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  • Sunday, November 05, 2006

    JAYNE'S CUNNING PLAN TO LAUNCH A NEW SERIES

    Okay, those of you who know me well are aware that I write romantic-suspense under three different names: JAYNE ANN KRENTZ (contemporary romantic-suspense), AMANDA QUICK (historical romantic-suspense) and JAYNE CASTLE (futuristic romantic-suspense). You know these facts because they are mentioned prominently on each of my new releases. HOWEVER, it turns out that a lot of you don't actually read me under all three of my names. Some of my best friends (so-called) won't read me under all three of my names. Sheesh, I've got actual relatives who only read one or two of my names.

    Now, it has been my considered opinion for some time that if you like the kinds of characters that I do as Quick, you'll like the ones I do as Krentz or Castle. (Of course, the unfortunate corallary is that if you don't like my Quick characters, you probably won't love my Krentz or Castle characters, either. But that's another issue, one we are not going to dwell on at length here because I find the subject just too sad for words). :(

    I think one of the primary reasons we love or hate an author's characters is that the values and worldviews of those characters either resonate with and affirm our own values and worldviews or they leave us cold. Another reason we love or hate the characters is that we actually “get” their sense of humor. Or not. And, yes, I do realize that my sense of humor -- which is, of course, my characters' sense of humor -- is not universally appealing. (Another unfortunate fact that we will not be discussing here).
    Happily, if you are still reading this blog we have to assume that you and I share a reasonably similar, if somewhat warped, sense of amusement. :)

    A third reason we love or hate characters is that we find them sympathetic, and intriguing. No, they aren't just like us, but we would find them interesting people to know.

    If you're still reading this blog we have to assume we're on the same page in a lot of ways. Speaking as an author with three names, I would like us to be on the same page literally. As in reading my books under all three of my names.

    Now comes the cunning plan. With my most recent Amanda Quick title, SECOND SIGHT, I introduced a new series. The next volume in the series will be my January Jayne Ann Krentz title, WHITE LIES. Are you getting the picture here? This series will cross over between my Krentz and Quick titles. (At this point I am not taking the series into the Jayne Castle books. I figure we need baby steps here..)

    The heart and soul of the series are the men and women of the mysterious ARCANE SOCIETY, an organization devoted to paranormal research. Each of the books will feature a different hero and heroine and each can be read as a stand-alone. But those daring and adventurous readers who read across my two names will, I hope, learn lots of fascinating new stuff about the Society and about the characters from the other books.

    If you'd like to get some background on the ARCANE SOCIETY go to www.jayneannkrentz.com and click on the “ARCANE SOCIETY” thingy on the left. You'll find some history, profiles of the first two heroes, and lots of other good stuff. By the way, the amazing art for the Arcane Society files was done by none other than my glorious web goddess, Cissy Hartley.

    Okay, that's it. That's the plan. Majestic in its simplicity, is it not? Or course, some might claim that it is simpleminded in its simplicity, but, again, we won't go there.

    I've given you my opinion. What do you think are the factors that cause readers to get hooked on a series?

    45 Comments:

    Anonymous Anonymous said...

    I can´t speak for others, but the reason I read a serie is the same as for me reading another book by some author: I liked the book(s) I had read previously by him/her.

    Authors are as different as the are many, some bad, others not so bad, still others good and a few very good.

    I think it´s important when an author writes a serie to make each book independent - a stand alone, but also to connect it in such a way to previous/later books that in forms a whole. Easier said than done.

    One of the most common mistakes authors make in a serie is to repeat to much from earlier books. This I find irritating. If the reader has not read the first or previous books in a serie, that´s his/her problem. You should not have to constantly have things repeated in a second or third book which has already been covered earlier.

    In the end the trick to write a good serie is the same as writing a good book - namely:

    Write a good book - one at a time.

    Sirrý.

    12:05 AM  
    Blogger Karibear said...

    Well, speaking for myself I like all your books/series under any name. Though I have to say some of the characters I like best are the non-human ones: the depressed parrot, the dog who carries his food dish with him, the dust bunnies with their 4 eyes, the basement full of robot toys. That's not to say I don't like the human characters, but it enhances their flavor, so to speak, that they can appreciate the uniqueness of their companions.

    12:33 AM  
    Anonymous dee said...

    What if the Quick books are on the shelves but you have to actually order Castle or Krentz hmm? that's what I had to do last time.

    I like this comment below that was made as I know someone who actually does this and yes it is irritating and right at the front, before the 1st chapter. aagh

    You should not have to constantly have things repeated in a second or third book which has already been covered earlier

    12:44 AM  
    Anonymous Carrie from Wisconsin said...

    What do you think are the factors that cause readers to get hooked on a series?

    There are many factors involved when readers get hooked on a series. These factors are but not limited to plausible plot lines, believeable execution of the plot, realistic environment submersion and above all character development.

    Character development seems like a gimmie, but not all writers do it well and some do it with over kill. In terms of crossing-"worlds", I fear this might cause some issues here, especially if the two novels are to be stand-alones. My biggest pet peave with a well-known writer of a magical boy with a mark on his forehead is that she spent so much of her time re-introducing well established characters in subsequent volumes that it weakened the story somewhat. This could be a potential problem for volumes in a series that are meant as stand-alones. In my opinion, it tends to cause some fragmentation of the story as some points, such as character development, must be repeated. If the character development for each part of the series is not consistent, that might lead to confusion and in some cases cause the reader to question how these two "worlds" are really related and why they should attempt to read further, or read the novel(s) from the other "world". If the characters are well developed and likeable, people read or listen on to find out what happens.

    Character development (introduction) is strengthened through environment submersion and plot creation. In order to bring the reader into a story the environment must be built, such as Elizabethan or antiquarian London, the colonies, even the wild west. The buildings, events, transportation and societal trends surrounding the characters must be time and place appropriate or the entire environment falls apart. All of these elements combine to submerse the reader into the characters' world. When envirnment submersion is successfully carried out, the reader will begin to look for signs of what will happen to the characters and make guesses as to where the story goes. These guesses are confirmed or denied by the steady creation of the overall plot of the story. Plot creation can be a bit trickier. If a reader can guess exactly where a story goes within a few chapters, and find out that they were right by the end, they may not necessarily read further novels in the series or by the same author because of an assumption that all of the novels will be just as predictable. This predictability is neutralized by unexpected plot twists and turns. However, if there are so many turns, the reader may be lost and give up, considering the storyline a "lost soul".

    Plot creation isn't as easy as it seems. The plot created in the story must be believeable. A reader may lose interest if the the plot (the journey that takes the characters through the novel) is unrealistic or disjointed from the characters. If the plot is unrealistic, it disperses the reader from the well created world and can make re-entry problematic. Realism of the plot depends completely on the environment of the story and the charcters themselves. It would be hard to reconcile a non-violent person into a violent action without plausible reasons or prove that a charcter wants to destroy another without proof of motive.

    Realism may help establish a plausible plot and align it to the characters, but execution is what sustains the reader through the rest of the novel. Added twists and turns excite and intrigue a reader through the execution of the plot. It's one thing to create a plot for the heroine to desire societal ruin for an adversary and quite another to carry it out. For example, in "Mischief", Imogen desires to destroy Vanick socially (sorry if names are misspelled). She has a plan (the overall plot of the story) and puts it into motion. What carries the reader is how this plan is truly executed (thus execution of the plot). It would have been a predictable story if she was able to carry out her plan exactly as she wanted. The reason this would have made for a boring story is that it was the main plot, not a minor subplot.

    What also helps plot execution is how each individual character responds to variations of the plot and the plot itself. Imogen has no qualms but Mathias and Horatia do not like her plan and fear for her safety. The dynamic between these three characters sets up a myriad of possibilities for plot execution but only some come to fruition. Imogen's plan could have worked if not for the untimely encounter with Selena and Alistair Drake in the garden. Mathias's reaction to this encounter provides a viable plot twist that could have been played out differently than it did. It could have been that Imogen would have been considered Colchester's paramour and made a target for other situations instead of her becoming engaged to him. This wouldn't have been much of a stretch since her nickname among the "ton" was "Immodest Imogen". However, Colchester's nickname of "Cold blooded Colchester" would have been bonafide rather than squelched as it is by his announcement of their engagement. The plot is executed as it is because Colchester is really an honorable guy and Imogen is really modest when compared to the rumors about town. This fact makes the plot realistic and keeps the characters joined to the plot throughout it's execution. The Lavinia and Tobias trilogy is a great example of how one plot is carried from one book to the next. The need for clients and the search for them (a plot line) keeps the reader connected to the environment and the characters making them more familiar with each novel. The fact that they do not marry also carries the storyline from the first through the third when they finally do wed.

    That being said, a cross-"world" series could be done as long as the character development, environment submersion and plot creation can unify the overall execution of the plot(s) without being redundant or overdone. While some of you may see how these elements do work to grab your attention and know exactly how and when you look for the parts, some of you may be unaware of how and when these elements work their magic on you. Either way, the truth is that without these elements a series would not be worth following.

    As I have read only Amanda Quick (AQ) novels so far, I cannot comment or speculate exactly how things will play out in her other "worlds". I just know that the factors that I mentioned in this post are the very reason I became a fan. Jayne has executed all of these elements well in her AQ titles. I also have always had a facination for the time periods in these novels (I am taking an intro Anthropology course and an Archaeology course at my local university). As I have been a Sci-Fi reader for years ("Otherland" by Tad Williams, "Johnny Mnemonic", R.A. Salvatore series, "Aftermath" by Levar Burton (Geordi Laforge) and watched various T.V. series and movies over the years), I believe that Jayne's other novels may also appeal to me, I just need to find the time to read them.

    Carrie

    1:25 AM  
    Blogger Marianne Arkins said...

    What do you think are the factors that cause readers to get hooked on a series?

    I won't say it as beautifully as Carrie just did, but IMHO, it's all about the characters. I read (and am re-reading currently) the "In Death" series, and I can't wait until the next one comes out with Mavis's baby! Woo! Because they are my friends.

    I did the same with the Savich/Sherlock FBI books by Catherine Coulter.

    And I already have "White Lies" on my list of mandatory reading. I enjoyed "Second Sight" very, very much (your Amanda Quick books are really the only historicals I read anymore).

    I'm babbling... I'd better get back to my coffee.

    2:09 AM  
    Anonymous Anonymous said...

    I read all your three "names" but I prefer your Krentz titles more coz I think they are they have more humour than your other two and the story is more flexible if you know what I mean....

    What I like about series are the revealing of secrets of the minor characters. Why are they sad/hurt/the way they are etc. Having said that, I really liked "Gift of Gold" and "Gift of Fire" which as you know have the same main characters. As for which series I liked, it will be "The Pirate", "The Cowboy" and "The Adventurer" (Hope I got the titles right ^__^;;) The reason I do is as stated above, I want to know what happened to the minor characters.

    Also, as a side note, don't romance titles have copy right? "White Lies" have been used by Linda Howard before and I think there are more but as a budding historian I find it er.... weird that they can have the same title. Someone please enlighten me!

    P

    4:58 AM  
    Blogger Lori Foster said...

    Morning Jayne.
    I'm shocked that anyone would not like anything you write. :-)
    I do - and for the reasons you stated. It's your heroes first and foremost that I adore. They're such solid rocks! I adore that.
    And when I first read your historicals, the men were just MORE of what I loved. I've only read a few of the Castle (because of time restrictions) but they're wonderful. Same great subtle humor, same quiet strength in the guys, but such wonderfully different stories and character backgrounds, and motivations. Love 'em all.
    How fun to be crossing the pseudonyms! Awesome idea!

    Lori

    5:30 AM  
    Blogger Lynn said...

    I am not a fan of historical romance at all. But because I love Krentz books, several years ago I started reading Quick novels and was quick (ha-ha) to add them to my must buy list. I bought the Castle titles without even reading a review, blurb, or back cover because I knew I would not be disappointed and the flower series is a favorite.

    Puh-lease, if Jayne would write a cereal box I'd read it and probably save the box!

    Can't wait for White Lies in January.

    5:53 AM  
    Anonymous ag said...

    What do you think are the factors that cause readers to get hooked on a series?

    Definitely engaging characters, plot creation and some continuity (note: not repetition). I've read your AQ novels, as I'm a big fan of historicals.

    6:09 AM  
    Anonymous Anonymous said...

    Well Jayne,

    I read you because I love your sense of humor... I laugh out loud when reading your books and when I realized... not sure how, that you wrote under other names, I went out and got those books too. I think I prefer the Krentz books or the Castle because of the freedom you have with the characters. Not bound by the rules of propriety and such but the sense of humor remains as does the strong female characters and well, I just love your male heros!

    I have read the first of the Arcane Society books and can't wait for the next! Keep writing so that I can keep reading!

    hellismd

    6:58 AM  
    Blogger Suzanne Simmons said...

    I read Jayne under all three names and love them all! (In fact, if I may "brag" a tiny bit, I have read every book Jayne/Amanda has ever written.) I especially love Jayne's sense of humor. She always makes me laugh out loud.

    FYI: Book titles can not be copyrighted. (White Lies is also a common phrase and no one would be allowed to trademark it for that reason.)

    7:13 AM  
    Blogger Jayne Ann Krentz said...

    Lots of good theories here to explain why folks can get hooked on a series. But one factor seems to stand out for most of us: it's the characters.

    Thanks so much to all of you who plan to give my Arcane Society a chance! I can't tell you how much I appreciate it.

    By the way, I agree that, after a while, the problem of having to repeat background info in each new book may become an issue. If that happens I'll do what I'm now doing in my Jayne Castle Ghost Hunter series: put a short note up front that will bring new readers up to speed without giving away plot twists. With luck, though, that won't be necessary. (Of course, that's assuming this series thing actually works!)

    For now there is a lot of background on the series at my website. Just push the "Enter Arcane House" icon on the blog to view it.

    Thanks again for all the interest!

    --Jayne

    7:35 AM  
    Blogger Yasmine Galenorn said...

    Yep, it's characters for the most part. I have readers who read everything I write, because of my characters. I think when you get hooked on an author, as opposed to just a series, you tend to read everything they can possibly put out on paper. Although, I have to admit, if some of my favorite authors wrote westerns, I might not read them because I don't have any interest in westerns. Same with inspirational. But barring the genres I really don't care for, I read for character. :)

    Yasmine

    9:43 AM  
    Blogger DFender said...

    Great blog, Jayne... and yes, I "get" your sense of humor...lol. It's one of the first things I loved about your Quick characters.

    That being said, I think what draws me into a series, personally speaking, is that I always want to know more. More about the main characters, more about the peripheral characters, more about the subject.

    One of the saddest things, for me, is to experience is "The End" of a great book. I always want to read more about the time, place, subject and/or characters than I've already experienced in that book. For example: As with Stella's most recent, I can't wait to visit Father Cyrus, Wazoo and the rest of the gang. In the same manner I'd really like to visit with Venetia and Gabriel again as well as find out more about Caleb.

    It'll be VERY interesting to visit the newest version of the Arcane Society, based in the 21st century. Wonder if Venetia and Gabriel will be mentioned? Hmmm.

    Thanks, Jayne!

    Deb

    10:00 AM  
    Anonymous ChrisTinaC said...

    I SO wish I had something intelligent to add, something profound or world shaking. The fact is, I read series for character, and because I like the author.

    I read Jayne Krentz because...well, because when I read her books I feel like it is a personal communication from a very good friend: comfortable, reaffirming, witty, inspiring, reassuring, always with warmth, care, affection, and sincerity.

    And the re-reads are as good as the first time! Matter of fact, once they go paperback, I always buy TWO because I dang near ruined a friendship over a "lost" Jayne [well, that and the fact that what "lost" the book was the tide on a beach, while I was home working!!!]

    You are indeed boldly going, Jayne: whither thou leadest I shall follow -- and I'm sure I won't be alone.

    11:26 AM  
    Anonymous AgTigress said...

    Series - I can take 'em or leave 'em. I just don't seem to have the obsession with linked stories that many readers feel. I think it is fun to connect the AQ and JAK titles (I remember how charmed I was by the first tentative link you essayed, the retrospective mention of the Hades Cup of Sharp Edges in a later AQ title), but this is not a major factor in my enjoyment of the books.

    I'll simply read anything you write, Jayne, because I love your characters, your humour, your voice, and the fundamental values and principles that shine through, whether you are writing about the past, the present or the future. In general, I am not all that attracted by 'futuristic' settings, but I enjoy the Jayne Castle books for all the same reasons that I enjoy the JAK and AQ books.

    1:33 PM  
    Blogger Estella said...

    I read series because I like the characters in them and the author of them.

    1:51 PM  
    Blogger Kathy K said...

    Characters certainly...I also like the connections between previous and subsequent stories in a series. With a series, there is already some background; it's easier getting into the place or people 'cause you've already been there or been introduced to them...that's my opinion anyway.

    And some authors do this very, very well: Jayne, Lori and Susan are among my very favourites [as listed in response to Lori's post the other day].

    Jayne, as for the author's sense of humour being something the reader can relate to, I definitely agree; both the sense of humour and the way one looks at life and things & people around one? I sure found myself enjoying your post, and as Lori said, I can't believe that there are people out there that read the stories under one name, but don't like your stories in other of your incarnations....

    I never read Historicals until I found out that Jayne Ann Krentz also wrote under the name Amanda Quick. I discovered that I did indeed like 'em...at least written by some authors ~ but that goes for just about anything.
    I do know that I have never read one of your books (and I have nearly all of them) that I didn't really like or keep. I'm only missing the five Jayne Bentley books and six of the Jayne Castles [all the MacFadden's and the Guinevere Jones], and I continue to hunt for them.

    I am very much looking forward to WHITE LIES. The introduction to the Arcane Society in SECOND SIGHT was fabulous and the book ended far too quickly; but then they all do! Being able to cross time-lines following the Society is such a cool idea! Certainly the book won't be out soon enough for me!

    Kathy

    2:41 PM  
    Anonymous Tammy said...

    I read all 3 of you Jayne. :-)

    As for why? The characters have to be likable/sometimes lickable (guys), and the bad guys need to be booed. A person has to feel for the characters.

    And all your books do!

    :::wheedling tone::: you sure you can't manage to squeeze at least one Arcane Society in under the Castle name? I think it'd be cool to see them in the future:::

    P.S. When I saw the title of the next one (White Lies) I went and check something on my bookshelves - I already have a book titled White Lies - and it's an oldy - contemp. Doesn't matter though - cause yours will be going with the rest of your books.

    3:41 PM  
    Blogger DFender said...

    By the by, one of the principal reasons that I kept/keep reading the Quick books (har-har) and added the Krentz/Castle books was and is because Jayne's characters aren't the social-version of "perfect". They all have foibles and/or oddities about them. (Clumsy, near-sighted, socially awkward, etc.) The fact that "beauty is in the eye of the beholder" becomes such a large part of the love story has always been such a wonderful thing to read. You're characters really do make me laugh out loud. Thank you so much for so many hours of enjoyment.

    Deb

    3:43 PM  
    Blogger Brandy said...

    I read All 3 of your pseudonyms(sp). As a matter of fact, the only historicals I read anymore are yours! I adore your Castle series.
    As for what draws a reader to follow a series, I think it has a lot to do with the author. How that author connects the characters, keeping them fresh, but not so much so that a returning reader doesn't recognize a favortie character. Also, plot, a reader could love a certain character, but if the plot is not plausable then....the reader loses interest in the book, and sometimes the entire series.
    BTW, I have yet to find a book of yours I didn't enjoy!

    4:13 PM  
    Blogger Joyce said...

    I enjoy all your books. The genre doesn't matter, your writing does.

    4:42 PM  
    Blogger Cathy said...

    I love your books, no matter what hat you are wearing. I will start a series and keep reading a series because what the author has written makes me care. If the first book is a snooze-fest, I will probably finish it, though I have been known to chuck mid book, and then forget about it. If you have sucked me into your world with a great story and compelling characters, I will avidly await future stories. And since I am a big fan of your storytelling, what you write works for me.

    4:57 PM  
    Blogger DebVA said...

    Believe it or not, I have Australian and British editions of some of your books (in addition to the US variety) because airport bookstores invariably have your books and when facing a long airplane ride with nothing to read, I KNOW a Krentz, Castle or Quick will get me thru the hours. It doesn't matter if I've read the book several times over, quality counts :)
    Deb

    6:19 PM  
    Anonymous Louis said...

    Ms Jayne.....

    I have enjoyed your books no matter the authors name on them...your current three or the three or four additional previous ones.

    Why series?...I like a good story with delightful characters...and I like to see what happens to fulfill their lives.

    Looking forward to more "Arcane" stories.

    7:03 PM  
    Blogger erin said...

    For me, the characters are how I get hooked. I love revisiting old friends. Characters don't have to be actual people, do they? I think the Arcane Society counts as a character. I can't wait to read your JAK book in the series. =)

    9:37 PM  
    Anonymous Anonymous said...

    I enjoy your historicals, because you're primarily a researcher and don't have photographs sitting on a mantel in the 17th century. Makes me grind my molars when I read stuff like that. But all of your books in all three incarnations are timeless in a way. I see history as people living their lives the best they can. Different styles, different moraes but all just people. And the characters in your books come across as real people who mostly do the best they can. So I can sympathize with them, laugh with them. Write a series, I'll buy it and read it. Write a stand alone, ditto. But if you could just bring yourself to write one more medieval. . . Please,please,please?

    10:47 PM  
    Anonymous Carrie from Wisconsin said...

    I have to agree with the pervious post, please write another story from the Mystique era. In fact, that was the first book of yours I ever got into. I love Hugh the Relentless. I also have to ditto dfender's post about the characters and their social awkwardness. I can really see myself as one of those women.

    It's also nice to know that I am not the only one that reads a title more than once. Up until now, I couldn't find a soul who read any book more than once!

    Jayne thanks for putting so much effort into your novels, it makes them that much better!!

    Carrie

    12:27 AM  
    Blogger CorgiNole said...

    One reason I enjoy series is watching characters grow and times change. One of my favorites is Elizabeth Peter's "Amelia Peabody" series - up to 18 installments now spanning the time between 1884-1922. What is neat is seeing the change in lifestyle, addition (and loss) of family members (and cats), and the evolving humor.

    I also enjoy linked books and finding the links among the stories.

    Favorite books, I'll read over and over and over. I have several under-the-bed storage boxes filled with paperbacks of favored authors.

    I am curious though, a question to the authors here - What makes a Trilogy a special thing to write? Is there something magical about three books as compared to two or five?

    Cheers, K

    11:06 AM  
    Blogger Karibear said...

    I already posted a bit, but after reading some of the comments I decided to expand. I do agree that a place can be a character too, like Eclipse Bay. And I thought I'd add some of my favorite writers of all genres who have done great series [IMHO].

    Rachel Lee's Conard County
    Kirk Mitchell and James Doss for their modern Native American stories
    Rita Mae Brown for several, including the Sneaky Pie stories
    Robin Hobb for fantasies
    Elizabeth Haydon's Symphony of the Ages series
    Sharon McCrumb
    Joan Hess
    Elizabeth Peters' Amelia Peabody series
    Dana Stabenow's Kate Shugak and Liam Campbell [Breakup is by far the funniest murder mystery I've ever read]
    Elizabeth Moon
    Elizabeth Ann Scarborough
    Peter Bowen's Gabriel DuPre series
    Kim Stanley Robinson's Mars books [I don't think they're quite a series, just too big for one cover, like Gabaldon's stories about Clare and Jamie Frasier]
    Robert K Tanenbaum's Karp family
    Andrew Vachss for the dark side of life
    Robert Crais' Elvis Cole stories
    Pretry much anything by any of the Quills
    And many of the others mentioned by other posters here

    Now - this isn't the first time I've tried this, let's see if the Great Blog eats this one, too.

    11:24 AM  
    Anonymous Carrie from Wisconsin said...

    It's kind of neat to see other writers mentioned.

    I am particular about the type of characters I attach to and some of the writers that end up connected to my favorite authors write about characters, worlds, I would never connect with, such as boxers or wrestlers, sorry Lori. I won't go into detail on this unless someone asks me to. Because I connect with only certain types of characters, certain types of worlds, I am leary to just pick up a book and start reading and I am also less inclined to believe a computer generated source such as Amazon because the intent is to sell books. What I do tend to believe more often that not is another reader of the same types of stories and am grateful for recommendations for authors that write of similar periods, worlds, to the ones of my favorite authors, such as the AQ books.

    After reading these blogs, I realize that Jayne's other books would appeal to me. In fact, I found two hard copies for re-sale at a local library and I bought them both without hesitation. I am also in the middle of reading the collection of writer essays entitled, "Dangerous Men and Adventurous Women: Romance Writers on the Appeal of the Romance". It may be from 1992 but the points seem to stand the test of time. Meaning, that what the writers say still applies to the current writing scene. As I still have a few essays to go, I can't say for sure that every one applies, but it'll be interesting to see if my opinion is still the same after I finish the collection.

    Carrie

    1:30 PM  
    Anonymous Zorah said...

    I wonder if those of us who so enjoy series books are the same who read all the Nancy Drews, Trixie Beldens and Little House books as children. An elementary school librarian once said that children will read series because meeting the characters again is like meeting a friend on the playground. I know I read series books as a child and continue to enjoy them today.I read Ms Krentz's books under all three names and find that maybe the child in me still likes to find out a bit about 'old friends'.

    1:55 PM  
    Anonymous Carrie from Wisconsin said...

    Now that I think about it, familiarity was key for me as an adolescent. I read every book related to the Black Stallion and was always interested to see if his children would take after him or their mothers. I also find myself attached to other favorite characters such as Han Solo, Harry Potter, E.T. (yes, there was a book after the movie), Beazus and Ramona, Drizzt Do'Urden (R.A. Salvatore character, dark elf with human qualities that are uncharacteristic to his race), Dr. Kay Scarpetta and another obscure horse trilogy that started with "Birth of the Firebringer".

    When I think back on it, it still comes down to the elements I discussed in my first post. All of those elements combined to give me the sense I was in the respective worlds and watched the characters from a window or even from their own psyche. Those connections aren't always easy. I have come across books and short stories that just couldn't draw me in. As I got older and wanted to know why this happened, I paid more attention and compared one book or style with another which lead me to the afore mentioned conclusions and observations.

    Carrie

    7:46 PM  
    Anonymous Anonymous said...

    I've been reading Jayne for so long that I've read not only her current three names, but her Amanda Glass, Jayne Taylor, Stephanie James, etc. I was reading something earlier about "comfort" reads and that what all of your books are for me Jayne - I think I've read all of them at least twice, and some as many as a dozen times. Some favorites? The Castle flower series, Quick's Ravished, Krentz's Trust Me, and Glass's Shield's Lady. Keep 'em coming and I'll keep buying and reading them.

    Patty

    8:33 PM  
    Blogger Jayne Ann Krentz said...

    Lots of great comments and insights here. It's obvious that a lot of us do enjoy series. Regarding the question about "why trilogies", I have no idea where that convention comes from. I do know it has been strong in the romance genre for years. Personally, I'm hoping the Arcane Society books get beyond three but we shall see.

    Meanwhile, I'm on a cruise ship in the sunny Caribbean and I am about to head back to my deck chair with "Hundred Dollar Baby", the latest "Spencer" novel by Robert B. Parker. It is a series that I have been reading for years...

    --Jayne

    12:33 PM  
    Anonymous Anonymous said...

    Enjoy your cruise. I guess no answer is a "no" answer to the request for another medieval. Rats.

    3:52 PM  
    Anonymous Lori H said...

    I love reading books in a series and have to read them in order, however I don't read historicals. I don't know why I just never have.

    8:44 AM  
    Anonymous Mimi said...

    Hi Ladies,

    When I read a series, I like the fact that I can connect somewhat with one of the characters. I have to say Jayne, I have a collection of all your books including Jayne Castle and Amanda Quick. So please be happy in knowing that some people do read all three. Your characters,especially the ladies, do things or say things that sound exactly like me.

    2:38 PM  
    Anonymous Anonymous said...

    I love your books and read under each name because of the content of the book.

    10:14 AM  
    Blogger Lucy S. said...

    I have read books by all 3 names. I started with Quick, then Krentz, and then Castle. I do love them all.

    For a series of books - one series that I think is done very well is the one by Christine Feehan for the Dark series. I don't know if you've read any - these books are paranormal romance adventure.

    Anyways, what I like about this Dark series, is that each book can stand alone, but there is also a thread of a larger story through them all.

    For example, something that happened in the 4th book, is later revealed in the latest book to be part of a bigger picture. In this example, Syndil, who has the gift of healing the earth (from "Dark Challenger") is now in the book "Dark Celebration" as part of revealing a deeper link in their heritage. I love that the characters and plots connect again, and on a deeper and more revealing level.

    So, although these "Dark" characters are good across the book series, I do like that the larger story gets developed more and more.

    6:23 PM  
    Blogger Lucy S. said...

    I have read books by all 3 names. I started with Quick, then Krentz, and then Castle. I do love them all.

    For a series of books - one series that I think is done very well is the one by Christine Feehan for the Dark series. I don't know if you've read any - these books are paranormal romance adventure.

    Anyways, what I like about this Dark series, is that each book can stand alone, but there is also a thread of a larger story through them all.

    For example, something that happened in the 4th book, is later revealed in the latest book to be part of a bigger picture. In this example, Syndil, who has the gift of healing the earth (from "Dark Challenger") is now in the book "Dark Celebration" as part of revealing a deeper link in their heritage. I love that the characters and plots connect again, and on a deeper and more revealing level.

    So, although these "Dark" characters are good across the book series, I do like that the larger story gets developed more and more.

    6:24 PM  
    Blogger Pat said...

    I'm late making a comment but . . . I read Jayne--any name, all books, and I own 'em all. I think that says it all. When "White Lies" comes out, I'll buy it and then wait impatiently for the next Jayne book, by any name.

    9:13 PM  
    Anonymous Carrie from Wisconsin said...

    I just hope that I can get caught up by the end of the summer, yes summer. I have a semester and a half left to go before I graduate from the local university. I read/work on just enough to keep me sane, but I have a plateful when it comes to studying human evolution and archaeology. When the semester ends I plan on getting closer to caught up in my R.A. Salvatore series (Dark Elf) and have Second Sight completed. One thing I have discovered is that there is a huge misconception about the romance genre that exists even today, which is sad. There is some excellent writing here that people are missing, and until now I was one of them!

    11:38 PM  
    Blogger Pat said...

    I must be slow. I've just now made the connection between Emmett London and Ambrose Wells--a box of curiosities. The light dawned--I just finished re-reading "Lie by Moonlight" an hour ago after having re-read "After Dark", "After Glow" and "Ghost Hunter" recently.

    10:57 AM  
    Anonymous Charmaine said...

    Personally, I read a series because I've enjoyed one of the books and want to find out more about the characters in it.

    I have read Krentz and Quick titles. I enjoy the contemporary Krentz ones better than the period Quick ones - I found the Quick ones just didn't 'gel' for me although I generally do enjoy a period story.
    I have found myself wondering if English period stories are tricky for an American author to get 'just right'? (I'm from New Zealand, myself)

    12:46 PM  

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