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Series Fatigue or Fantasy Fatigue?

So here I am, currently trying to read Midnight Tides, the fifth book in Steven Erickson’s epically sized Malazan fantasy series. Now, I’ve liked the first four, certainly well enough to wade through upwards of 2000 pages of story in a genre that I am not pre-disposed to enjoy. But, and you knew one was coming, for some reason, I just can’t seem to get into Midnight Tides. Maybe it’s because House Of Chains wrapped up a four book long story cycle, closing the book, as it were, on several characters, leaving Tides to pick up with completely new stories and characters.

The prospect of reading through 500+ more pages of new stuff, even if it does tie in to what has gone before, isn’t exactly filling me with excitement, even though I have enjoyed the other books. For some reason, I’m having issues getting into this new story. As an example, it took me roughly four days to read through 60 pages in Tides. I took a break around page 40 or so, and in another four days I started, and finished, Queen Of Candesce. I feel like I’m burned out already on the Malazan series, even though I know there is a lot more to come, and Erickson has done a stellar worldbuilding job with his setting. So, is this series fatigue? Have others reached this point with this, or any other series? To those who have read farther than me, is it worth it to keep going? Or is this a symptom of fantasy fatigue?

Maybe its just me. As you can see from my shelf, I also have Carnival in my queue. I’ve actually read about 20 pages in, and, while the setting has some promise, it hasn’t really grabbed me either. But! I just obtained from John two very interesting looking books. The awesome looking The Making Of Star Wars (see my shelf on the right) and 1945, by Robert Conroy, which combines two great tastes: science fiction (in the form of alternate history) and World War II. So I face the hard choice to figure out what I want to read now. I’ll probably go with the Star Wars book, being the fanboy that I am.

What do you think: Series or Fantasy fatigue, and can I cure it?

About JP Frantz (2323 Articles)
Has nothing interesting to say so in the interest of time, will get on with not saying it.

4 Comments on Series Fatigue or Fantasy Fatigue?

  1. Take two Robert Lynn Asprins and call me in the morning. Ba-dum crash! :-S

    Seriously…see “Overexposure” in the list of The Top 7 External Impediments to an Enjoyable Reading Experience.

  2. Dave Smith // June 6, 2007 at 12:11 am //

    I had the same experience with Midnight Tides. I almost threw it against the wall when I opened the dramatis personae and realized I recognized maybe one or two names. Then when I started it and realized it was a prequel to a character (Trull Sengar I think) that I didn’t really care for, and I still haven’t been motivated to read it. And it’s been more than a year since I bought it.

    It’s a shame too, since there are some damn good storylines that I actually would like to know what happens. But then there’s other storylines that I don’t care for, and there’s no way I’m going to wade through them to get find the good stuff.

  3. Anonymous // June 6, 2007 at 2:11 am //

    The trouble with SF/F is the genres are overloaded with too many series. There is a cure: Do what I do and pick stand-alone novels.

  4. Wahhaaa // June 6, 2007 at 6:31 am //

    Midnight Tides was hard to get into for me, for all of the reasons mentioned. It felt like an almost completely separate story from the previous 4 books. But the end is just great and the sixth book, The Bonehunters, dovetails all three storylines very nicely together (and is awesome to boot!).

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