Stack Overflow: Get Hooked On a Series

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Stack Overflow: Hook On a SeriesWhen I first started reading as a kid, I cut my proverbial teeth on the Hardy Boys and Nancy Drew books. They were pulp detective stories, and there were a lot of them.

I eventually graduated to other series: the Star Wars fiction of the early ’90s was some of the earliest series fiction I read. I also got into epic fantasy, which is known for being series-based, and preferred science fiction stories that spanned over multiple books (like the Wing Commander fiction).

Here are some of the series that I’m enjoying, on my own or with my daughters today. One of them I started way back in the early ’90s!

The Owl Diaries

The Owl Diaries are part of Scholastic’s Branches book line, aimed at newly independent readers. I picked up the first and second Diaries books for my oldest daughter and she loved them.

The series follows Eva Wingdale and her friend Lucy as they go on adventures. In the first book, Eva is organizing a spring festival but may be in over her head. In the second book, Eva thinks she’s seen a ghost! Or has she?

Unlike a traditional chapter book, which changes formats to the more standard text-only layout of a novel with only occasional illustrations, Diaries meshes the longer text of a chapter book with the side-by-side artwork that is common in early childhood books. This creates a fun, eye-catching layout that, in my opinion, is one of the things that caught-up my daughter and kept her reading.

Old Man’s War

The Old Man’s War series is one of my favorite science fiction series. It combines serious adventure with light-hearted fun without beating the reader over the head with the scientific details of faster-than-light travel, or cloned human bodies, or in-brain computers.

The End of All Things is the latest addition to the OMW series, arriving on shelves on Tuesday. It’s a direct sequel to the events in The Human Division and deals with the split in humanity (Earth versus the Colonial Defense Forces) and the on-going attacks on human and alien outposts.

Shannara

The world of Shannara has spanned decades in our world and millennia in Four Lands. Terry Brooks has written a number of books, some originally unconnected (from a reader perspective), that now carry our world through an apocalypse and into the world of Shannara.

The current running trilogy is The Defenders of Shannara (book two, The Darkling Child, is now on sale), starring Paxon Leah. He has inherited his ancestor’s sword, which is storied to be the magical blade that once helped protect the Four Lands. When Paxon’s sister is abducted, he must go to her rescue, where he discovers there might just be some truth to the legendary blade and his ancestry.

Shannara is a series that I always find time to read and re-read. I always learn something new from it, and always have a good time with old and new friends along the way. I’m eagerly awaiting the day when I can share these with my daughters.

There are mine; what series are you hooked on? Share below!

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4 thoughts on “Stack Overflow: Get Hooked On a Series

  1. Great article, I always enjoy these posts to see what I might be able to promote with the family and myself.
    2 questions:
    1. How old is your oldest daughter? Mine is 7 but is reading chapter books (Boxcar Children, Magic Treehouse, Ivy & Bean, etc…) and enjoys series books. Owl Diaries sounds like something right up her alley.
    2. I am currently enjoying the Legend of Drizzt series (through Halflings Gem right now) and have heard of the Shannara series as another D&D world series. I would assume they have similar “feel” and environment. Have you read the Drizzt series? What are your thoughts between the two series if so?

    1. Hi Brad!

      1. How old is your oldest daughter? Mine is 7 but is reading chapter books (Boxcar Children, Magic Treehouse, Ivy & Bean, etc…) and enjoys series books. Owl Diaries sounds like something right up her alley.

      My oldest is almost seven (just a few months shy of her birthday). She reads some regular chapter books and I wanted to keep her reading this summer, so I grabbed the Owl Diaries to see what they’d be like. I’m glad I did.

      2. I am currently enjoying the Legend of Drizzt series (through Halflings Gem right now) and have heard of the Shannara series as another D&D world series. I would assume they have similar “feel” and environment. Have you read the Drizzt series? What are your thoughts between the two series if so?

      I’ve read Salvatore’s work, though not the newer stuff. Personally, I enjoy both writers. Shannara is on a grander scale than Drizzt, in terms of plot and world building (think Lord of the Rings type fiction). Drizzt is more swashbuckling adventure fantasy, more action and less world building. There’s room to enjoy both, so give Shannara a try.

      Hope this helps!

      Cheers,

      Tim

  2. I recommend the Redwall series by Brian Jacques. I greatly enjoyed reading these as an adult and can’t wait to get my granddaughter (age 8) started.

  3. Thanks for the quick follow up, I will definitely get the Owl Diaries on the list as well as check out the Shannarah and Redwall series.

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