problem, how do you tackle your series? Read them one after another so you don’t forget? Or do you space them out? I can’t keep track of them ALLLLL. Maybe that’s the problem…too many series out there!!

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