Every reader is unique. It’s what makes reading such a personal experience. Lisa and I have figured out a lot of our personal reading quirks and one that we don’t agree on 100% is reading order.
I’m crazy OCD. It’s insane. Even if a string of books is loosely related, I want to read them in the correct order. I also like to have the complete series before starting it. Now this doesn’t extend to on-going series. I read all the Harry Potters as they became available and it’s the same with the Black Dagger Brotherhood. I like to stay current with the books in a series. I recently found FictFact. It’s an on-line website where you can keep track of the series that you read. It gives you the reading order and sends you e-mails when your books or authors are updated. It keeps me sane. Yeah, my habits are my own special brand of nuts.
I used to care about reading order, but the last year or so it’s become a well conceived fantasy believing that I’m actually capable of reading every single series in order. We all know the saying: Too many books, too little time. I used to be so disappointed after going to the bookstore and picking up a few good books only to realize they were books 6, 7, 8 or whatever number of a series. I always felt obligated to read the series in publishing order to fully enjoy the latest novel. I’ve realized it’s just not necessary! Case in point, I’m currently reading Portrait of Seduction by Carrie Lofty. This book is loosely related to the previously published Song of Seduction which I read over a year ago and absolutely adored. As I was reading, I discovered another couple in the book was featured in the first book and I had completely forgotten! After the story refreshed my memory, things started coming back, but I was clueless for a good part of the book. Did it ruin the story that I didn’t remember? Absolutely not! Would the story have been more enjoyable, had I remembered all the details from the first book? Probably not so much that it would drastically change my rating of the book. Character driven series, like Anita Blake, Sookie Stackhouse, Harry Potter…those I would probably have to read in order. Only because they are a continuous story and not loosely related like most series. Anyway, I’m rambling…here’s my point: Life’s too short! Read what you want, when you want! 😀
Tell us what you think! Do you have to read a series in order?