By August, I was getting into the thick of it. I’d remembered how much fun reading was and the more that I did, the more that I wanted to do.
And one of my favourite things about reading then were the series of books that I followed. Well, I say followed, but I didn’t read as sequentially then as I do now. (That obsession took some years to develop.)
I read randomly from series: randomly, but regularly (I always re-read my favourites) and loyally. But that loyalty often translated into repeated exposures to treasured volumes rather than methodically exploring entire series.
Sometimes this was a matter of accident. I didn’t particularly love the Bobbsey Twins books, but sometimes I would run out of books where we were staying on holiday, and I would have to read what was there. Other family members had some Bobbsey Twins, Happy Hollisters, and Trixie Belden books on their shelves. So, I read them. And I re-read some of them too.
Sometimes it was a matter of adoration. I loved Ramona the Pest. I re-read it so many times and for so many years that eventually I began to conceal my re-reading of it; I knew I was supposed to be liking books for older kids (and I did) but I still loved Ramona. Even if (especially because) she was such a pest.
Sometimes it was a conjunction of accident and adoration. I loved The Three Investigators series but I only had one of them myself (The Mystery of Skeleton island); I would borrow whichever ones I could find at the library, which meant that I read some of them many times and others only once. (The libraries of my childhood did not have the hold systems that I rely upon so often now.)
I never did read the whole series, so my favourites were chosen from the handful of titles that I was lucky to find on the library shelves, and my wider affection was for the three boys and their crime-solving ways. Many of the series that I loved as a girl remained unfinished, for one reason or another.
This month, I’m sinking into series. I’ve been browsing in the stacks of the city libraries (exploring some branches for the first time) and making the reading lists that I didn’t make when I was a girl reading randomly. I didn’t request any of these: I went to individual branches and searched the shelves until I’d assembled the perfect book stack. And then I read, from start to finish.
Because what else is there to do in the summertime?
What series did you love to read when you were young?
Did you (or DO you) tend to leave series unfinished?