Friday, June 7, 2013

Serial Killer

In my ongoing attempt to read a book a week this year, I’m falling horribly behind. I’m currently reading a book I really want to continue, but I keep putting it down after a few pages because I accidentally read the third book in the series first, and now, reading Book 1, I already know the character I’m meeting has died horribly somewhere along the way. Every time this character does something endearing, or the main character shows how much he’s falling for him, I remember how miserable the MC ends up later on because of his loss.

I hate spoilers, and reading ahead is the worst kind of spoiler to me. I know people who read the last page of a book first so they know what’s going to happen. And I’ve been tempted a few times, if a book has me really on edge (which is another reading dilemma I’ve had this year), but I just can’t do it. If I know what’s going to happen, I have a hard time enjoying the story. I mean, why would I want to know exactly how Voldemort will be defeated in The Deathly Hallows and who’s going to die along the way before I’ve even met Harry Potter?

I don’t even like to know what’s going to happen when I’m writing. I’m a “pantser.” I want to experience the excitement and suspense the same way my readers will. And as I discovered when I tried outlining, knowing exactly how a story’s going to play out completely kills my interest.

The Armies of Heaven, the final book in my House of Arkhangel’sk trilogy, comes out at the end of this month. I’ve been careful to try let each story stand on its own in case someone picks up the books out of order, but I’m really hoping that readers will start at the beginning, with The Fallen Queen. Some series can be read in any order, but a fantasy trilogy is meant to be read as a complete saga, where the main character’s journey takes place over all three books. That’s how this one was written. If readers start with the ending, they’re going to miss out on the character relationships developed along the way—and on some hot demon sex. Trust me. Start with Book 1.

The Armies of Heaven is available for preorder from:
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | iBooksKobo | Powell’s

Are you a last-page-peeker or do you share my literary OCD? Does it ruin a series for you if you read them out of order?

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