Hat Trick!

For me, the very best kind of series isn’t a series at all.  It’s a trilogy.  Long enough to draw you in without being so long as to drag on.  It takes a certain kind of talent (and usually a whole lot of careful crafting and planning) to write a truly great trilogy.  It requires precision and choice that often seems lacking in a series (come on, how many series books have you read that didn’t seem to be going anywhere except to the next installment).  I love the completion, the finality, the actual existence of a finite story arc. So this March, the third month, I’ll feature some authors who have achieved a literary hat trick…three great books making a stellar trilogy.

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4 Responses to Hat Trick!

  1. Ms. Yingling says:

    This is a good way to look at it. Once a series gets beyond five books, I start to get kind of annoyed, and the students do stop reading. Sigh. Three books is a good number for a series.

  2. Mrs.N says:

    It’s interesting, there are the uber-long series books that will satisfy the elementary reader to no end (Junie B., Magic Tree House, Rainbow Fairies, Series of Unfortunate Events), because they crave the consistency and comfort of reading something predictable. But then for the well-written grab-you-and-hold-you books that become a series (Jacky Faber, Mysterious Benedict Society), what a terrible, terrible disappointment. I can’t even read the Jacky books anymore because they just drag and drag and drag. I stopped after 2 Benedict books because they just keep going. If he finishes it out in 5 I might go back, but I do worry about it. Also of concern, Tom Angleberger’s Origami Yoda series. I loved the first book. Loved it! But now there are 5 plus a guide to doodling…”sigh” is right.

    • larkhome says:

      Wait, I thought the Mysterious Benedict Society was a trilogy. The story seemed pretty much done and tidied up after TMBS and the Prisoner’s Dilemma. There’s a fourth book, The Extraordinary Education of Nicholas Benedict, but it’s a prequel, about Mr. Benedict at age 9, and I did like that one very much. It feels sort of…Wolves of Willoughby Chase-y, I suppose. British orphans and school stories kind of mashed together.

      But I totally agree on Jacky Faber. Urg.

  3. Mrs.N says:

    I promise to rescind all my condemnations if Trenton Lee Stewart is done with it. I swear.

    Also, in case anyone is interested, one of the most painful examples of not stopping at the end is Megan Whalen Turner’s thief series. Possibly one of the best trilogies ever written. But then she went and tacked on the fourth book. Why?? WHY???

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