As a volunteer at my tiny local library (hi, Alida!), I’m privy to the host of new (and old) books that flow in and out through our doors. Of course, with the wealth of information online, most anyone can stay abreast of the goings-on involving a favorite author. But what I really like is discovering an author who has a series of books involving one or two characters or even a family of characters. It’s like one novel simply can’t contain all the history and angst for all the characters, so it has to be spread out amongst several novels. I LOVE IT! Only one problem. Once I start with the first book I simply MUST read all of them. In order. One after another. Heaven help me if I can’t get my hands on one of the serials. Or even harder, when the author isn’t finished with the series and you just KNOW it’s going to be a looonng time before the next book. Did I say that waiting is not my good point? That’s when I fall back on some tried-and-true series to re-read until that waiting-to-die-for book comes out.
One of my favorite series, The Chesapeake Bay books by Nora Roberts, is a case in point. It doesn’t hurt that I lived for 23 years in Southern suburban Maryland and made many trips to Easton and Ocean City and all points in between. The Bay is just gorgeous. Familiarity with the area always adds a little thrill of pleasure when I read the books. So, I have to confess, I spent time this week and read the whole series – again – and found myself actually missing that area and wishing I could have met the Quinn brothers along with Ray and Stella and the dogs – oh, especially Foolish! It took me three days to read the four books and when I turned the last page of the 4th novel, I gave a big sigh, and said, I’ll be seeing you, again – someday soon!
Of course, I’m not dissing stand-alone novels and I’ve read many of those by many more authors, including Nora Roberts, and enjoyed them immensely. But it’s nice to know that the connection you’ve made with a character, even if it’s in your mind, will be carried on in the next book, and if you’re very lucky, more books after that!