Nathan Bransford, Author

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

What Is Your Favorite Series?

While I was away I was able to read a whole bunch of books for fun, including THE NIGHT GARDNER by George Pelecanos, WHAT THE DEAD KNOW by Laura Lippman, EAT PRAY LOVE by Elizabeth Gilbert, and HIS MAJESTY'S DRAGON by Naomi Novik, all of which I enjoyed.

That last one was especially interesting for me because while I really liked reading series when I was younger, these days I find myself spreading out and picking a book by an author I haven't previously read to expand my familiarity with different styles and success stories. So I really want to know what's going to happen in the next book of the Termeraire series, but I'm just so curious to read THEN WE CAME TO THE END and THE LAST LECTURE and and and...

But now I'm wondering: what's your favorite series?


hannah said...

Hilary McKay's Casson Family series.

Though they are MGs...

Gwen said...

Hmm, interesting.

I don't often read series. Lately I've read some of Stephenie Meyer's TWILIGHT saga, but it's not something I absolutely adore. I read YA just to keep tabs on the market, because that is what I write myself.

The only series that I have maintained a fondness for is the CHRONICLES OF NARNIA. Classic and fabulous. :)

I'll be reading Stephen King's DARK TOWER series soon enough, though.

beth said...

Narnia. Of course!

Miri said...

Hmm...the Bartimaeus Trilogy by Jonathan Stroud is brilliant. I mean, seriously, brilliant.

I'm also very fond of the Pendragon books by D.J. MacHale - they're MG/YA but so much fun.

And, of course, Harry Potter. I grew up with them - they'll always have a special place in my heart.

Jeanne said...

The first series I ever fell in love with was the Wheel of Time fantasy stories by Robert Jordan, who also wrote under the names Reagan O'Neal and Jackson O'Reily. Jordan's works will be the subject of JordanCon, a three day genre convention scheduled for April 2009in Atlanta, Georgia. I couldn't put the books down and eagerly anticpated the next iterations. Great stuff. (I neither read nor write fantasy now, but the memory lingers.)

Miss Viola Bookworm said...

Harry Potter is definitely at the top of the list followed by Stephenie Meyer's Twilight series. I also enjoy Lauren Willig's Pink Carnation series as well as Megan McCafferty's Jessica Darling books. And of course, Janet Evanonich's Stephanie Plum series has me cracking up every time.

Lauren said...

Mine's John Updike's Rabbit series (4 novels, 1 novella). Basically, a character study conducted over four decades, both of the author's life and of the main character's. I've read the series twice in full, but sometimes I'll pluck one of the books off my shelves, open to a random page, and just read to the end of the chapter from there. I can find something new and wonderful every time.

Richard Ford's trilogy about Frank Bascombe (The Sportswriter, Independence Day, The Lay of the Land) takes second place for me.

I wish somebody would publish a similar sweeping contemporary / literary treatment of several decades in a female character's life. (Or does that already exist? Somebody let me know!)

Chro said...

My favorite series used to be the Death Gate Saga, by Margaret Weiss and Tracy Hickman, but more recently I've become enthralled by Jim Butcher's Codex Alera series.

...what? I'm a fantasy geek. So sue me.

Anonymous said...

Yes, The Bartimaeus Trilogy is wonderful. Also YA:

Megan Whalen Turner's Attolia books
Derek Landy's Skulduggery Pleasant
Rick Riordan's Lightening Thief
Nancy Farmer - Sea of Trolls/Land of Silver Apples

Kiersten said...

Lemony Snicket's A Series of Unfortunate Events is wonderful. The stories themselves aren't as strong or engaging as other books, but the writing is unbelievable.

Moth said...

Top Three:

The Chronicles of Brother Cadfael by Ellis Peters

The Dragonriders of Pern (only up to Weyrs of Pern, tho. Why she kept going after that one I do not know) by Anne McCaffrey

and Sandman by Neil Gaiman (actually a mini-series I guess. I dunno what the rules for comics are).

Natalie said...

Narnia was the first series I ever read as a kid, so that will always be special to me.

A new series that I've enjoyed would be Melissa Marr's Wicked Lovely and it's sequel Ink Exchange. I'm really hoping there will be a third soon.

freddie said...

His Dark Materials by Phillip Pullman. So far, it's really good.

Also Gene Wolfe's Book of the New Sun series. Still need to start and finish the second half. Wolfe is one of those writers who makes me want to impale myself on my pen.

Sin City by Frank Miller. Love how this one is so dark and . . . well, dark.

I love the Harry Potter series, but I've found that it's like red wine for me. Tastes great, but I often don't remember a thing afterward.

I have a fondness for Narnia as well.

Anonymous said...

I have read many that may be more literary, but Harry Potter definitely!
We looked so forward to each and every new chapter of his story like we were growing up together with him in our household.

Anonymous said...

Probably the Clive Cussler NUMA series with Dirk Pitt. Got me way into reading as a kid. Still read 'em sometimes, although once the big name authors start using their name to have other people write under them, as Cusser and CLancy do these days, it's not the same anymore.

Lately I've gotten into the James Rollins Siogma Force series too, which is good, but Cussler will always be the grandmaster.

Scott said...

That's a tough one.

Does the Hobbit and LOTR count as a series? If it does, that's probably my favorite. But if you have to count the posthumous releases to make it a series, it loses serious points for me.

And what about Shakespeare's series of historical plays: Richard II, the Henry IV plays, Henry V, The Henry VI plays, and Richard III? Hard to beat the Bard, but I suspect you're talking novels here.

These days it's hard for me to commit to a series because I'm trying to read a little more widely than I have for a while.

A writing group member recently recommended a book to me. I hesitated to buy it because it's the start of a series, but it looked really interesting so I did. Haven't read it yet. I need to finish a couple other things I've already started first.

Another friend recommended The Ladies #1 Detective Agency series. OK, she more than recommended it. She gave me the first three books. This is a series I probably never would have picked up myself, but I started reading out of a sense of obligation because she'd bought me a nice boxed set and spent a few bucks. To my surprise, I really enjoyed the writing in those first three books, so I'll probably read more eventually.

I should also add my voice to the Narnia series. I'd read it in bits and pieces over the years, but last year I started to reread the whole thing in order. Still have a couple books to go. (See earlier comment about finishing stuff on my reading pile.)

I read the whole HP series, which for me ranged from Loved It (books 3 and 6) to Hated It (book 5--which almost made me give up on the rest of the series), with everything else falling somewhere in between.

I also enjoyed Kevin Crossley-Holland's Arthur series.

Emily said...

My favorite series would have to be the Cal Leandros series by Rob Thurman. The characters are vividly real, and the witty dialogue is to die for.

Anonymous said...

1. The Lymond Chronicles by Dorothy Dunnett
3. Aubrey/Maturin books by Patrick O'brian
4. Parker books by Richard Stark
5. Sharpe books 1-11 by Bernard Cornwell
6. Malazan books by Steven Erikson

I'm sure George R.R. Martin's A Song of Ice and Fire would make the list too, but I haven't started reading those yet.

Bonnie said...

Mine is George Martin's A Song of Ice and Fire.

*waits impatiently for book 5*

I'm not normally a fan of series tales or fantasy, but this one sucked me in totally.

Ulysses said...

In order:
Discworld (T. Pratchett) I can't believe he hasn't been mentioned yet.
Harry Potter (J.K. Rowling)
The Retrieval Artist (K.K. Rusch)

Shelli said...

Actually, I have never read a series. Except for a few favorite authors such as Louise Erdrich and Lee Smith, I usually pick different writers to read. I do want to read The Lord of the Rings series someday.

Scott said...

ulysses, you're absolutely right! Where was my brain? Pratchett's Tiffany Aching books are easily the favorite series I've read in the last few years, and the DiscWorld books I've read to this point (five I think) have never disappointed.

I really should have listed the Tiffany Aching books at the top of my list.

Lora T. said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Lora T. said...

Hmm, let's think...

Narnia and Lord of the Rings. No question. I really liked the Redwall series when I was younger, but I gave up on that one after the twelfth book.

LeeAnn Flowers said...

Definitely has to be the Dragonriders series, by Anne McCaffrey. I was sucked in at age 15 and I still read them over and over. I've never gotten tired of them.

Harry Potter is a very pleasant series, as is Janette Oke's prairie series. Again, I started Janette Oke when I was young and continued with them.

All of these sit on my bookshelves at home.

Other Lisa said...

Most of mine would be mysteries: the series by Ruth Rendell, Laura Lippman, Reginald Hill, Sue Grafton, erm...all those Scottish people...I also loved "Narnia" when I was a kid. "Harry Potter" really was a great read in spite of its flaws and "His Dark Materials" I thought was brilliant - it lost a little steam towards the end of the final volume, but the writing in it is really sophisticated, I thought.

But mysteries are my default.

I have a terrible awful memory for lists so I'm sure I'm forgetting something really obvious.

Polenth said...

I tried to think of some modern series, but I haven't read many complete series recently. I tend to prefer stand-alones these days.

The Griffin Readers - Original Version (Sheila McCullagh)
The Chronicles of Narnia (C.S. Lewis)
Changes Trilogy (Peter Dickinson)

The Foundation Series (Isaac Asimov)
Discworld (Terry Pratchett)
Brain and Brawn Ship Series (Anne McCaffrey)

Hard to Place:
Dinotopia (James Gurney) - The main books are illustrated journals, but there are some young adult novels by other authors.

Anonymous said...

I write YA novels, so that's what I read.

I really loved Scott Westerfield's UGLIES series, but hated his MIDNIGHTERS series. I also enjoy Meyer's vampire series. Hmmm... I've enjoyed the first two books in Ally Carter's spy-school series.

Shelley said...

Do pick up Then We Came to an End. It's delightful and written in first person plural. For a first novel,
that's gutsy.

Irate Teacher said...

Okay, I admit it, I'm a Potter fan, for one.

I also really enjoyed the first two Jack Keller mysteries by J.D. Rhoades (all I've read so far), I LOVE Michael Connelly's Harry Bosch novels, and the Dark Tower books were good as well.

Oh, and you can't get much better plotlines and well-written twists than Jefferey Deaver's Lincoln Rhyme novels. The first Kathryn Dance book was good, too.

Recently I've gotten turned to Robert Crais and Barry Eisler, so I'm betting the Elvis Cole and John Rain books will be up there as well.

And has anyone read past the first Brian Freeman book, Immoral? I liked it, but haven't found Stripped or Stalked through the library yet, so I haven't read them yet. Those may be a winner as well.

AmyB said...

I'm not much of a series reader, which is strange since I like SFF, and that genre so often has a series format. I read a lot, and I'm always looking for that book that just blows me away. So I'll read book 1 of a series, and if I like it but it doesn't blow me away, I won't bother with the next book; instead I'll try something new.

Anyway, I'd say my favorite series is Lloyd Alexander's Prydain Chronicles, which I read over and over again as a kid, and still enjoy now as an adult. Those books have so much heart.

Recently I read book 1 of O'Brian's Aubrey/Maturin novels (Master & Commander) and loved it so much I ordered the 2nd. And that right there is atypical for me, so maybe that one will end up being a favorite series, in time.

Cami Checketts said...

Clive Cussler's books with Dirk Pitt are a favorite of mine. I also loved the Left Behind series by Jerry B. Jenkins and Tim LaHaye.

JES said...

I love series. It's a little tricky to happen upon the first one, the first time -- but when you find the right series, you never have to leave a bookstore empty-handed!

Faves (ones I always watch for):
- Pratchett's Discworld
- Preston/Child's Pendergast novels (Cabinet of Curiosities, etc.)
- Jasper Fforde's Thursday Next books (and the Nursery Crime series isn't far behind)
- F. Paul Wilson's Repairman Jack series

Elissa M said...

I read a lot of fantasy and mystery, so I'm sort of stuck with series whether or not I like them. I really hate it when a novel doesn't end at all, and I've dumped authors who did this to me (unless they were so phenomenally good I was willing to wait for more). That said, both of Jim Butcher's series (Harry Dresden and Codex Alera) are so good I recommend them to people who don't even like fantasy.

Sam Hranac said...

Little House on the Prairie (more so many moons ago)
Discworld (particularly the Tiffany Aching books, but I loved Mort and his daughter as well)
Monster Blood Tattoo (just ready to start book 2, actually – my favorite new series)
The Bandy Papers (WWI Canadian pilot – had me in stitches)

Linda said...

The Jack Aubry books by Patrick O'Brien (of which MASTER AND COMMANDER is *not* the first, but is the most well-known book in the series)

Unblievably good!


Kylie said...

I am still enthralled by the Harry Potter series.

I, too, write YA, so that is the majority of what I read. Right now, one of my favorite series is The Mortal Instruments by Cassandra Clare, the first book being THE CITY OF BONES.

And 250+ queries??? Would there be any statistics coming from that? :-) Or is that too many?

R.J. Keller said...

Dorothy L. Sayers' Lord Peter Wimsey mysteries.

Scott Jones said...

The Aubrey/Maturin series of books by Patrick O'Brian.

La Gringa said...

Carol O'Connell's Mallory series..great crime fiction!

Also, if you like fantasy, Greg Keye's AGE OF UNREASON series...magic and alchemy and Sir Isaac Newton. Awesome and intelligent writing. :-)

Chad said...

I don't read many series books, but The Left Behind series (Dr. Tim LaHaye and Jerry Jenkins) come to mind. More than a dozen books in that series, books I could read in a night (as in, I couldn't put 'em down) and such amazing descriptions that I can picture what happens in the books better than trying to recall a movie I've seen.

Joey said...

I too have enjoyed the YA series; Harry Potter and Twilight, but my friend started me on the Outlander series by Diana Gabaldon and the first book was fabulous - can't wait to start on book 2.

Matatas said...

Series are usually fun, and give you that forbidden "I'm wasting my time reading trash" kind of pleasure that only second-rate literature will give you. Every now and then you have to give Vonnegut, DeLillo and Pynchon a break and go for absolute rubbish like Harry Potter, Lemony Snicket or, my personal favorite, the Professor von Igelfeld series by Alexander McCall Smith.

They are usually quick reading, and satisfy without much effort. Plus, they help keep you off the really low-brow beach paperback garbage like Stephen King, John Grisham and so on.

Howard Shirley said...

Patrick O'Brien's Aubrey-Maturin novels top the list.

Others (in no particular order):

Timothy Zahn's Dragonback SF series. Excellent, lots of fun, great characterization and even reminiscent of Heinlein's classic "juveniles."

Megan Whalen Turner's Eugenides series. Top notch fantasy intrigue novels that never fail to surprise. Exceptionally well written, too.

Naomi Novik's Tremeraire series is a current favorite of mine as well.

I've been enjoying Elizabeth Moon's Vatta War SF series, and just picked up her classic Deed of Paksenarrion fantasy trilogy.

I'm also enjoying Jack Campbell's hard SF series, The Lost Fleet. Worth a look if you like a solid space navy story line.

sex scenes at starbucks said...

As a kid: Narnia, The Black Stallion books, LOTR, Laura Ingals Wilder.

Now, Harry Potter, Carol Berg's series (it's hard to choose just one!), George RR Martin, Discworld, Robin Hobb's Assassin and Fool series...I'm sure there are more!

I find I'm disappointed with some urban fantasy series in that they aren't well rounded and epic enough for me.

JES said...

P.S. Forgot to mention among my favorites: the Jack Reacher books, by Lee Child.

peacey said...

George R. R. Martin's A Song of Ice and Fire series. The man's voice is compelling, the prose is crisp as an autumn day, and the pull-no-punches story is utterly addicting. His name is the one I'd jot down in reply to the statement If only I could write like __________.

Dharma Kelleher said...

I would have to put my favorite as Lawrence Block's "Burglar" series. Bernie Rhodenbarr is truly a charming fellow, as long he's not breaking into my house.

Honorable mentions are Douglas Adams' "Hitchhiker" series, Rowling's "Harry Potter" series and Meyer's "Twilight" series.

Anonymous said...

Does a trilogy count? Pat Barker's Regeneration series about WWI. I've read so many historical novels since that seem to owe a great debt to those fabulous books. Also the Deptford trilogy by Robertson Davies--pure genius.

Eric-Paul said...

The Flashman series by George MacDonald Frasier is one of my favorites that hasn't already been mentioned. They're the Victorian version of Forrest Gump, if Gump were a randy, cowardly cad. Incredible historical accuracy and ripping yarns to boot.

I love series, by the way. Especially ones that have been out for a while. I picked up my first Discworld book when there were more than twenty already out. What a great feeling knowing that I have that many books to look forward to.

nymeria87 said...

Oh my, I'm actually quite the opposite, mostly reading series as opposed to standalones. Let's see what's currently on the list:

1.) Scott Lynch's Gentlemen Bastards sequence
2.) Joe Abercrombie's First Law trilogy
3.) George R. R. Martin - A Song of Ice and Fire
4.) Jacqueline Carey's Kushiel books
5.) Robin Hobb's Farseer trilogy
6.) Lynn Flewelling's Nightrunner books
7.) Richard Morgan's Takeshi Kovacz books

Jared X said...

Douglas Adams's Hitchhikers series is my favorite.

But skip the series and just read THEN WE CAME TO THE END.

Gretchen said...

Harry Potter, natch.
Also, Shannara and Discworld. And all the Star Wars books, but that's mostly just a guilty pleasure.

Rollie Raleigh said...

The ALEXANDRIA QUARTET (Literary, social and historical value). The RABBIT series (Literary and fun). Tom Clancy's Jack Ryan books for escapist thriller/action.

A remark on your "to read" list; I enjoyed THEN WE CAME TO THE END more than I thought for a "popular" book. The use of first person plural through most of it was refreshing, and I prefer swallowing the author's message when it's flavored with a jigger of humor.

Nathan Bransford said...


Ah, music to my ears. I represent the Estate of Lawrence Durrell and the Alexandria Quartet.

Marie Force said...

As a romance writer, I'm a big fan of Nora Roberts w/a J.D. Robb and the In Death series.

The Last Lecture is AMAZING, Nathan. Well worth pushing to the top of your TBR pile. It will make any problems you think you have seem very, very insignificant.

Suzanne said...

Narnia, Robert Jordan's Wheel of Time, Jasper Fforde's Thursday Next series, George R. R. Martin's Song of Ice and Fire.

Those four are about equal standing for me.

Tiffany Kenzie said...

I prefer series to stand alone books. Glad to have you back Nathan, I've been missing the blog.

Jim Butcher's Dresden Files (I lovingly refer to this as Book Crack)-Haven't read his Codex books yet... but will.

Jacqueline Carey's Kushiel's set

Stephenie Meyer's Twilight Saga

Laurell K. Hamilton's Merry Gentry Series

JK Rowling's Harry Potter

Anne Bishops Black Jewels Trilogy

Simon Green's The Nightside Series

Keri Arthur's Riley Jenson Books

Sara Douglass' Wayfarer Redemption trilogy - note I did not include the last three books--I couldn't read anything unless it had an HEA's for years after the sextet ;)

Robert Jordan's Wheel of Time (I admit I stopped at book ten, I'm waiting for the end before I continue, 'cause he keeps stretching it)

And can you tell I'm a fan of series? I guarantee I'm missing a ton.

Anonymous said...

Nobody's mentioned Lois McMaster Bujold's Miles Vorkosigan series, which rather amazes me.

It and Elizabeth Peters's Amelia Peabody books are my alltime favorite series, and I read a lot of series.

I wish I could find more that have the same things in common that these two series have.

Tiffany Kenzie said...

SexScenes@SB: I lurve Carol Berg, but it's definitely a hard pick between the Rai-kirah and The Bridge of D'Arnath series. She sucks you into her worlds and takes you for one helluva ride. :)

I forgot the Thursday Next Jasper Fforde--The man is simply genius.

And funny, the huge romance reader and writer I am... my list is kinda lacking in that direction lol.

Tarot By Arwen said...

I was a fan of Robert Jordan until he turned into the author who couldn't write "The End". I adore Naomi Novik's books. Tremaire is a very engaging character. JR Ward's Brotherhood of the Black Dragon has been good. Oh! Julia Quinn's Bridgerton series! Yummy! And I am currently hooked on Jeaniene Frost's new series. Cat and Bones are fabulous together.

Kristin Laughtin said...

I adore series. After a while, I really had to force myself to start reading new books and expand my library instead of just waiting for the next book in ____ series to come out.

Since childhood, I've adored the CHRONICLES OF NARNIA, and today I still enjoy children's/YA series like Harry Potter or Twilight. As a teenager, I devoured Asimov's Foundation series (but it's been years, so I sadly only remember snippets now). I quite enjoyed most of the Earth's Children series (the series started by THE CLAN OF THE CAVE BEAR). I plan to start (finally) A SONG OF ICE AND FIRE series soon. I recently read Robert Charles Wilson's SPIN and know that it will have two sequels, which I also plan to read.

I've also had an interest in manga for several years, and there are quite a few sophisticated series out there for adults. There are many good graphic novel series too.

Tammie said...

Hmmm, not a big series reader. Back when Patterson hit it big with the Alex Cross series, I admit, they were like candy and I loved them, but now, not so much.

I picked up one of Mary Janice Davidsons UnDead books out of order and immediately had to grab them all out of sheer pleasure. Plus she's the only Vampire chick book I've been tempted to pick up.

And yes, me to, I loved the Little House on the Prarie books!

Adaora A. said...

I would say Harry Potter series. The books are amazing, the films are fantastic. I'm a complete Harry Potter (and J.K Rowling) tragic.


For Romance, I really love Nora Roberts DONNOVAN TRILOGY. Irish blood, Celtic, and rolling hills of Ireland.'s fabulous. Also the STANISLASKI stories are pretty amazing as well. Yes please!

Sam Hranac said...

How did I forget to include Douglas Adams' Hitchhiker series? Put me down for that one as well.

Anonymous said...

Lord of the Rings.
The Narnia Chronicles.
The Prydain Chronicles.
The Dark is Rising series.
The Riddlemaster of Hed trilogy.
Bernard Cornwell's Richard Sharpe series.
Lewis's Space Trilogy (particularly That Hideous Strength).

Alison said...

I love the Temeraire books!

My two other favorite adult series are Jasper Fforde's Thursday Next books and Diana Gabaldon's Outlander books.

And reading so much YA practically makes me a series junkie by default. Currently, I am anxiously awaiting the sequel to Wicked Lovely and the sequel to The Luxe and the next Twilight book and, well, you get the idea.

Gretchen said...

LOTR, and the Narnia Chronicles. Has anyone mentioned Anne Rice's Vampire Chronicles? I liked that series.

Michele said...

LOTR, Tolkien
Harry Potter, Rowling
Dark Tower, King
His Dark Materials, Pullman
My most recent favorite: Percy Jackson and the Olympians, Riordan.
(I write YA also).

I also got hooked on the Wheel of Time/Jordan series. Sadly, Robert Jordan passed away last year. And tragically, left us hanging at book 11 (although I hear there will be one more book coming in 2009).

I see a few others listed here that will go on my list!

susandc said...

For some reason, I love the YA series books the most - Harry Potter, Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants, the Libba Bray books... But I'm over 40 and not planning to grow up anytime soon :)

Ben Sloan said...

Dark Tower.
Stephen King.
No contest.

LizR said...

The Warlord Chronicles trilogy by Bernard Cornwell;
Dragonlance series by Margaret Weiss and Tracy Hickman

Melinda said...

The five books of 'The Wizard of Earthsea' series by Ursula le Guin are wonderful. I couldn't see them mentioned so far and they must be included. Plus everything else already listed.


ps I'm a bit concerned about my word verification - koxusxob

LitWitch said...

THE SEVENTH SWORDSMAN by Dave Duncan (THE RELUCTANT SWORDSMAN, THE COMING OF WISDOM & THE DESTINY OF THE SWORD) as one of the few great cultural-nuanced books that focused on the coming of age for men as mentors and prodigies. Seconded only by THE GANDALARA CYCLE by Randall Garrett and Vicki Ann Heydron. But these are both old series I like to revisit like old friends.

wolf said...

I can't believe nobody's mentioned Terry Brooks and his SHANNARA series.

Then I'd have to say Narnia, LOTR, and Harry Potter.

Tez Miller said...

I love Robert Muchamore's YA series, "Cherub". Great plots, and the best and most realistic characterisation I've ever come across.

Have a lovely day! :-)

Other Lisa said...

Dang, can I second "Thursday Next"? Those books make me laugh out-loud. A little embarrassing since I generally read novels on the exercise bike at the gym...

jill said...

Wen Spencer's Ukiah Oregon books, all of Lois Bujold's series, and Harry Potter. I've re-read each series a few times now.

crapshooter said...

Far ahead of the pack:
1. Brotherhood of War, W.E.B. Griffin

2. Michael Connelly's Harry Bosch series
3. Jonathan Kellerman's Alex Delaware series
4. Donald Westlake's Dortmunder series
5. Nelson DeMille's John Corey series
6. Steven Cannell's Shane Scully series

shannan said...

-Terry Pratchett's Discworld books (including the brilliant Tiffany Aching sub-set)
-Lois McMaster Bujold's Vorkosigan series
-Laurie J. Marks' Elemental Logic series
-Lynn Flewelling's Tamir trilogy

All speculative fiction, all super smart and compulsively readable. :-)

Erika Robuck said...

The OUTLANDER series by Diana Gabaldon is the most entertaining and historically fascinating reading I've done in awhile.

Oh, and it's got some great smut, too.

Anonymous said...

Tom Clancey's Jack Ryan books

Lawrence Sanders' Deadly Sin series
Lawrence Sanders' McNally series

KL Grady said...

Kim Harrison's Hollows series
Rachel Caine's Weather Warden series

I also just found Carrie Vaughn's Kitty series. So far, it's tasty.

Bartleby717 said...

A few not yet mentioned that get my vote:
1. The Cairo Trilogy, Naguib Mafouz
2. Border Trilogy, Cormac McCarthy
3. The Buru Quartet, Pramoedya Ananta Toer (OK, pretty obscure, but if you're interested in Indonesian history, don't miss it!)
4. "Children of God" and "The Sparrow" Mary Doria Russell. (Do 2 count as a series? Whatever, this is sci-fi at its best -- blows Pullman's Dark Materials away, and I LOVED that series. (not really fair to compare, tho, since Pullman's YA, Russell isn't....)

Anne-Marie said...

Mostly mystery series here: P.D. James' and her Dalgliesh books, Reginald Hill's Dalziel & Pascoe, and Elizabeth George's Inspector Lynley, of which I am reading the latest right now.

Harry Potter and Anne Rice's vampires were also great favourites.


Anonymous said...

hi my favorite series were really as a child. The first as a young child was The Faraway Tree series by Enid Blyton, then maybe eight the Narnia series, Lord of the Rings as a young teenager and the wizard of earthsea series. Then nothing until I read a Cormac McCarthy trilogy. Then the Harry Potter books which I read to my daughter. Mostly my books tend to be stand alone as I don't read fantasy.


Serenissima said...

On the YA front:

The Uglies
Lord of the Rings
Harry Potter

On the grown up front, I used to read the Jack Ryan books by Tom Clancy and the Kay Scarpetta books by Patricia Cornwell.

Although this probably doesn't count as a series, I just read Joanne Harris' fantastic sequel to Chocolat, which is The Girl with No Shadow.

Joseph L. Selby said...

Memory, Sorry, and Thorn by Tad Williams (The Dragonbone Chair, Stone of Farewell, and To Green Angel Tower). These books were fundamental in a time where many people were trying to steer me away from writing into other professions. It sank its teeth into me like a bulldog. So here I am years later still typing away. In my opinion, Tad's best work is a stand-alone novel called War of the Flowers that I recommend to anyone regardless of whether they enjoy fantasy or not.

Anonymous said...

Shogun series, James Clavell

whatever trevor. said...

although series aren't my thing, i've been prone to go to:

california diaries, bad girls, a series of unfortunate events, gossip girl, the wessex papers, weetzie bat books and the george miles cycle

Isabelle Santiago said...

The TWILIGHT series by Stephenie Meyer is a favorite of mine in the YA market. But in the adult market, I've really enjoyed Karen Marie Moning's Fever Series, which though only two books in, connects to many of her other Highlander books, in an 'along the edge' kind of way. It's a fun read, full of more questions than answers, and great character development.

And one series that I've started and am interesting in pursuing is the Kushiel Series by Jacqueline Carey. It's very high fantasy but the world is lush and fantastic. I've only gotten through 2/3 of the first book and there are nearly 5 more to tackle! It's daunting but exciting! :D

Katzie said...

I enjoy the Vampire Hunter D series, which is currently being translated from Japanese into English.

A Reader from India said...

I loved the Enid Blyton school series as a child (St Clares and Malory Towers).

Narnia, Harry Potter and the Inkheart series are my favourites among the YA / fantasy genre.

Currently, I am enjoying the serial books by Alexander McCall Smith - The Ladies Detective agency series and the stories of Scotland Street are among my favourites.

Anonymous said...

I've got a few I have yet to see mentioned...

David Weber's Honor Harrington series.

David Weber's War Gods Own series.

Rick Cook's sadly never-to-be-finished Wiz Biz series.

C.S. Forester's Hornblower series

Not sure if it counts as a series, but the interrelated Kenneth Roberts novels (Arundel, Rabble in Arms, Lively Lady, etc.)

Diane Duane's Young Wizards series seems decent to me, although one or two of the books got just a touch too surreal.

I'm not especially a mystery fan, but I still enjoy Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's original Sherlock Holmes series.

Also, my favorite Audiobook series is also a mystery series: Rex Stout's Nero Wolfe books.

Oh, and for the person who said Master and Commander wasn't the first of the Aubrey\Maturin novels: Incorrect. Master and Commander WAS the first book. However, what you're probably thinking of is the movie "Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World, " which is loosely based on the 10th book in the series, despite using the title of both the first and the 10th book.

Anonymous said...

As a teen/ pre-teen I was all about The Baby Sitter's Club, Goosebumps, and The Chronicles of Narnia. My friends liked Fear Street but I was too chicken to read those.

In the past few years, my favorite series have been the Big Stone Gap series (from Adriana Trigiani), Harry Potter, and Twilight. Fantasy isn't a genre I go for typically but those last two hooked me from the start. Maybe that's not so bizarre. In both those books, love is a much bigger theme than straight up magic :)

Anonymous said...

the Wars of Light and Shadow series by Janny Wurts. Brilliant.

writeidea said...

Lord of the Rings if you think a trilogy is a series. Otherwise the Weather Warden Series by Rachel Caine.

Heatwave said...

I love the Septimus Heap books by Angie Sage. And Artemis Fowl series by Eoin Colfer. Both series have gotten better with each book.

Jordyn said...

When I was in love with the Baby-Sitters' Club books, but now my favorite is Ann Brashares Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants series.

Kalynne Pudner said...

It intrigues me that most of the answers seem to be children/YA.

I'm another vote for NARNIA. By far. Then in order, ANNE OF GREEN GABLES, HARRY POTTER, and THE SISTERHOOD OF THE TRAVELING PANTS. And my one and only choice for grown-up series, KRISTIN LAVRANSDATTER.

Angela K. Nickerson said...

My all-time favorite series: the Betsy-Tacy-Tib books by Maude Hart Lovelace. I knew I would marry my husband when he told me he had read and loved them, too. Parents, read them to your children. They are a lovely, nostalgic view of small-town America at the turn of the 20th century. My copies are tattered and so well-loved.

I will second the Anne of Green Gables vote. In fact, LM Montgomery wrote several other series, and I think I have read everything she ever wrote.

As a child, I hated to have a book end. Still do! So, I was drawn to series. I literally lived the Little House on the Prairie series (had sunbonnets and prairies dresses, played "dugout" in my sister's closet...). I also loved Encyclopedia Brown and the Boxcar Children... Nancy Drew... the Hardy Boys... the classics!

I'd love to find another series that gets me that excited. HP rocks, of course. I confess to reading all of the Shopaholic books, but I am not into SciFi or Fantasy... so, what's a girl to do?

Simon Haynes said...

Garth Nix's Abhorsen books were great.

The Swallows & Amazons books (Arthur Ransome) - really good. I grew up with these & the Famous Five.

Vanessa said...

I loved the Anne of Green Gables series growing up, as well as Biggles and the Dune series.

Of course, Harry Potter has to appear on the list, but my favourite is still Terry Pratchett's Diskworld.

Jonathan Wakeham said...

Michael Dibdin's Aurelio Zen novels — wry, witty, deadpan, each set in a different part of Italy, and picking up some of the tone of the location e.g. Dead Lagoon, set in Venice, is particularly morbid and foggy, while the Tuscan one is bright and fizzy. Sadly Dibdin died last year, so there will be no more adventures.

Anne-Marie said...

I was thinking of another series I loved when I read them- Denis Lehane's Patrick Kenzie series, which started with A Drink Before the War and included Gone, Baby Gone. I was sorry to see that series end, although he is still one of my favourite writers.

Jenny said...

I love Robert Jordan's Wheel of Time - I hope Brandon Sanderson does the last book justice! Peirs Anthony's Xanth is always fun to read, too!

I also love Clive Cussler's Dirk Pitt adventures. Even now that he's writing them with his son, they're fantastic. :)

I recently got hooked on Jim Butcher's The Dresden Files. <3 Never thought I'd be one for urban fantasy, but I guess I am.

Anonymous said...

Enid Blyton's boarding school series - Malory Towers and St. Clares.

Madeleine L'Engle's Austin Family series.

Alicia said...

I'm a serial series reader. I've loved them all the way back in elementary school with Madeleine L'Engle's TIME QUINTET (A WRINKLE IN TIME, etc) and THE AUSTIN FAMILY SERIES (RING OF ENDLESS LIGHT, etc).

Right now the only YA series I read is THE CONFESSIONS OF GEORGIA NICOLSON series by Louise Rennison; it's VERY funny, engaging read done journal-style.

I also read both of Laurell K. Hamilton's series and just finished BLOOD NOIR after a 7 hour marathon reading session. Her books are very easy to read and are completely different from what I write, so it's like a vacation for me.

One of my most favorite series, though, is Stephen King's THE DARK TOWER. I find it amazing how many of King's other works he has incorporated into the 7 book series.

Ilana said...

Mary Stewart's King Arthur series - it started with THE CRYSTAL CAVE.

mlh said...

Neil Gaiman's SANDMAN is definitely at the top of my favorite series list. Stephen King's DARK TOWER would have also made the cut if he hadn't taken so long to get it out, which made me drop away from the story.

I used to be a big reader of fantasy when I was a kid, and I have to agree with wolf's comment. Terry Brooks' SHANNARA has to be on the list. Also, Richard and Wendy Pini's ELFQUEST. I also like DRAGONLANCE by Margaret Weiss and Tracy Hickman, but I guess I'm a little bias on this since one of the authors has the same last name as me.

I wish collections of short stories could be considered a series. Then I would have named Edgar Allan Poe's TALES OF MYSTERY AND IMAGINATION. For some reason, short fiction always seems to get shortchanged - no pun intended.

Anonymous said...

Hands down, Stephen King's Dark Tower series. I'm not usually a series fan, but this one kept me interested from start to finish.

Nancy Beck said...

Lord of the Rings.

Didn't care for Narnia; don't know why (although hubby loved it).

Mitchell Graham's fantasy series, starting with The Fifth Ring (book 2 is The Emerald Cavern, book 3 is The Ancient Legacy) was a nice find for me a few years ago, especially as there weren't a heck of a lot of reviews around at that time. Sounds like the typical fantasy trope - a youngin' who has powers he didn't know he had - but it's written so well, with such awesome characters (including a battling priest!), that I couldn't put it down. The 2nd book isn't as good as the first, but the third book was spot on again.

The Belgariad by David Eddings. Classic. Worth every penny. Fun in a rolicking, Tolkienesque way. (I've referred to it as "jokey Tolkien" because he borrows some stuff from Tolkien but makes it his own; that includes a *lot* of humor ::squee!::, especially the character of Belgarath, an immortal who loves to go around in rags for clothes, to drink beer - when he isn't doing his immortal shtick.)

Can you tell I *really* like this one? Yeah. :-) (Don't care as much for the follow up, The Mallorean.)

Sword of Change series by Patricia Bray - just finished book one of this series, and it was quite good. Brooding lead character, doesn't trust most people (for a good reason, IMHO). The other characters are also good and believable. I've got the other 2 books in the series on order.

Last, but not least, is the newish Raine Benares series. I just happened to pick up the first book, Magic Lost, Trouble Found, and absolutely loved it! Kick-ass heroine, humor, a couple of hunks ::whee!::, a really good, hissable villain - what more could I want.

Still have to pick up the 2nd book, Armed and Magical, though.

Can't think of any others at the moment. :-)

Nancy Beck said...

Silly me.

The Harry Potter books, of course. D'oh! :-) Since I don't do hardbacks, I'm waiting-waiting-waiting for the last book to come out in paperback.

And another "d'oh!" moment - the Stephanie Plum books. Have all the paperbacks up to 11 or 12, I think. As I'm a Jersey girl, I've laughed especially hard and long at these (although Ms. Evanovich did mess up with the Giants cheerleaders thing in one of those books: They've never had cheerleaders, and I've been watching their games since the late 1970s.)

Laura in Aurora said...

Wow...I love series writers, so for me, it would have to be:

George RR Martin's Song of Ice and Fire
Robert Jordan Wheel of Time
Philippa Carr's books (not so much a formal series, but a series of historical romances that follow a family tree from medieval times through the early 1900s by the author Victoria Holt)
Madeleine L'Engle's Wrinkle in Time series
JK Rowling's Harry Potter
Jean Auel's Clan of the Cave Bear many.

mkcbunny said...

Recently, I've been audio-booking Sherlock Holmes. Not all of the mysteries themselves are captivating, but I love Conan Doyle's voice.

I was re-reading Oz books into my 30s, so that has to be tops. Potter and Pullman were both obsessive reads. Dan Simmons Hyperion/Endymion quartet; could not put them down, although I didn't enjoy the second two as much as the first two.

mkcbunny said...


Not enough coffee yet this morning.

Nancy Beck said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Surly Jason said...

Sad to see the lack of Peter F Hamilton's Commonwealth Saga on this list ... oh well, my march has it's own drummer.

Anonymous said...

Hi Nathan. Welcome back.

I'm a series reader from waay back.

-- Narnia, of course!
--Alfred Hitchcock's Three Investigators series
--Prydain Cycle by Lloyd Alexander
-- The Dark is Rising by Susan Cooper
-- Time Quintet by Madeline L'Engle
-- EarthSea by Ursula Le Guin
-- Pern series by Ann McCaffrey
-- Enchanted Forest series by Patricia Wrede

--The Bartimaeus Trilogy Yes!
--Scott Westerfeld's Uglies series
--Eoin Colfer's Artemis Fowl books
--Gerald Morris's books based on the Arthurian tales -- especially The Savage Damsel and the Dwarf
-- Diane Duane's Wizard books
-- and I, too, like the Fae series by Karen Moning.

Funny, most of my series reading is done in the MG and YA age group. Hmmmm.

WandaV in AL

Just_Me said...

Sci-fi: The Price of the Stars Trilogy

Historical Fiction: The Initiate Brother Duology

Fantasy: Discworld by Terry Pratchett

Suspense: I'm torn between Hercule Pirot and Kinsey Millhone

Urban Fantasy: Dresden vs. Dead Witch Walking series

I guess it depends on what I'm in the mood for :)

Diane said...

Oh Wow..
My all time favorite:
Agatha Christie

and then:

~Aaron Elkins - Gideon Oliver series.
~Laurell K Hamilton - Merry Gentry and then Anita Blake
~Kim Harrison - The Hollows
~Elizabeth Peters - Amelia Peabody
~Lincoln Child/Douglas Preston - Special Agent Pendergast
~James Rollins - Sigma Force
~Matthew Reilly - Jack West
~Jim Butcher - Dresden Files
~Brad Geagley - Detective Semerket
~Kathy Reichs
~Alex Archer - Rogue Angel

Harry Potter too.

Um...was there a limit?

Kristi said...

As a kid/tween I read The Dark is Rising (don't remember the author..will have to look those up again), Nancy Drew, Sweet Vally High, Cronicles of Narnia, LOTR (the first time)

Sometime in college I picked up the Wheel of Time and have been regretting it ever since (the books go progressively worse as they went on and I STILL want to finish it! arg!). Same with George R. R. Martin's Song of Fire and Ice. I may abandon that one (was NOT thrilled to have the series kill off 99% of the characters from the first chapter of book 1--there ought to be a rule about continuity in series or soemthing).

I re-read LOTR when the movies were coming out. I read Harry Potter. Loved it absolutely. I have Eldest sitting on a shelf waiting to be read--Eragon was very good and I hope that the series doesn't disappoint me like some others.

I'm currently reading Assassin's Quest by Robin Hobb--I am absolutely smitten with this series--am not disappointed by the direction, nor is it getting repetitive or letting the plot or character growth sag in books 2 and 3 like so many others. I highly highly highly recommend it! (A friend has the Tawny Man books lined up already to loan to me when I'm done...)

Jessica said...

Mark of the Lion, by
Francine Rivers.

Inmodify said...

Anne-Rice's Vampire Chronicles, but partial to Abrom Croix

Steve said...

Lots of great stories to add to my reading queue... Here are some of my favorites. Many aren't listed above:

-Master of the Five Magics (Lyndon Hardy) (and its 2 sequels)
-Sorcerer's Son (Phyllis Eisenstien) and sequel (3rd pending)
-Incarnations of Immortality (Piers Anthony) (7 books)
-Dragon Prince trilogy (Melanie Rawn)
-Dragon Star trilogy (Melanie Rawn) (continues stories of DP characters)
-Exiles (Melanie Rawn) (may she one day write book 3)
-Redwall (Brian Jacques) for lighter reading but great stories
-Forgotten Realms: Icewind Dale (R.A. Salvatore)

So much more, but thanks to all the authors for writing them, to all the agents for discovering them, and to all the publishers getting their works out into the world.

RMS said...

It's hard to choose just one!

1. The Toby Peters mysteries by Stuart Kaminsky for comforting me during a time of illness
2. The Mongo Mysteries by George C. Chesbro for characters I cared about and interesting ideas
3. The Miles Vorkosigan books by Lois McMaster Bujold for sheer fun

RMS said...

Oh, I want to add the original Dune trilogy too! (Can't believe I almost forgot that one.)

Michael said...

1. The Westmark series by Lloyd Alexander (Prydain too)
2. Masters of Rome by Colleen McCullough
3. The Chronicles of Thomas Covenant by Stephen Donaldson
4. A Song of Ice and Fire by George R. R. Martin

Yat-Yee said...

Middle grade books hold a special place in my heart. I write MG and I was at that age when I first got hooked on Enid Blyton. I haven't met anyone in the US who's read her so it's great to see her name pop up more than once here.

Others include Narnia, Hilary McKay's, and Jeff Stone's Five Ancestors.

Eric-Paul said...

Krist said:

Same with George R. R. Martin's Song of Fire and Ice. I may abandon that one (was NOT thrilled to have the series kill off 99% of the characters from the first chapter of book 1--there ought to be a rule about continuity in series or soemthing).

See, that's exactly what I loved about those books. Song of Ice and Fire has actual suspense... you never know exactly who is going to make it out alive.

Although I didn't really like the fourth book spending so much time with brand new characters. Oh well. The fifth book should be out later this year. Yippee!

Bruce Judisch said...

Francine Rivers' Mark of the Lion series, probably more than any other, pulled me into the Biblical historical fiction genre. Also enjoyed the Thoenes' Vienna Prelude series.

I dunno, I guess it's a history thing...

Wanda B. Ontheshelves said...

If anyone's interested:

Here's a link to an excerpt of "Then We Came to the End" -

It is a lengthy excerpt, certainly enough for you to determine if it's "your kind of thing."

I think it's great, lots of savage humor, uproarious and excruciating.

It made me think of the granola-type snack my dad kept in a jar on his desk - everyone helped themselves to it, and called it "cubicle crunch."

And then I had a temp job where I did data entry - they were researching the eye movements of drivers, and so while viewing videos, you had to enter the corresponding numbers into a database - 1 for a glance at the rearview mirror, 2 at the right side mirror, 3 at the left side mirror, etc.

Yes, I do have an MFA in poetry! Maybe they should put that in grad school brochures - listen, if you turn your nose up at an academic career, and think you're too good for teaching - how'd you like to score driver eye movements 8 hours a day? We thought that would get your attention...

I am taking 3 months off this summer from my current job, to do a final read-through/edit of my novel. Perhaps not the wisest move with "the price of milk and eggs these days," but wisdom and literary ambition are kind of polar opposites, aren't they?

Kate H said...

Oh dear . . . somewhere between Harry Potter, Narnia, and Anne of Green Gables. That's not counting my favorite mystery series, which I consider a different animal because while the detective remains the same from book to book, each volume is a self-contained plot.

Wanda B. Ontheshelves said...

Re: Serials:

Nancy Drew
Little House on the Prairie
Wizard of Oz ??
Dune ??

It's been a while.

Steve Rush said...

I enjoy Dean Koontz's Odd Thomas and James Patterson's Alex Cross.

Christine Carey said...

Candace Haven's Bronwyn the Witch series - they're like candy =)

Anonymous said...

Edgar Rice Burroughs' Tarzan & Martian books and R. E. Howard's Conan books. James Bond (only the Ian Fleming written). As a child;
Wizard of Oz. Crais' Elvis Cole; Connelly's Harry Bosch. Ellroy's L.A. Quartet; Hillerman's Leaphorn & Chee. Lee Child's Jack Reacher. I could go on and on.

Samurai_cow said...

Charlie Huston's Joe Pitt Vampire series. Vampires + Noir + Detectives = A damn fine read.

Also, Then We Came to the End was very good. One of the few times you read a story and every time you get comfortable with its humor, it smacks you creepiness.

Di Francis said...

Anne Bishop's The Black Jewels


wickerman said...

I am very much a fan of the Del Rey collections of R E Howard's various work (Conan, Bran Mak Morn, etc..) though I don;t know if they qualify as a series...

I am starting Erickson's Malazan series and enjoying it...

Anonymous said...

I can safely add this at the very end of a humongous list. My fav series is my own. How can any writer with a series think otherwise? Don't you have any confidence in your own work?

I don't comment under my blogger id any longer. Allows me to be honest on agent sites. Sucking up is tiresome.

Tom Burchfield said...

Richard Stark's "Parker" series Richard Stark aka Donald Westlake.

Lisa McMann said...

Armistead Maupin's TALES OF THE CITY series.
So freaking clever and funny.

Anonymous said...

anon 4:29,

I would mention my own mystery series, but only one is written so far and is still in the polishing stage. I'll let you know when it comes out. :o) (call me optimistic, but I believe in it!)

Kathleen said...

Thursday Next by Jasper Fforde

Joseph L. Selby said...

I posted a trilogy previously. Going with series, I can't believe I forgot to mention Diana Gaboldon's Outlander series. Those are a good time.

adam said...

The Word and Void series by Terry Brooks. Awesome protagonist!

Donalyn said...

Hmmm, asking a fantasy fan to list their favorite series is a tricky business. There are so many great fantasy YA series out there now!

Of course, Harry Potter is the top of the list.
Next would be the Percy Jackson series by Rick Riordan.
Third would have to be Artemis Fowl by Eoin Colfer

annerallen said...

Thanks, Lisa McMann, for adding Armistead Maupin's Tales of the City: laugh out loud, page-turning, popcorn-for-the-brain fun. Bet you can't read just one!

Alex Fayle said...

Two of my favourite series of all time are The Riddlemaster of Hed series by Patrica A. McKillip and The Chronicles of Tornor by Elizabeth A. Lynn.

Both series are from the 1980s but they hold up.

This past year I finally dove into the Discworld series and have such a fun time reading them as well.

Janiss said...

I'm obviously not reading your blog enough because I just saw this and it's two entries down.

My current favorite series is Erin Hunter's Warriors books. Keep in mind that I am an adult female and probably old enough to have kids that are age-appropriate to read Warriors (10 to 14 age range, for those who don't know these books). But I'm addicted, and embarrassingly so. I actually show up at the bookstore the day a new Warriors book comes out, and devour them in a day or so.

Yes, I do read grown-up books too. And even occasionally books that are not about cats.

Beth said...

Historical fiction: The Outlander series by Diana Gabaldon.

Fantasy: Song of Ice and Fire by George RR Martin; the Merlin Trilogy by Mary Stewart; any series by Kate Elliott

SF: The Miles Vorkosigan books by Lois McMaster Bujold

Mystery: the Falco series by Lindsay Davis

Contemporary: the Father Tim stories by Jan Karon

Anonymous said...

Definitely Twilight, Uglies, and Daughters of the Moon from when I was a young teen.

stepping over the junk said...

Little House on the Prairie. I read it when I was a kid and now I am reading it to my own children.

jbrian said...

Favorite series? Well, not in any particular order are the ones that have held my interest:
Anita Blake Series by Laurell K. Hamilton
Jim Chee/Joe Leaphorn series by Tony Hillerman
and the Sevenwaters Trilogy and Bridei Chronicles by Juliet Marillier

I guess those appease my cravings for the fright/flatfoot/fantasy genres.

zakstar said...

Lee Child's Jack Reacher novels are great.

Paullina Simons has a trilogy that was like Gone with the Wind meets Communist Russia: The Bronze Horseman, The Bridge to Holycross, The Summer Garden

Anonymous said...

Not sure that this counts as it is really just one long masterpiece (the critic Walter Benjamin compared it Michaelangelo's Sistine Chapel in terms of magnitude and magnificence) but Marcel Proust's IN SEARCH OF LOST TIME.

Reading just the first volume is like reading just the first part of ANNA KARENNINA. Reading just one of the middle volumes is even worse. So do yourself a favor and take as long as you need and read it all. (Then reread it, as you'll probably want to.)

And, though this goes against the foul current of our Self-help culture, do NOT read some book like HOW PROUST CAN CHANGE YOUR LIFE in order to find out how it can change your life! A book like that is so radically opposed to one of the integral themes (of subjectivity) that Proust insists upon throughout his great work that to write a book like that is to demonstrate beyond doubt that you have not understood a word of Proust.

(Proust consistently mocks characters who found their own experiences upon the experience of others.)

Trust yourself and dive in!

Sherry G said...

This is a great question. My favorite series of all time, I can’t think of any other series in its genre that even holds a candle to it would be Frank Herbert’s Dune series. My second favorite series is Anna Rice’s Lives of the Mayfair Witches, only she can make incest sexy. My third favorite series is Sue Harrison’s Ivory Carver Trilogy with a girl named Kiin that means “who”, there’s nothing sadder than being named who. My fourth series is Jean Auel’s Clan of the Cave Bears, don’t watch the movie by the same name—ever, you’ll end up missing out on the books.

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