Alchemical Thoughts

Thoughts on finishing series I do not love

Posted on: April 29, 2016

I saw the question about finishing series you do not love over at Cornerfolds.

I have no problem dropping books I do not enjoy. Life is too short and there are too many good books out there to waste time reading something you do not like or enjoy. I firmly subscribe to the Reader’s Bill of Rights, one of which is the right to not finish a book. So I have no problem with skimming books or outright dropping them if the book is not for me. This includes series. If the series starts degenerating into a steaming pile of crap, I will drop it and consider it dead to me.

An example of this is the series The Walking Dead, both the graphic novels and the television series. I started reading the comics before it became a television spectacle, and I did enjoy the early work. However, once the series became nothing more than a paean for stand-your-ground asshole bullies with no reward in sight for the reader other than more grim pessimism, I dropped it. I do not regret that decision, and I have no intention of going back to the series no matter what fanboys or fangirls may say about it. I may check out reviews of it to see how it has progressed, but otherwise I stopped giving a shit about it. There are plenty of other horror works featuring zombies I can read instead.

I will also skip volumes in series. An example of this is The Horus Heresy, a series I generally enjoy. However, like many long term series, individual volumes can be hit or miss. Some volumes in the series have been great. The first three of the series are a good example of good volumes. Later volumes, as I said, can be hit or miss. Any volume dealing with the Dark Angels legion and their primarch, like this one,  is pretty much a disappointment. So while I am not giving up on the series, I know to skip any book in the series dealing with the Dark Angels. So, I probably will not read the complete series, but I will read enough of it to still get the basic story line and enjoy the series overall.

So no. If I am not enjoying something, I am not going to torture myself for the sake of reading a complete series. Life is just too short for that.

2 Responses to "Thoughts on finishing series I do not love"

I think it’s interesting that you mentioned skipping volumes in long series. I’ve been working through the Wheel of Time series by Robert Jordan for YEARS! People recommended that I skip certain books in the series but I didn’t want to miss out on anything important so I’ve continued reading straight through. Some of the books have definitely been pretty bad… I’m still not sure I could have skipped them though! Great post!

Thanks for stopping by Tracy. Yea, when it comes to some series, I feel pretty safe to skip. WH40K is interesting because there is a “core” series of events, and then a lot of side events and some narratives of the same core events from a different viewpoint/character perspective. So you may already know the basics, thus you can skip things. A couple other series, same thing, not being linear, you can hop and skip. Best, and keep on blogging.

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