2015 Reading Challenge [Closed] discussion

Off Topic > When is a trilogy really a trilogy?

Comments Showing 1-7 of 7 (7 new)    post a comment »
dateDown arrow    newest »

message 1: by Jean (new)

Jean Cole (joc724) | 115 comments I read The Lewis Trilogy by Peter May and thoroughly enjoyed each book. But at the end I wondered if this was truly a trilogy. Shouldn't a trilogy be a three-part story? In this case, it seems entirely likely that there could be another book by Peter May set in the Hebrides Islands in Scotland with these same characters. And if that happens (just hypothetically) then this is no longer a trilogy -- just the first three books of a series. Wondering if anyone else has had the same experience.

message 2: by Zaz, Mood Minion (new)

Zaz | 1387 comments Mod
I see a trilogy as a true trilogy when it's the same story running on 3 books. Otherwise, it's more a series with several books in it. For the challenge, the 3 first books in a series are ok for these weeks of course :)

message 3: by Laura, Mod (new)

Laura | 599 comments Mod
Ideally, it would be a story that was wrapped up within the 3 books. But since authors obviously like to capitalize on the series (or just continue it for other reasons) then some tend to continue. I personally read The Selection series which was supposed to be a traditional trilogy but was then extended.

I think if it's an intended trilogy when you read it then it counts. I don't think we can help if an author decides to continue it into a series since that's impossible to predict.

message 4: by Emily (new)

Emily I would say that as long as the books are intended as a trilogy, it works as a trilogy, as long as the main storyline is wrapped up by the end of the third book. If the author later chooses to add on more books, or write books to fill in pieces in between, or prequels, or whatever, it still counts as a trilogy. If the main storyline isn't complete in three books and the author has to tell the story in four or more books, then it's not.

Example 1: Divergent, Insurgent, and Allegiant make up a trilogy. That the author also chose to write Four: A Divergent Story Collection (which is stories taking place before the events of the trilogy), doesn't negate this series as being a trilogy.

Example 2: Unwind, UnWholly, UnSouled, and UnDivided is not a trilogy. Before UnSouled came out, this series was originally planned as a trilogy, but the author chose not to wrap up the series in the third book and planned UnDivided to complete the storyline. Since it takes 4 books to tell the main story, it's not a trilogy.

message 5: by SaraFair (new)

SaraFair I began reading the Jan Karon books (At Home In Mitford)as my trilogy and realized that there were quite a few more than 3. I know its cheating, but I like them so much that I am using the first 3 as my trilogy. The story could stop there or keeping going...

message 6: by Biana (last edited Sep 14, 2015 11:18AM) (new)

Biana Personally, I think that 3 is a great number for a series. I think beyond that things get too overly dramatic...like a soap opera.

My example, the immortal instruments trilogy (City of Bones, City of Ashes, City of Glass) was great. Then it kept going. I think there are 6 now. I kept reading after #3 but the quality kept getting worse and the drama between the (admittedly teenager) lovers was ridiculous and the Boss Fight was weirder and weirder. It felt, and I don't know this for certain, but it felt like the author was just milking it for more fame, more money. I haven't read the last two.

There are times when the characters are worth taking over into a new book...I love Janet Evanovich as an author and I think there are 22 books in her Stephanie Plum series (Tricky Twenty-Two) but each book has an end. The mystery is solved, there are no loose ends, the Boss Fight is completed. Of course, there are relationships that are still evolving, but that's life.

I do find now that I look very carefully at the number of books in the series before I start anything. It might be a great book, but if I have to read 4 more before I get the conclusion...I need to know in advance!

message 7: by Zaz, Mood Minion (last edited Sep 14, 2015 12:11PM) (new)

Zaz | 1387 comments Mod
Worst, for some, there is no conclusion available because the author hasn't written it yet! I'd this problem with The Dark Tower (Stephen King): when I started it, the first 3 were written, then some time later the 4th and we had to wait 6 years for the last 3 books! I own The Name of the Wind and haven't started it because the release date for the 3rd book is unknown.
I'm ok with long series if the quality is similar (and good) all along. If not, I'll stop at some point without problem.

back to top