Young Adult Fiction for Adults discussion

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Ugh! I'm so annoyed ...

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Peep (Pop! Pop!) ...that every single book that comes out is now a series. Like one isn't good enough.

...with every romantic story being a love triangle. Again, like one isn't good enough.

/mini-rant


message 2: by Sheila (new)

Sheila (sheilaj) I know Peep, how will we ever conquer our tbr lists when every book you check off comes with an additional 2 or 3 or 4 in a series.


message 3: by Bill (new)

Bill (reedye) | 42 comments Me too Peep. I also feel a great book is somehow slightly spoiled when an unexpected follow up appears.


message 4: by Jason (new)

Jason (foreverjuly) | 176 comments That's an interesting observation. I think it has a lot to do with both the marketing and the appeal for authors. Getting people hooked on a brand so they keep coming back and back is very appealing for publishers, and then authors want to get that prolific series author, where readers get obsessed with the characters and start dressing like them at fan shows.

As for love triangles, that's just the way of the world.


message 5: by Becca (new)

Becca | 1608 comments I prefer series where the first story is about one person, the story is finished as far as that character is concerned and there's no need for a follow up but the second book is about their kid or something. Not the same person. That way you can read one book, be satisfied and not feel like you have to gobble books just to get your fix on one character.

And the love triangle is old news. Let's get a new take on problems with love please.

Did I mention that I agree?


message 6: by Jenny (new)

Jenny (narcisse) I have noticed several different authors saying that they wrote a standalone book, and then once they got a publisher for it, the publisher wanted them to make it into a trilogy or series. I don't mind trilogies and series; a lot of the time I love them, in fact. But to see it becoming the norm is upsetting, especially when it is obvious that it's because the publishers want to squeeze more money out of a good story.


message 7: by Peep (Pop! Pop!) (last edited Jul 25, 2010 03:57PM) (new)

Peep (Pop! Pop!) Becca, that's really the only time I like a series (actually that's a lie, I do like a few series, but I grumble while enjoying them so as to keep up appearances and all) is when it focuses on different characters. Sometimes I scream (to myself), "that's old news! Quit being so dramatic and let's hear about your boss or neighbor!".


Peep (Pop! Pop!) Jason love triangles are rare in real life!

They don't have to be series in order to get love. Jane Austen does pretty well :P


message 9: by Bill (new)

Bill (reedye) | 42 comments That's true Jenny. I know authors who only got a deal on condition there was a sequel. Publishers seem to be getting really lazy. Quality seems to be secondary too.
And to clarify what I said earlier. If I know it's a series from the start, that's OK. Although I've given up on a few already, first book was ok or worse so I'm pretty sure I'll just get it reperated for book 2.


message 10: by Daniele (last edited Jul 25, 2010 04:07PM) (new)

Daniele Lanzarotta (danielelanzarotta) | 19 comments I actually just wrote a blog this past week about book series vs. standalone. I personally like trilogies and series more than a standalone book and at least in my case it really doesn't have a thing to do with branding or marketing. As a reader and writer, I just feel that with a series I get more attached to the characters. I also LOVE cliffhangers, which is another good aspect of a series... and knowing there is more to come! ;)


message 11: by Becca (new)

Becca | 1608 comments I would say love triangles are extremely rare in real life. Real life is more like you go through a million of the "maybe's" just to find a handful you could live with which you pick one from that fits your ideals most closely and really, problems in love more arise because people tend to "settle" or be a perfectionist so no one is good enough for them. Love is so twisted I think the "love triangle" is the easy way to put a semi-interesting love story into a book that focuses on something else all together. Done ranting about that.

On a different note: Ugh, I'm so annoyed with the explosion of vampire novels lately. Hey, I know, let's all jump on the money train and see if we can get a piece of that. Does anyone come up with an original thought anymore? I've come across a small few lately, and honestly I feel bad for authors who are trying to make it now because there are so many books out there they have to compete with.


message 12: by Peep (Pop! Pop!) (new)

Peep (Pop! Pop!) Becca I do enjoy paranormal!

Authors, I can totally see the pull of a series from your point of view. I mean, if you enjoy writing, and you love what you're writing, why not? I'd probably view the publisher telling me to crank out more words as a nice challenge.

Daniele, I only like cliffhangers when the next book is already out :P


message 13: by Tanya (new)

Tanya Mac (yoyochkmeouthotmailcom) | 45 comments Becca i am so with you on the Vampire front...I was never a big fan to begin with! Thats milking the skinny cow to death!!


message 14: by Becca (new)

Becca | 1608 comments I enjoy good paranormal occassionally, but the last time I was in the bookstore it seemed like that was all I could find. I like books with original ideas, so when you come across sixty books with the exact same story line told from sixty different perspectives it gets old. And I have to wonder: Are you writing this because it's an idea you fell in love with or are you writing it because it will sell? Tanya, you said it well, lol!

Don't get me wrong, I enjoyed Shiver, Twilight was interesting, I liked Lament, I'm sure Vampire Academy started out well and it and BDB are on my tbr pile. I'm just saying I'm annoyed that it seems like no one else is having original thought lately.

Books like Graceling, Powerless, and Fablehaven have original ideas that are well-developed and I'll keep buying and reading them to my heart's content.

As far as cliffhangers, I'm with Peep.

Series books aren't all bad. A series only goes bad when the idea/problem gets stale or drawn out to a point where the characters are just stupid for not figuring it out or if there isn't a point (which usually means more and more and more books are added because you never reach "the end").

hahaha! bad topic for me. I'm discovering I like to rant. I should probably just shut up and enjoy, but I currently have nothing to read. Ugh!


message 15: by Daniele (last edited Jul 25, 2010 06:18PM) (new)

Daniele Lanzarotta (danielelanzarotta) | 19 comments Becca,

I cannot stand when a series gets drawn out. One of the main points of a series, in my opinion, is to allow more time for the characters and their stories to develop.

I also cannot imagine having to write something based on selling points only. I would probably sit there and just stare at the computer for days and get absolutely nothing done. lol In fact, here is my number one writing tip: write first, then worry about getting it published...


message 16: by Jana (new)

Jana Oliver | 9 comments For some authors, it takes numerous books to convey the vast canvas of their story. The trick is to know when that story is done and not go beyond that point. It's difficult to draw that line if the series is doing really well and a publisher wants more books. Some authors are incredible at writing long running series (Jim Butcher comes to mind) but others should have changed to a new story about four books ago.


message 17: by Daniele (new)

Daniele Lanzarotta (danielelanzarotta) | 19 comments Well said, Jana! :)


message 18: by Jana (new)

Jana Oliver | 9 comments Thanks!


message 19: by Amber (new)

Amber Lehman (amber_lehman73) | 6 comments Becca,

I agree that that's all that seems to be in the bookstores as well. I was at Barnes and Noble the other day checking out titles and almost every one was paranormal or vampire-based. I do believe that you will enjoy the BDB series though. It's pretty original and offbeat. I started with book 3 to see if I would like the series because it got the highest reviews. It was amazing! You may want to start with that one and then if you like it, pick up book 1 and go from there.


message 20: by Chachic (new)

Chachic Becca wrote: "I prefer series where the first story is about one person, the story is finished as far as that character is concerned and there's no need for a follow up but the second book is about their kid or ..."

I agree with you, Becca! I don't mind when a series features the same world but different characters. Kind of like the Sevenwaters series by Juliet Marillier. :) Another series that comes to mind is the Samaria series by Sharon Shinn.


message 21: by Chachic (new)

Chachic Jana wrote: "For some authors, it takes numerous books to convey the vast canvas of their story. The trick is to know when that story is done and not go beyond that point. It's difficult to draw that line if th..."

You have a point there, Jana! One of my favorite urban fantasy series right now is the Kate Daniels series by Ilona Andrews and I love how they developed the characters in that one. You could really feel Kate grow as a person and she really changes in the span of the books.

Although I get Peep's frustration. I do love a lot of series but sometimes, I look for standalones because I want to finish reading a story with just one book.


message 22: by Chachic (new)

Chachic I don't like love triangles either! Especially when I feel like the story doesn't really call for it. Love triangles always end badly because at least one person is bound to get hurt.


message 23: by Becca (new)

Becca | 1608 comments /applauds Jana, I agree, well said. A few longer running series that were well done certainly come to mind like Harry Potter. The thing that makes series like that so successful is the characters are continually growing, facing new challenges, and becoming ever dearer to our hearts, but there's also a point in the series that it ends and you can say, "Ya, well thought out place to end the story /applaud, well done".

This is going to either sound really funny or harsh and I can't decide which, but I'm particularly annoyed when the author doesn't finish the dang series before he/she dies. Robert Jordan comes to mind. The Wheel of Time series was epic beyond describing and all the characters were so incredibly detailed that it's no wonder he wrote more than 20 (?) books, but I'm pissed he died without me getting to know the end of the story. ROFL!

Chachic - I'll have to check out the Samaria series if you think it's up to snuff with Marillier's work. And love triangles don't always end with someone getting hurt. I've read quite a few where it goes beyond hurt and one person dies. That essentially ends it, unless he/she comes back as a ghost, which I've never read.


message 24: by Chachic (new)

Chachic Becca, they're going to finish the Wheel of Time series though, right? I mean I think I saw somewhere that Brandon Sanderson was writing the last book. Although of course, it will feel different with a different writer.

I hope you do try the Samaria series! I've heard so many good things about Sharon Shinn's work that I decided to give it a try. Archangel is really lovely. It's different from the Sevenwaters books because it doesn't have that fairy tale feeling but it's still good.

LOL on the idea that the person will come back as a ghost. I know what you mean, sometimes the other love interest is just killed off to have a neater ending.


message 25: by Jason (last edited Jul 26, 2010 12:02AM) (new)

Jason (foreverjuly) | 176 comments I agree with Becca, vampires are just to overdone. Sadly, I know a handful of people writing their vampire novels now, hoping that they'll somehow still get swept into the trend. Really though, if you read too many of any kind of novel, they're going to start to look the same.

And how dare an author die before finishing the series! I mean, come on, where are your priorities! It's a travesty if you ask me! :)


message 26: by Chachic (new)

Chachic Yes on vampires being overdone! Forgot to reply to that one since so many topics were discussed in this thread. I don't even have a favorite vampire book/series. I mean I liked the first few Vampire Academy books but I tried reading the latest and for some reason, I just couldn't get into it. Although I'm looking forward to reading more paranormal urban fantasy books like Patricia Briggs' Mercy Thompson series.


message 27: by Lani (new)

Lani (crahfty) | 253 comments So as not to repeat, I would just like to say I agree with pretty much everything that's been said.

I personally feel sucked into a series if I read the first book and don't hate it. I guess I get too easily involved with the characters. There are just too many good stories to waste my time reading a series that drags. I haven't picked up the House of Night (Marked) for that reason.

One series I have actually vowed to not complete reading is the Immortal Series by Alyson Noel. I read the first three books and, after hearing there will be a fifth book, can't bring myself to read the fourth book Dark Flame. I think it was originally supposed to be a trilogy but when the series was extended it was like Noel didn't know how to keep the story going. Nothing really happens or is resolved in the third book and I fear the fourth book will be a bad continuation to get to the fifth book. Ugh!

...I like to rant too, lol...


message 28: by Jana (last edited Jul 26, 2010 08:05AM) (new)

Jana Oliver | 9 comments Chachic - I so, agree, Ilona Andrews' Kate Daniels series is consistently excellent. I read a lot of Urban Fantasy (both adult and YA) and it's rare a series can hold the strength from book to book.


Snail in Danger (Sid) Nicolaides (upsight) | 36 comments Agreed with the thought that vampires are overdone. For a while I was liking Kim Harrison's (non-YA) series, but now it just seems to have gotten somewhat strung out and weird. I'm even tired of new urban fantasy/paranormal romance generally, and sometimes I find myself wishing it would just go away.


message 30: by Jana (new)

Jana Oliver | 9 comments Becca - Brandon Sanderson has picked up Jordon's pen and is completing the series, with full approval of Jordon's wife and access to his files. So there may be a conclusion after all.

RE: series fail. The problem, from an author's standpoint, is that the publisher may only be willing to give you a contract for two or three books up front. It's a lot like a TV series. Do you pack all the really cool story arcs in the first three seasons, or do you hold some back and hope the series is renewed? If the books are a success the publisher will want more. The issue is whether that "more" is really worth the dead trees. If, like Butcher and Andrews, you can continue to develop the characters and the world, then it's all good. If not, I stop reading midway through the series. I find that a total bummer.

Neil Gaiman recently said in a Telegraph (UK newspaper) article that vampires are over-farmed. He's right.


message 31: by Heidi (new)

Heidi I am having this issue with the Gone series by Michael Grant. I read the first two books, and liked them well enough, but now that I found out there are going to be at least 5-6 books in the series, my heart is no longer in it! I mean SERIOUSLY how much can you write about a series of young kids that never leave one area???? p.s. ENOUGH with the vamp books.


message 32: by Becca (new)

Becca | 1608 comments I'm glad someone is going to finish the Wheel of Time series! Is there an ETA? I read all the books and when it wasn't resolved in the last one I could find I through a hissy fit. However, I'm a little leery of other authors finishing work that wasn't completed by the original author. I read a couple Tolkien books that were completed and published by his son and they were not good at all, forget being epic like the rest of Tolkien's work.


message 33: by Jana (new)

Jana Oliver | 9 comments Becca - looks like THE WAY OF KINGS will be out Aug 31, 2010. So not very far away at all.


message 34: by Becca (new)

Becca | 1608 comments Fabulous! I hope it lives up to the rest of the series.


message 35: by Bill (new)

Bill (reedye) | 42 comments The Way of Kings is Sanderson. I think The Wheel of Time comes to and end with Towers of Midnight Nov 2010 and finally A Memory of Light due Nov 2011.


message 36: by Alan (new)

Alan (coachmt) | 72 comments RE: Wheel of Time - there was supposed to be one final book, which has now turned into three ginormous books. I was pretty disgusted and will wait for library/paperback for those. The first one is out now in hardback.

RE: Vampires - Buffy the Vampire Slayer was pretty much the be all, end all for me about vampires... but I'm old : )


message 37: by Heidi (new)

Heidi Buffy is the be all end all. I agree.


message 38: by Amy (new)

Amy (3601144-amy) | 41 comments Peep: looks like you got something started. .. ;-)


message 39: by Alan (new)

Alan (coachmt) | 72 comments Peep is a mover and a shaker!


message 40: by Peep (Pop! Pop!) (last edited Jul 26, 2010 07:56PM) (new)

Peep (Pop! Pop!) Yeah right! More like a lounger and a slacker.

I don't think I've read that many vampire books. Most don't appeal to me, and the one I like I made an exception for. :P (Actually it's a horrible series that sucked me in, go figure!).

I'm scared to finish Stephanie Plum because I can't imagine what more she can get into... and the books are still coming out. There, I said it!

Please don't tell me there are so few of us that feel that way about love triangles?? (Did that sound right?)


message 41: by Heidi (new)

Heidi Stephanie Plum is the best kind of series though. Nothing ever changes, so there are no cliff hangers and you can jump into the next book whenever you have time.


message 42: by Roshini (new)

Roshini | 243 comments Peep wrote: "Yeah right! More like a lounger and a slacker.

I don't think I've read that many vampire books. Most don't appeal to me, and the one I like I made an exception for. :P (Actually it's a horrible s..."


I agree with you guys, there've been one too many love triangles, and at the end of the day...what's the point? Perhaps it's a gimmick to get us on separate teams?:-)


message 43: by Chachic (new)

Chachic I'm glad that Becca agrees with me on the Sevenwaters series and Jana agrees with me on the Kate Daniels series. I guess it really just a matter of character development and whether the author still has a story to tell. I mean the Sevenwaters was supposed to be a trilogy but Marillier decided to write more books in the series and the latest installment is excellent (which is saying something considering she came back to the series a couple of years later).


message 44: by Roshini (new)

Roshini | 243 comments Chachic wrote: "I'm glad that Becca agrees with me on the Sevenwaters series and Jana agrees with me on the Kate Daniels series. I guess it really just a matter of character development and whether the author stil..."

Maybe the last book is great because she had those two years in between, rather than churning out a sequel when she didn't have much to go on. OK, that feels like a dig at the publishing industry:-)


message 45: by [deleted user] (new)

I also agree that the series thing is annoying. A lot of my friends too (and I admit myself a couple of years ago) only would like to write series. What is wrong with just one book? Some of my favorite books are single novels (excluding Harry Potter which needed to be a series and was the best series ever).
And the love triangle thing, I know! Its very silly. These things rarely happen! Also if you read the synopsises of all of the new books they all contain "smouldering guy" "hot guy" "smoking guy" "hotess guy in school/town". Is there no variety or imagination in these new authors?


message 46: by Jaimie (new)

Jaimie (jaimier) | 1275 comments In my experience real life love triangles only exist in the mind of one of the people involved. Usually it is based in jealousy and the other two don't really understand the "torment" that is going on for the other party. I don't know any girl that was truly torn between two guys because she loved them both - and if some girl tried to explain that to me I would probably just think she is a attention wh*** who really didn't have true feelings for either guy. I am not saying it's impossible but just highly unlikely. And in the books it is always two guys fighting over one girl because if it was reversed the female readers would be disgusted! Love triangles do get people interested though and that is why they continue to haunt us.


message 47: by Peep (Pop! Pop!) (new)

Peep (Pop! Pop!) Hahahahaha Jaimie and Isabelle!

Ack! Like my tbr pile has any more room. I'm switching to my Kindle and will try to put a dent in the books I have there. Some non-rom and non-series so I should be safe.


Stacia (the 2010 club) (stacia_r) I call love triangles the safe fantasy, sort of like overly alpha males.

In real life you wouldn't want the headache of a love triangle, neither would you want an arrogant jerk of a man that thinks he can control you, but there's something about both of these scenarios in books that makes them hot IF they're done right.


message 49: by [deleted user] (new)

Thanks Peep. I think one of the worst books I've read that is super cheesy is "One Night that Changes Everything" by Lauren Barnholdt.


Cassi aka Snow White Haggard | 2261 comments Series can complicate things if they are overly long. I'm good with limited series/trilogies (7 books, 3 books, quartets like Tamora Pierce does) but I can't deal with series that go on and on (like the song on Lamb Chops). I almost never know where to start and I hate it when people tell me "It doesn't really matter," because I always want to read from the beginning, not a random point in the series.

I never liked vampires to begin with....so as far as vampires being overdone I hear you. It's hard to walk into a bookstore and see the "Best in Teen" table and everything is vampires.

As far as love triangles, they remind me of Jack-Sawyer-Kate on Lost which drove me nuts at times. By the finale I didn't care who hooked up (though I never really liked Jack) as long as they stopped having Kate change her mind every two seconds.


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