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Finishing Fantasy – A True Fantasy

For a long period of my life I was under the impression that historical fiction was my favourite genre – but having read a lot of fantasy lately I’ve come to realise I was wrong. The ability of my imagination to be creative peaks when I’m reading about made-up worlds. But do you know what’s odd? Until earlier this year (unless you count the Twilight saga last year) I’d never once finished a fantasy series. Stand alone novels yes, sagas no. It’s peculiar really because a lot of my favourite books are from these sagas (namely the first books of course), but I digress.

His Dark Materials: 2. Harry Potter (of which I have the first four): 2. The Chronicles of Narnia: 6. David Edding’s The Belgariad, consisting of 5 books, which I read in the first few months of this year is that first series I said I’ve finished. Heck knows, I’m in my 20’s – this paragraph makes me depressed!

Today I realised exactly why I had this trouble and it is thus: the endings of the majority of series are comprised of battles. In battles there are a lot of different things to remember, different legions etcetera. I also had trouble accepting the simultaneous death of many characters. A lot of authors like to kill off their characters in battles at the end of a book. Then there’s the fact of the actual battle itself: why do authors always fall back on the battle idea?

As a child I just didn’t want that. Reading became a chore. As a child I would end up with many books on the go to lessen the burden, but I rarely finished any of them, tending to keep adding instead. I had 10 books on the go at one stage. In The Chronicles Of Narnia‘s case it was a little different, I became bored of the ever-changing line up of characters and the afore unimportant cousin and his friend didn’t appeal.

I will finish all the series I’m currently reading (there are four), it’s my mission, but even today it’s a crazily difficult task!



May 13, 2010, 9:39 pm

I know exactly how you feel! Not only about the battles, but about so many series! It can’t be THAT hard to write just one book with a full story arc. I am also making an effort to get through all the series I am wading in the middle of. However, I am doing that so that I can start MORE series once I’m through with these ;-) I have the habit of starting tons of series, and I’d just like to feel accomplished and finish a few before starting yet another. I already finished one trilogy! Whew!

Charlie: Yes, too many series are too similar and in so many series each book has a battle in it. As much as I liked The Belgariad that was a failing there. I’m not actively pursuing more series like you, but there are plenty I’ve got left to read once I’ve finished these, and I understand your happiness in finishing one of them entirely! They can be such a slog to get through, finishing it is such a relief!

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