Thursday, October 3, 2013

I know I'm not alone when I say that it's entirely too difficult, not to mention insufferable, waiting a whole year -- and sometimes more! -- between installments in a series. Obviously, the hardest part is the waiting.  And it's even worse if the release gets pushed back.

But even more dreadful than the waiting is the forgetting.  I've already read 150 books this year, which is the same as I read in all last year. Which is to say, I read a lot, at least by some standards.  So much so that's it's easy to confuse characters and plots in my current reads, as well as recently finished reads.  Not to mention how difficult it is to remember key elements in a book I read a year ago.

I resolved this pretty quickly when it happened, so most of you are probably oblivious, but last Tuesday, I posted a teaser from Never Fade by Alexander Bracken, and the author politely advised me that the teaser in question contained a rather large spoiler for this sequel to last year's The Darkest Minds.  I don't know how you guys pick which teasers to post, but I usually head to somewhere in the middle of the novel and then read a little bit and try to find a tantalizing teaser.  One that's actually interesting.  I mean, the point of teasing the books is to spark interest in the title, no?

Anyway, this particular teaser made the heroine sound badass. But it also hinted at something or someone that will definitely change the course of the novel.  Except, it had been a year since I read the first book, and so I didn't realize the implications of the teaser. (I'm sorry for anyone who was exposed to the spoiler and comprehended what it means.  It's unfortunate, but I haven't heard from anyone that anything was ruined, so I'm hopeful.)

As soon as I was contacted by the author, I removed the teaser and put a placeholder up until I could get to the book and find a replacement. Alex was super nice about the whole ordeal, even pointing out why said teaser was so spoilery, to which I replied:

Anyway, good author experience...but bad blogger.  Sometimes I can't believe how much it's possible to forget in the span of a year, especially when it comes to really awesome novels like these.  And that's why it's awesome that some authors provide recaps on their own blogs or elsewhere.  Ilsa J. Bick has pretty good recaps for her Ashes series on her blog, and Maggie Stiefvater collaborated with The Recaptains for her recap of The Raven Boys.  Honestly, I wish all authors would do something similar.

And I wish there were more sites or more offerings like those from The Recaptains.  I've often considered doing something similar on my own blog, but I just don't have the time these days.  If I need a refresher, I usually just listen to the audiobook, if it's available.  But that can get costly.

Have you ever committed this reading faux pas?  How do you counteract this problem?  Take really detailed notes while reading to refer to for the next book in the series?  Do you know of any other sites that recap books?


  1. I agree, a year is a really long time to remember the details of one book you've probably read just once. Sometimes, I have to reread my own review just to trigger my memories of the previous book, but there are just some details that I cannot remember. Case in point, I just read a sequel and I cannot remember who's who anymore, so I feel like I'm still going in blank. However, I know the authors are trying their best to write a book and get it out as soon as it's polished, so I can't really complain much about it. *shrug*

    The author is so nice for gently notifying you about her concern. It's a good thing she went to you directly :)

  2. I have a pretty good memory and some books are very good at remind you what happened before, but I sometimes like to re-read to make sure. I make good notes and that also helps to refresh my memory :)

    I just hate waiting, especially when I loved the book so much I need to continue <3

  3. Oh I so need to check the recaptions out for Raven Boys about to start Dream Thieves and Can't remember anything. I know what you mean. I do think a year is way to long but I am sure for the author it can be a time crunch. Series are so hard. I used to wait to read series til they were all out but I missed out on the talks of new novels. No good resolve to this problem. sigh :(

  4. That was good of the author. I could see myself doing that too because reviewing books does have you reading so many books and its nigh impossible to keep it all straight. I didn't even know there were re-cap sites so I definitely can't offer help there.

  5. I read so many books that it's hard to remember when you finally get to the next one. I tend not to re-read, I either muddle my way through the first bits, or more usually, refresh by looking at reviews of the first book until I remember.

  6. Ohmygoodness YES! I have trouble keeping track of books when I'm reading one and listening to one at the same time, never mind a year later!! And I have absolutely zero time to re-read a book. Because of this, I usually go for standalone books, or books that are more companion where I don't need to remember every details to read the next book in the series. I often only read the first book in a series, just to see what the characters are all about, but rarely continue on from there unless I LOVED the book, so much that I remembered every little detail and can't WAIT to read book two. Like Pivot Point. :D It helps that I just read it last month, too. ;)

    Oh, and btw, I didn't notice your teaser spoiler, so no worries on my part. :-P

  7. waiting is SO painful! I forget a lot about the prior books and try (when I can make the time) to reread or at least skim through the book. Sometimes I worry that I don't appreciate the sequel or companion book because I can't remember the first enough. But who has time to read them all again?

    I think waiting for the next book in Angelfall (after World After) will kill me. Hopefully Susan can get it out in a year.

    Great discussion post! thank you for sharing your personal experience.

    My Friends Are Fiction

  8. Ah, yes! It seems like the waiting is forever and then all the details run in together. Was that twist in the 1st or the 2nd book? Was that info in that one? It's so hard to wait and sometimes even harder to remember so I completely understand! And I either forget the details so when I read the sequel, if I haven't reread the previous ones, I go, "Wait what?" OR since I know this detail or fact, I forget that somebody else might not and that it might be a spoiler. A reader's/blogger's life is hard :)

  9. This is why I usually wait until a series is complete and then read the books back to back. I hate the waiting... which, yes, I'm waiting anyway, but it's not the same. And for those few series that I am reading as the books come out (The Passage, All Souls Trilogy), I always re-read previous books before reading the new installment. I just like to lose myself in a world, and I can't do that if I read one book, wait a year (or more), read the next book...


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