How To Find The Next Great Series
I will always have a soft spot for series books in my heart. When I was young, I didn’t really identify as a reader. Sure, I would grab books when my class went to the library, and I loved a good read-aloud, but I have very few memories of books being something I spent a lot of time on when I was very young. That is, until I reached grade four and fell in love with The Baby-Sitters Club, a series about a group of young female entrepreneurs and the hijinks and drama they encounter while starting up their babysitting business.
Once I found a series that fit, reading became a passion for me. I went from Kristy, Claudia, Stacey and Mary Anne to Jessica and Elizabeth Wakefield, twin sisters in sunny California riding around in their Fiat in the Sweet Valley High Series. Next I found a love of mysteries with Nancy Drew (and the spin-off series River Heights – does anyone remember that one? No? Just me?), and horror with Fear Street. Then I started reading Terry Brooks, and found myself falling love with the fantasy genre.
As a librarian, I read a lot about the benefits of reading, and I was thrilled when I found this article that outlined why series books are so important to young readers. Series books help children choose books more easily, gain and maintain an interest in reading, and help them gain a confidence that they can read and are a reader. Series books also offer comfort and familiarity to readers – when they pick up a book from a favourite series, they know what to expect.
With this in mind, I started thinking about my own reading as an adult, and how much genre reading I am currently doing. In much the same way that children and teens find comfort in easing into a familiar world through their series reading, I have been reading a lot of genre books lately to escape my worries. What is comforting for one person isn’t necessarily comforting for another – I tend to go to Regency and contemporary romances for my escapes, but I have a coworker who likes to read horror to relax before she goes to bed at night.
No matter what your relaxation reads are, check out the curated lists we have created on Overdrive and the Libby app. We have true crime, love stories, teen friendship stories, and, yes, even a Read a Series for the Summer list for kids. And remember – children up to age 12 can count their reading minutes to enter for great prizes in Regina Public Library’s Level Up! Summer Learning Challenge.