f0zKg0J4zFLYz-Yq0aednQVqREE Once Upon a Prologue: Guest Who - #3: Series vs Stand-Alones with Jessica from Thoughts at One In the Morning
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Friday, April 6, 2012

Guest Who - #3: Series vs Stand-Alones with Jessica from Thoughts at One In the Morning

{ ++ } Welcome to Guest Who, a new feature here at Once Upon a Prologue, for 2012.  I wanted to get to know my followers and fellow bloggers better, so this idea was born: a guest-post swap!  Each month, I'll feature someone new.  We will write either on the same topic, or one of our own choosing, and it'll give me a chance to see what y'all think about the chosen topic, and have loads of fun!  And of course, discussion is welcome, anytime!

To get involved (and I hope you want to!), send me a email at courageousgrace (at) gmail (dot) com with the subject "Guest Who," and we'll have loads of fun doing our posts!

{ ++ } Today's Guest Who features Jessica from Thoughts At One in the Morning.  Jessica's blog is one that I always adore visiting, because of her honest, well-thought-out, fun posts.  (Plus she's fun to squee with over books and TV shows, like Castle!)

Mismatching clothes, giggling uncontrollably, yelling at Penskes, and takin' names since 1985. I blog and write. I love lemurs, music, and TV on DVD, especially Castle. Just a 26 year old girl who's a little too strange to pin down into a few words. Still trying to figure out her future, still trying to figure out herself. Currently in the midst of her quarter-life-crisis yet getting very close to reaching an epiphany. Love to read, love to write, love to write about reading!

Find Jessica online:  Blog | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads

"Stand Alone Vs. Series"

An age old question (that isn’t in the form of a question).

I can definitely attest to reading plenty of each. I spent my early years reading from the Anne Of Green Gables series (L.M. Montgomery) and The Baby Sitter’s Club series (Ann M. Martin). I also read plenty of stand alones like Blubber (Judy Blume) and The Incredible Cat Caper (Stephen and Kelly Roos). I’ve spent my teen-adult life still reading many in each category. As much as I love both stand alone novels and book series, I do have some issues. So, I am going to break it down into the pros and the cons. 

Stand Alone

Pro: One book can tell a whole story, a sometimes epic journey, and it doesn’t last longer than it should to get the point across.
Con: One book is sometimes never enough when you come to love the characters and adore the path of the story.

A good book can be so absorbing that you just want to keep reading. You want to find out what happens in the end and you don’t want it to end at the same time! Why? Because when it ends, there’s no sequel… there’s no novella… there’s no ’to be continued’… there’s nothing more. It’s saddening, and sometimes extremely maddening. Then again, when you think about it, the story didn’t need to continue. It was perfect just the way it was. It contained the right amount of growth, the right balance between the plot and characters, the right words in the right places. Everything was just right, there was nothing missing, nothing that didn’t belong, nothing that was forced to add to the word count. It was just one great story.

Some of my favorite stand alone books: Wanderlove by Kirsten Hubbard, The DUFF by Kody Keplinger, The Sky Is Everywhere by Jandy Nelson, Blue Sky Days by Marie Landry.


Pro: The story keeps going so you can read more intriguing tales and be around characters you never wanted to leave.

Con: The story gets dragged out for far too long ruining it with unnecessary characters and plot twists that make you want to pull out your hair.

A good series can keep us guessing and on the edge of our seat. You can’t wait to finish the book so you can move on to the next book. Why? Because it is so addicting! Unless, of course, the author changes something in a way to create drama or friction or destroy the whole reason why you started reading it in the first place. You wonder why the story can’t just end so you can stop being sucked into it even though you hate where it’s going. You want to stop reading but you can’t. There are too many questions that will keep rolling around in your head until they get answered… by the 30th book in a series that should have ended at the 3rd. Or if the story does end, you cross your fingers that it doesn’t end horribly and you haven’t wasted your time reading it from start to finish.

Some of my favorite series books: Divergent by Veronica Roth, The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins, Delirium by Lauren Oliver, The Unbecoming Of Mara Dyer by Michelle Hodkins.  

As you can tell, no matter what, stand alones seem to be winning the battle because the only thing bad about them is that there isn’t MORE of them. Series books are more popular these days because they seem to get more interest going than stand alones. Yet the words ‘stand alone’ pretty much epitomize the point: they can stand ALONE. I think it would be great to see more of them than series. 

These are just my thoughts though… how about everyone else? What are your opinions of series versus stand alone novels? Do you have a preference or do you like them both equally? 


Anonymous said...

I agree that standalones are better than series. Mostly because the great majority of my favorite books have a sequel that ruins EVERYTHING.

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