BLOGTOBER Day 10: 10 series I can’t wait to finish

At the start of the year, I was doing a great job of binge-reading series. I have always been the kind of reader who starts a series and never ends up finishing it, so I was proud that within the first couple of months of the year I had read (or reread) five complete series, and was up-to-date and waiting for the next releases of countless others.

Unfortunately, that has slipped over the past couple of months. It began when I asked my mum to recommend us some books, and she recommended five books that were series starters. It got worse as we attempted the Schwab Readalong, managing only to start the series and not to get them completed.

I can’t even keep track of how many series we have on the go at the moment, but I thought I’d use today to talk about ten series that I can’t wait to finish.

All of the sequels in these series are currently released (otherwise this post would have been me talking about lots of books that aren’t released yet!) but I might use a day later in the month to showcase those series instead.

So, without further ado, these are the series I really need to finish ASAP.

1. Strange the Dreamer by Laini Taylor

I read Strange the Dreamer when I took part in the blog tour to celebrate the paperback release, but I still haven’t read Muse of Nightmares. This is mostly because I like having matching copies of books that I buy – a really stupid reason to not read a book I’m sure I’m going to love – and I couldn’t get hold of it through my local library… But I recently became a member of the neighbouring counties library service, and while writing this blog post I have just checked their catalogue and they have Muse of Nightmares available! So that means I’m going to be finishing this series very soon!!!

Strange the Dreamer is a duology which tells the story of a boy called Lazlo Strange, a librarian who is obsessed with a lost city called Weep. The stars align and Lazlo finds himself able to travel to the city, where he discovers far more than he’s expecting.

The end of the first book in this series is absolutely devastating, so I am feeling a bit nervous about carrying on with the story, but the lyrical way that Laini Taylor writes is captivating so I’m looking forward to falling in love with this story all over again.

2. The Girl at Midnight by Melissa Grey

I read The Girl at Midnight before it came out, way back in 2015, and I loved it.

Following a girl called Echo – a runaway pickpocket raised by a secret species called the Avicen – this book features an epic battle between species, as the bird Avicen are bird people and their mortal enemies are the Drakharin, who are dragon people. The stakes are high, the death toll is higher.

I was grateful to receive an unsolicited ARC of The Shadow Hour from the publisher, Atom, and I was so excited to pick it up that I… never did. Oh, the shame. Why did I used to be so bad at continuing on with series?! I actually forgot about this trilogy until earlier in the year when I finally saw the cover of The Savage Dawn, so I’m determined to get this story finished off.

3. Shades of Magic by V.E. Schwab

I read the first book in the Shades of Magic series last month for the Schwab Readalong, and I am planning to read the next two books in the series before the end of the year.

Recently it’s been announced that there is going to be another trilogy sent in this world called the Threads of Power series, which makes me a bit nervous. I have mixed feelings about series continuations, but at least if I manage to get A Conjuring of Light read then I’ll be able to read the next series if I decide to.

A Darker Shade of Magic is set in a world where there are multiple Londons – Red, White, Grey and Black – and each London has a different type of magic. We follow Lila Bard, a pickpocket just wants to be a pirate, and Kell, who is able to step through portals into each of the different Londons.

4. The Smoke Thieves by Sally Green

I would enjoy The Smoke Thieves more if it was an adult fantasy. The world that Sally Green has built is very elaborate and well-crafted, but the story is just a bit boring for a YA fantasy. When I’m reading adult fantasy I expect the plot to be slower, for an intense focus on political machinations and the history of the world, but this is one of the slowest YA fantasy series that I’ve ever read.

It’s a shame, because I loved Half Bad – that trilogy probably should have featured on this list, because I only read book one – but I only have the last book in The Smoke Thieves trilogy to go. The Burning Kingdoms is going to be either a five star or a one star read for me: either all of events of the first two books are going to come together explosively, or the story is going to fizzle out forgettably. I’m really hoping it’s the former.

5. The Wheel of Time by Robert Jordan

The Wheel of Time is a long series, but I’m already three books in and the lowest I’ve rated any of them so far is 4.5 stars, so things are looking promising.

This is the first long adult fantasy series that I’ve ever attempted, so I’m surprised that I’m enjoying it as much as I am. Robert Jordan has a way of making the smallest details of his world vibrant and interesting, and I find myself savouring every moment – even walking scenes, which I’ve never enjoyed before!

Robert Jordan sadly passed away before he could finish this epic series, so the last few books were written by Brandon Sanderson using the extensive notes Robert Jordan left behind. That makes me a little bit apprehensive about finishing the series – I’ve never read a Brandon Sanderson novel and I’ve heard mixed things about his writing – but at least if I don’t like the way the story ends I can pretend it’s just fanfic.

The Wheel of Time series follows a large cast of characters, so it’s hard to effectively sum up what it’s about. What I can tell you is that the wheel weaves as the wheel wills, so if our main characters are about then shit is bound to go down in some way, shape or form.

I’m not a huge fan of Rand, whom the majority of the story is focused upon, but with the first three books featuring a clan of badass magical women, a guy who can mentally communicate with wolves and a man who has amazing luck, there’s a subplot in this story that will appeal to anyone who picks it up. The only downside is that the start is a little bit slow, but if you’ve read and enjoyed works by Tolkien then you should give Robert Jordan a go (nothing can be as slow as The Lord of the Rings!).

6. The Dark Tower by Stephen King

Although not as long as The Wheel of Time series (coming in at seven books, rather than 15), Stephen King’s The Dark Tower series gets progressively larger as it goes on. The Gunslinger is only a couple of hundred pages, while the final book in the series, The Dark Tower, comes in at over 1,000 depending on which edition you pick up. That’s a pretty intimidating size increase.

I’ve currently only read the first two books in The Dark Tower series, and I’ve been conflicted by both of them. My issue with them is that they show their age. The way Stephen King talks about people of colour, mental health issues and women throughout the first two books in this series is not okay, and I find it difficult to look past my distaste of his vocabulary and feel comfortable enjoying the story.

Something about them is still interesting me, though. It’s been a couple of months since I read The Drawing of the Three and the dynamic characters that it introduced regularly pop into my mind, so I do want to continue on with the series… I just don’t think it’s ever going to be a favourite of mine, so it’s hard to dedicate the time to finishing it off.

The Dark Tower series follows a man called Roland, who is the last gunslinger. Throughout the first book he’s chasing a man across a desert, but the plot which you think will weave throughout the next six books resolves very suddenly (and brutally), flipping the story on its head in book two. In true Stephen King style, there are sci-fi elements as well as aspects of horror, so it’s hard to tell what genre you’re reading from page to page, but the first book in the series is solidly a Western.

7. Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins

A dramatic departure from the previous two series I’ve talked about, the Anna and the French Kiss trilogy series follows three girls as they fall in love.

I fell in love with these covers back when I hardly ever read YA contemporary. There’s something about these gorgeous designs that make it impossible to resist picking them up – how have I resisted reading Isla and the Happily Ever After?

I would like to reread the first two books in this series before finally finishing it off, but I have heard very critical things about Anna and the French Kiss since I read it and I don’t think I would enjoy it anywhere near as much second time around. I have fond memories of it, but I’ve definitely read better YA contemporaries in the years since!

8. Potkin and Stubbs by Sophie Green

I only read the first book in the Potkin and Stubbs series last month for Middle Grade Monthly, and I really enjoyed this quick middle-grade ghost story.

Lil Potkin is an aspiring investigative journalist in Peligan City, and she discovers the biggest scoop she can imagine when a boy called Nedly Stubbs asks for her help. Nedly needs Lil’s help investigating a murder which everyone thinks is a missing persons case. Nedly knows better, because he is the murder victim, and he’s now haunting Peligan City looking for answers.

Illustrated by Karl James Mountford, these books are absolutely gorgeous, and I can’t wait to see what mystery Lil and Nedly investigate next.

9. Murder Most Unladylike by Robin Stevens

Unfortunately Robin Stevens released the last book in the Murder Most Unladylike series back in August, which means I only have two adventures left with Hazel Wong and Daisy Wells. I’m gutted, but all good things must come to an end: I’m just glad that this series ended up being nine books long, as there are plenty of stories to reread (and I’ll definitely be enjoying them again when I read them with my children when they’re a bit older).

I’ve read seven of the nine Murder Most Unladylike books, and with Top Marks For Murder on my TBR this month, I’m definitely going to have the final book, Death Sets Sail, read by Christmas.

If you haven’t heard of the Murder Most Unladylike series I don’t know where you’ve been, as I’ve been going on about it for a couple of years now. In this middle-grade series we follow Hazel Wong and Daisy Wells, the president and secretary of the Detective Society, as they travel across the globe investigating murders.

Not only do these books have gorgeous covers, but they have mysteries that will confound even the most avid crime reader. I’ve reread the first six books in the series and found myself forgetting who had done the crime in a few of them, because all of the suspects seem so reasonable! The best thing about these books is definitely Hazel’s casebooks, as they list the suspects, possible motives and the evidence against each of the characters, so nothing is hidden in the attempt to pull the wool over the reader’s eyes.

While writing this post I’ve learnt there’s going to be a spin-off series, The Ministry of Unladylike Activity, so I’m now VERY excited about that. That news makes the end of the Murder Most Unladylike series a bit less bittersweet.

10. A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas

I had to mention A Court of Thorns and Roses, because I’m so desperate to catch up with this series before the release of A Court of Silver Flames that I made my own readalong for them! So far it is not going well – we’re on week two and I’m yet to pick up my copy because I’m STILL struggling to finish Christopher Paolini’s Brisingr – but I am determined to get this trilogy done and dusted.

I read and reviewed A Court of Thorns and Roses the week it came out, preordered A Court of Mist and Fury and eagerly anticipated its arrival… Then I saw how chunky it was and never bothered picking it up. Oops. However, I read House of Earth and Blood earlier this year and bloody loved it, so I have no excuse for not reading Sarah J. Maas’s earlier novels.

I hope you enjoyed this post! Are there any series that you really need to finish? Let me know down in the comments, and we can encourage each other to finish them off together!

See you tomorrow,

Alyce

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