The Struggle of Waiting for Book Releases

The book community has been going crazy over the recent book release of Lady Midnight by Cassandra Clare. While I’m also excited, I couldn’t help but think about how the people who read it immediately are going to need to wait over a year for the next book in the trilogy. Then, an additional year for the last book.

It’s a struggle that many book lovers face with their favorite authors, their favorite series, or even an extremely hyped upcoming series release. It’s a choice that readers have to make – read it now for that immediate satisfaction even though it’ll be painful waiting for the next release, or save it for later and read it when more books (or even the whole series) are out.

 

Here’s an anecdote (about losing interest in a series because of long new book release dates) from my experience:

Back when I was in high school, I read Daughter of Smoke & Bone by Laini Taylor a few months after it came out. For those of you who don’t know, Daughter of Smoke & Bone is a very popular Young Adult fantasy trilogy. I’m proud to say that I read it before the hype started and everyone else started reading it. It was an amazing book and I loved it, but I had to wait months for the second book in the trilogy to be released. Looking back on it now, it actually wasn’t that long – a few months is short compared to a lot of other release dates. However at the time, I was focused on getting instant gratification from reading the next book, and it was a large struggle for me. The week after the second book was released, I devoured it, and was then of course left with wanting to know what happened next, without the last book even having a release date. The third book ended up being released two years after that.

What happened in those two years? My hype and adoration for the series went on a gradual decline, and still to this day, I haven’t read the last book of the series. It’s on my to-read list though! It really is. But I haven’t read it because at the point when the book was released, I didn’t care that much, and I had forgotten a lot of what happened in the first two books. If, I mean when, I read the last book in that trilogy, I’ll probably need to re-read the first two books. However, I really dislike re-reading books just so that I can remember enough to read a new book release… So I might put this off for a bit longer.

As a side note, does anyone have recommendations on becoming up-to-date with the first few books of a series so that it’s easier to read a new release? I’ve tried reading summaries, but they tend to miss out on some details, and I feel like I miss important refrences while reading the new book in the series.

Other series that I’ve put off because of long release dates include:
The Mortal Instruments by Cassandra Clare,
The Infernal Devices by Cassandra Clare,
Divergent by Veronica Roth,
The Premonition by Amy A. Bartol,
The Archers of Avalon by Chelsea Fine, and
The 5th Wave by Rick Yancey.
This list is non-exhaustive, because I’m sure there are series that I’m forgetting to add.

 

Don’t even get me started on book release dates that are pushed back a couple of months. Then a few more months. Then eventually a year. All bookworms have experienced this at one point or another, and it’s always extremely frustrating. I personally believe that the author and publisher should be more conservative with the release date initially, then surprise the readers with an earlier release date if things progress smoothly. Otherwise, fans become upset, and some people lose interest.

Then, there are book series that take this to an extreme and don’t have a new release for years. What comes to mind immediately for me is The Host by Stephenie Meyer. Yes, the author of the Twilight Series. I read The Host back in high school around seven years ago, and I remember really enjoying it. Since then, a movie adaptation came out in 2012 and Stephenie Meyer said in 2013 that she was working on a sequel [source], with the story probably becoming a trilogy. However, at the end of 2015 she published Life and Death: Twilight Reimagined, which is basically the first book of Twilight, just with gender reversals of Bella and Edward. So essentially, Stephenie Meyer created an unasked-for version of Twilight, while not saying a peep about The Host sequel. A lot of fans are upset, which is apparent on the Goodreads page of the sequel, and overall the fandom has died down, which I think is really sad.

Another example of the author putting off the release date is The Kingkiller Chronicle Series by Patrick Rothfuss. It’s a trilogy that is apparently fantastic – I don’t know much about it since it’s on my to-read list and I’d prefer to start reading it without knowing the premise of the story. The first two books are out, but the third one hasn’t been released for a while. The third book has apparently been pushed back five years, and there’s still not a solid release date for this book. Similarly to the Goodreads sequel page for The Host, people are frustrated and anxiously awaiting the release of this third book on its Goodreads sequel page. Apparently, there are fans who have been waiting since 2011 for this last book of the trilogy to be released.

 

As you can probably tell at this point, I’m very pro-waiting when it comes to reading books that are part of a series. I’d much rather wait a year or so to read a really good book if most of the series is already released, than to read them as they come out.

 

It’s because of it being so hard to be left with cliffhangers and wait for more to come out, that
I’m holding off on reading the following books until the next book in the series is released:

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I’m not necessarily waiting for all of the books in a series to be released before I start (or continue in some cases) reading a series. I’d just prefer it if the next book were out before I started it, in case there’s a cliffhanger. I’ll probably start reading the books that I mentioned a couple of weeks before the release date of the next book in their respective series.

 

That all being said, sometimes I lose the struggle of holding back from reading a certain book or starting a new series. Therefore,
I’ll probably be reading the following books before the next in the series is released:

  • The Name of the Wind, by Patrick Rothfuss
    (I’ve heard fantastic things about this, so I’m going to start this soon… I know that the trilogy hasn’t had a release date forย years, but I can’t wait too long to read this.)
  • Rebel of the Sands, by Alwyn Hamilton
    (This book was just released, and it’s the first of a trilogy… So the next couple of books won’t be out for a while. I don’t want to be waiting to read this book for over a year for the next book to be released and 2-3 years for the whole trilogy to be out, so I’ll be starting this book soon.)
  • Passenger, by Alexandra Bracken
    (The next and final book is coming out in 2017, but I don’t think I’ll wait because there are mixed reviews on this, so I want to see where I stand – it’s possible that I won’t even want to read the next book.)

It’s hard for me to wait for new book releases. It really is. However, there are times when I can’t necessarily wait for the next book release before starting a book series because of the reasons that I listed above. Additionally now that I’m a book blogger and write book reviews, I realize that I’ll need to start series early on… I’m not looking forward to it (although part of me is super happy to be able to read amazing book sooner), but we’ll see how that goes.

 

What is your perspective on this issue? Do you prefer to put off books to read until it’s closer to the release date of the next book (like me), or do you prefer to read a highly anticipated read as soon as possible?

29 thoughts on “The Struggle of Waiting for Book Releases

  1. Lois

    I love this topic of discussion because I have put off reading so many series, The Winner’s Trilogy, because of the wait I’d have for the next book. Typically I’m okay with waiting a year and I think this is mainly due to the fact that I actually enjoy re-reading books, or at least reading the last third of it or something.

    However, a wait more than a year is definitely likely to make my excitement for the book dwindle. I think if you’re going to release a book in a 2 year or more time frame you have to find some way to keep your readers interested like provide a short story, q&a’s or something. I mean look at the marketing for Illuminae, the buzz surrounding that book was so huge because they were great at promoting it and generating an interest in the book.

    I honestly can’t remember anything about The Host. It’s been so long since I read the book haha. I feel like when you announce a plan to write a sequel long after the first book is released part of me feels like they’re only doing it so they can capitalize on the success of the first book. Basically I have no plans to read it haha.

    1. Jorelene @ Page Chronicles

      Reading the last third of a book is an interesting way to get caught up with a series – I haven’t tried that! Do you ever find yourself lost or confused when you use that strategy?

      I completely agree that the author should do something in between long book releases to keep readers interested, such as providing a short story. I’m pretty sure that’s what Patrick Rothfuss tried to do with The Kingkiller Chronicles because he released a “Book 2.5” in 2014. However, his fans are still very upset because the release date of Book 3 is nowhere in sight.

      I’m not sure if I’d read the sequel of The Host if it came out. I really loved The Host back in high school, but that was in high school and now I’m graduating college in a couple of months. Obviously my reading tastes have changed in those years, so I feel like I might not like the sequel as much now than I would’ve if the sequel were released a few years back.

      1. Lois

        Sometimes I get confused, especially since it’s been a while since I read the book. Most of the time I end up re-reading the entire book but on other occasions I’ll skim read as well so I can remember the main plot points.

        I think the most frustrating part is not having a set release date because they can give us as many teasers as they like but if we don’t have a date how long do they expect the readers to hold on to the series.

        I was about 13/14 when I read The Host for the first time and I’m now fresh out of university and like you my reading tastes have changed and I just don’t see the appeal in the book anymore so it’s safe to say I’ll give it a pass haha. ๐Ÿ˜€

  2. edbucks16

    That’s a really tricky issue – I remember the excitement of reading Harry Potter as it came out, but the press enthusiasm certainly helped remind me of the key points from the previous book at the right time. I’d say that for pretty much all the other series, I’d rather wait and read them together (or at least two books in a row).

    1. Jorelene @ Page Chronicles

      The Harry Potter book releases was an exception for me too! I was one of those people who would pick up the book a couple of days after it was released, and read it within a week. I think that it was much easier to keep up-to-date with the previous Harry Potter books because, as you said, there was a huge hype around the series.

  3. Sya

    I am definitely the one who waited for all the books to be released first before starting the series. Currently I have two series that I’ve been wanting to read but just waiting for the third book to come out so that I can enjoy them in their entirety without waiting. ๐Ÿ™‚

  4. Stephanie Joanna

    I have to admit that I, dare I say, like sometimes having to wait to read the next book in a series. Whenever I really love a series I’m still going to love it a year or two later. But sometimes I’ll just have a really good reading experience and think that I loved the actual book, the wait is kind of a filter of sorts.

    1. Jorelene @ Page Chronicles

      The hardest thing I find about waiting though is forgetting details of previous books. How do you manage to remember the small and seemingly insignificant aspects of the series (that turn out to be important in later books) if you’ve waited for a new release years later?

  5. maryannniemczura

    Waiting allows you to practice patience as well. I used to get annoyed at traffic delays until I one day decided that it was a way for me to practice patience and to be creative in my mind. There is a reason for everything. Anticipation for what’s next is also cause for hope. While you wait, you can read and create. Happy writing and waiting.

  6. Alicia @hashtaglovebooks

    I loved reading this!! You have captured my thoughts perfectly, Jorelene! There used to be a time where I was only following like two series and so I would wait every year and my anticipation would only grow throughout the year! Now that I’ve become a bit more avid and especially because I’m a book blogger, I hate that feeling you get when you have to wait another year because your excitement declines. I’ll also often forget too because of the other books I’ll read through the year!

    1. Jorelene @ Page Chronicles

      Alicia!! I’m so glad you enjoyed this post! Yeah, I figured that this would be something that a lot of avid readers experience.

      You might already know this, but someone else in the comments just recommended this blog called Recaptains that does an amazing job at recapping books so that it’s easier to get caught up with them – I checked them out and I know that I’ll be using them when I need to be reminded of a book in the future! It should make it much easier to bring back those feelings of excitement and to remember important details.

  7. scaranpannoir

    I can totally relate to that XD I’ve been waiting for a lot of books, but for some reason, even if I forget what the title is, I’d know that I’ve been waiting for that particular book once I see it in a bookstore. That’s what happened when I was waiting for Magnus Chase by Rick Riordan when I finished reading the newly published the last book of Percy Jackson (like, two years ago… -v- How do I even still remember that… Probably because I just got into High School back then? Yep. Probably.)

    1. Jorelene @ Page Chronicles

      That’s a new level of waiting – forgetting that I’ve been waiting. Haha, I usually don’t remember a lot about the series if it gets to that point. Therefore if I want to read the new release, I would need to re-read the whole series. I tend to put off them off in those cases, unless everyone keeps raving about how great it is.

  8. Nicola

    I don’t usually bother waiting; I’m generally far too excited about a book to wait for the sequel, and if I enjoyed it enough to care about the sequel enough for it to make its way to the top of my TBR, then I don’t see rereading it as something I have to do to read the sequel, but something I “get” to do.

    1. Jorelene @ Page Chronicles

      That’s a really great mindset to be in! I should try adopting that… It’s just hard for me now because I have little time to read as it is since my last semester of college is so busy, so I’d prefer to use my free time to read a new book, rather than re-read a book. I should be able to do that more once I graduate though!

  9. Lauren Busser

    I am in an awkward, but perhaps envious position, I am just getting back to pleasure reading after spending a year neck deep in Gothic novels. I have been acquiring books gradually and while I like the idea of visiting series that have been published in its entirety, like Divergent, when I hear buzz about the ending not living up to the standards of the fandom I get turned off. In the end I would rather book as soon as it’s released or just know the release date and get a copy without listening to any hype.

    Recently, I read Oryx and Crake by Margaret Atwood and while I wasn’t sure that I LOVED the book. A couple of people on Instagram and one woman in a writing class I’ve been taking said that it was the weakest in the trilogy. Of course, this is book one so I figure if it’s the weakest it can only go up from here. What they didn’t do was give me any spoilers, which I appreciated, a lot!

    1. Jorelene @ Page Chronicles

      I would love to be able to just read popular books without the hype! I try to avoid hype whenever I’m unable to read a new release immediately, but I somehow come across it fairly often. It would be really great to be able to go into a new release without being influenced by what others have said about it. If a book is talked about too highly, I might have too high expectations and be let down when actually reading the book, and if a book is talked poorly about, I might just not end up reading it. It’s really a tough situation to be in.

      I just looked it up on Goodreads, and Oryx and Crake sounds so interesting! I added it to my TBR. Please post a review on the next two books once you get around to them!

      1. Lauren Busser

        I had the same problem with my recent review of Gone Girl!

        As for the Madaddam Series, I definitely will. I have to get through some of the books I acquired at a used book store’s closing sale first so I can make room on my shelf and then I will get them in the near future. The good thing about Oryx and Crake is that it does give you a sense of satisfaction when you finish reading it so that you can wait a bit before diving into the next book. Atwood rights some REALLY intense and thought provoking plots so it may be better with a slow digest.

  10. RoseRead

    I absolutely agree! I like to wait until several, if not all, of the books are out in a series before starting it. I am now in the Patrick Rothfuss waiting boat – the Kingkiller Chronicle is excellent (I’ve got reviews of them on my blog if you’re interested). It is absolute torture not even knowing the final release date yet!

    1. Jorelene @ Page Chronicles

      I’m really looking forward to reading the Kingkiller Chronicle! I’m not that excited about joining the waiting boat, but I don’t think I can put off reading it for an undetermined amount of time for the release date of the last book in the trilogy to be announced.

What are your thoughts?