Wait! What?

I’ve been on a reading kick the last few weeks. Whenever I’m not working, I’m either reading or listening to a book. Because I’m hip deep in writing SF, I’ve been reading UF. This has given me a chance to catch up with one of my favorite indie UF authors. The problem? The series I was reading ended when it really needed another book or two to tie up all the loose ends. Frustration abounds and I find myself wanting to write the author and find out why they did it that way.

Ending a series is never easy. You always worry if you are doing it at the right time. Usually, the problem turns out to be a series should have been ended long before the author finally accepted it. It is rare–at least in my experience–to come across a series that ended too soon.

In this particular case, the author tied up the major conflict surrounding main character but left so many of the other conflicts that fed into the major one hanging. In fact, as I look back, what looked like the major conflict really wasn’t, not when you look a the big picture. Sure, we saw the MC get to deal with the person who had been dogging their every step and trying to kill them, but the causation for those actions still existed.

In fact, much of the problems the MC fought against for the length of series still existed and loved ones and friends were still in danger.

I don’t know about anyone else, but I want to know what happens next. Does the situation straighten out so the good guys win? Who else will die in the process? Will anyone die? Will the MC manage to come out of it alive and well or will it leave the MC dead or worse?

Because I’m still trying to process how I feel about the sudden ending of the series, I haven’t reviewed any of the books involved. Nor will I identify the book/series/author here. I guess this is sort of me grousing about how I feel let down. I know the author doesn’t owe me anything, but I want more.

More, I tell you.

I can name a number of series I feel went on too long. I’m sure you can as well. But it is rare for me to think a series ended too soon. Then I realized this isn’t a new feeling where this author is concerned. They have another series I felt the same way about. The only thing is with that particular series, I felt that way because I liked the characters so much I didn’t want to say goodbye to them. This time, however, I felt cheated because circumstances and situations I’d watched develop over the course of the series, things the MC and company worked to fix or overcome were simply left hanging. As a reader, I know the MC is still in danger as are their friends and family. The real bad guys are still out there.

Worse, a plot twist introduced at the beginning of the last book, one the author kept coming back to during the book and even mentioned at the end of it, was never resolved. That plot twist alone deserves its own book or two.

So color me frustrated and disappointed.

It also makes me understand why so many readers won’t start a series until it is finished. (Yes, I am about to start the final draft on the next Sword of Arelion book).

Have you ever run into this on a series you’ve enjoyed reading?

Featured Image by StockSnap from Pixabay

10 Comments

  1. I’ve certainly run into the ‘finished, but it continues’ syndrome several times with space war series. Sometimes authors defeat an attacker conclusively and then promptly create a new threat out of thin air simply to milk fans.

  2. I usually get tired of a series before it officially ends, so I can’t say as I’ve been in your predicament. I stuck with the Dresden Files series until book 11 when the end ticked me off and I never got over it, even though Butcher wrote more. I stuck with ;The Cat Who…” mystery series longer, but then the writer took the MC to a hippy-dippy place and I lost the connection. I did get all the way through the StarDoc SF series and while other readers were pissed about the way it ended, I thought she wrapped it up nicely.

    I can’t sustain interest in most series too long – even the ones I write. One I wrapped up in 4 books. The other ended at 3. I’ve been asked to write more and I guess I could, if I really tried. If I did, it’d have to be a different arc, because I’m done with the original stories.

    1. There are very few series I have followed all the way through. Part of it is because it takes so frigging long for a series to develop if it comes from a trad publisher. Part is because too often the series stumbles and falters along the way. If there is more than one book that I have trouble finishing, I tend to give up on the series. Still, I really wish certain other authors would make sure they tie off all the main plot lines before they end a series.

  3. Most of the series I’ve read that just stopped were because the author either died or otherwise became unable to write anymore. However, one series that ended but left me with lingering questions was the Safehold series by David Weber.

  4. I tended not to stick with series longer than trilogies. They were too hard to get my hands on when I was on active duty and reading dead tree in the Land Before ebooks.

    I got burned too often when a series had books 1-3 then book 6 or 7 available but 4 and 5 were no where to be found. Eventually I gave up on long series

    1. Same here, although I find myself following longer series now from a few indie authors because almost all my reading is now e-books.

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