Favorite series often have us counting down the days until the next release. (I’m very sad to say we have to wait until March for Lover Reborn, the new Black Dagger Brotherhood book, and Sacrifical Magic, the next book in Stacia Kane’s Downside Ghosts books.) We spend the months leading up snapping up every excerpt, snippet and cover sneak peek the author posts on her Facebook or tweets out. Hording the glimpses of what will surely be fan-freaking-tastic.
I was lucky enough to get an advanced copy of Chloe Neill’s Drink Deep. I lusted after this book from the second I finished its predecessor Hard Bitten. It came in the mail and instead of devouring it, I set it atop my dresser. Every morning and every night I stared at the shiny red cover. I had to decide if I was ready for answers to the mega cliffhanger at the end of Hard Bitten. Having promised my blog readers a review on release day, I finally bit the bullet. But why was it so hard to crack the spine?
It wasn’t the first time. With increasing frequency, I pre-order the book, get home on release day to see that pretty box waiting outside the door and then bite my nails before starting it. It’s not true with every book or every series, but with pivotal novels–say the final book in a series or a long-awaited characters’ book–I get nervous to start.
My mind races. What if it doesn’t do all the glorious things the excerpts teased? What if I don’t like Character A now that he’s hooked up with Character B? What if, God forbid, the plot is crap? I’ve built the book up so much that I fear it’ll disappoint. With my most beloved series, I just really don’t want to hate the next book. I don’t want to be forced to give up on one of my auto-buys.
J.R. Ward’s Lover Mine was going to be a deal-breaker for me, if it didn’t deliver. I held on to the book for weeks. I’d spent novel after novel becoming attached to John Matthew, and wanted him to get some happiness with Xhex. And, damn if the ending of the previous Black Dagger Brotherhood novel didn’t make me nervous. She was missing. (She’s also a hard-ass, and not particularly interested in relationships.) I know the formula in BDB novels. It’s understood there will be some happily-for-now action by the end of the novel, but if Ward had done wrong by John Matthew, I’d have been gone. Seven books in, I didn’t want to lose my Brothers. Thankfully, Lover Mine delivered a HEA that remained true to the characters. But I can’t help but wonder if I’ll be able to dig into March’s Lover Reborn immediately.
I think we’re all nervous about Lothaire. Kresley Cole is going to give the bad guy center stage. We’ve seen him violent, but now we get to see him love. And everyone’s craving it. (I like the scary ones, remember?) But what if it doesn’t work? Cole has managed to make many readers fall for less sympathetic heroes, so if anyone can make Lothaire boyfriend material, it’s her. Still… nervous.
And then there are the novels I know I’ll just devour too quickly. In February, Paris will get to take the forefront of Gena Showalter’s Lords of the Underworld series in The Darkest Seduction. I have no doubts it’ll bring every bit of sexiness we’d expect from the man possessed by the demon of promiscuity. The thrill of finally getting a full taste of Paris is enchanting, but are you ready for it to be over? $10 says I will read this in a single sitting, once I decide to liberate it from the “Are you ready to read me?” spot on the dresser.
I flutter between excitement and nerves for books by Rachel Vincent, Jeaniene Frost, Eve Silver, Larissa Ione, Meljean Brook, and Richelle Mead. Which series give you reading excitement stress?
While Chelsea Mueller runs Vampire Book Club, she won’t turn down a sexy werewolf, demon or faerie. (Her husband often reminds her that she’s taken.)