All good things must come to an end. And so over 2013, readers have seen a number of very popular dystopian series publish their final books. Some of these concluding novels have been applauded, while others have been described as disappointing. It must be a difficult thing to bring all the plot threads together in a way that satisfies all readers (I was never happy with who Katniss ends up with in Mockingjay).
I am going to run through some of my favourite series of the past three years with links to the concluding books on Goodreads for you to see how well they are doing. I will start with Across the Universe by Beth Revis, who was the first to publish the third book, way back in January 2013.
The three books are :
Across the Universe (my review from 2011)
A Million Stars (my quick review posted at Goodreads that didn’t make it to this blog)
Shades of Earth ( a must-read for me these summer holidays – can’t believe I haven’t read it yet! Wish this was our cover.)
Another series I started, but never finished is The Chemical Gardens trilogy by Lauren de Stefano. The three books are:
Wither (my review on Goodreads. This one had my favourite of the three covers)
Fever (my even shorter review that explains why I never finished the series)
Sever (which I never bought. It came out in February 2013)
On the other hand, I had high expectations for the conclusion to Delirium by Lauren Oliver and am glad to report it didn’t disappoint. The third one came out in March 2013. My reviews at Goodreads are so short, they aren’t worth linking. But there are lots of other people who raved about all three books. One amazing thing about this series is all the short stories that Oliver wrote in between the novels. They serve a couple of purposes – they keep people interested and they offer glimpses into secondary characters which enrich the world building and the series. The three books are:
Requiem (third book came out in March 2013)
It was a long wait then from March to October, when the next lot of concluding books were published.
For me the most consistently enjoyable trilogy is the Legend series by Marie Lu. Admittedly, I haven’t yet read the final books of the next three I plan to include, but so far, based on what I have seen, I think this will stay true. Lu got it all right – the characters remain noble and committed to their cause; the narrative stays within the bounds of authenticity, and the climax and subsequent conclusion are better than just satisfactory. The three books are:
Legend (my review from 2011 on this blog)
Prodigy (one of the few books where I gave more stars to book 2 than book 1)
Champion (lots of reviews on Goodreads where it’s averaging 4 and a half stars out of 5, and it only came out on November 5 2013)
Divergent was the surprise hit when it was first published in 2011. The film version reaches our screens next year. Veronica Roth followed up with Insurgent and finally we have Alliegant. Apparently, there is a lot of disappointment about the final book. The word ‘boring’ is being bandied about, and I don’t think there’s anything worse for a book to be called. The three books are:
Divergent (lots of reviews on Goodreads)
Insurgent (my own explanation of why I wasn’t totally won over)
Alliegant (am yet to read it. Soon hopefully)
The last three I want to mention don’t really fit into my original group. Their final books won’t be out till 2014, but they are really early 2014, so I am just going to ignore my own rules and list them as well.
Under the Never Sky by Veronica Rossi was followed by up Through the Ever Night and Into the Still Blue will come out in January 2014 (blue looks like the preferred colour of covers at the moment).
I first read Shatter Me by Tahereh Mafi in November 2011, and maybe by that time I had my fill of dystopia, but actually I got sucked into this one too. I do hate the cover we have in the library, and thankfully there is a better option for newer readers. The second one, Unravel Me has got a great average score, but when I read my own review, I wonder if I will make an effort with number three, Ignite Me, which will be published in February 2014.
While I absolutely loved Daughter of Smoke and Bone, I found the second book, Days of Blood and Starlight both gruelling and depressing. But the writing is so luminescent, that I am sure I will have to read the third book, Dreams of Gods and Monsters. Plus those covers! So beautiful.
I think this is my longest blog post ever. Never again! It took three days. Back to just one book, one review.