It’s been a long time since I’ve picked up a book series. I remember through middle and high school the total investment I would have in certain series, most notably Harry Potter and The Lord of the Rings. There was a specific joy in finishing a book and wanting to immediately to read the next one. In the case of Harry Potter where I would have to wait for the next book release, the anticipation and hype was almost as fun as reading the books themselves. It happened slowly and without my noticing, really, that I basically stopped reading book series. I think the joy and anticipation of reading a series was replaced by TV shows. The similar anticipation was funneled into new seasons of TV shows.
Furthermore, well-written and literary adult fiction seems to rarely come in the form of a series. I don’t really know why that it is, I’ve just noticed this trend. But this changed this last week when I picked up My Brilliant Friend by Elena Ferrante—the first in a four book series about a friendship between two women in post-War Italy. I work at a bookstore and these books are one of our top sellers, furthermore most of my fellow employees have read the series and all of them who have read it, loved it. My interest was piqued and I decided to give it a try. I was not disappointed.
I’ve only read the first book, but I was swept up into this world that I knew so little about by unique and fascinating characters—characters that I could see spending the course of three more books with. The story doesn’t have magic or a “Chosen One” as the series books in my youth did. It has small drama, pertaining to love, friendship, family, but these are realities I feel deeply nowadays. It is just as much of
a page-turner, which is the beauty of the series book. It can reignite a love of reading that you didn’t even realized had started to wane. I’m not just enjoying the read, I can’t stop reading and I can’t wait to start the next one.
What are some other literary fiction series books that you would recommend?