One of the things you have to deal with as a Science Fiction and Fantasy reader is the fact that basically everything is a series. Even if the book started out as a standalone, it’s almost a given that the author will end up writing a sequel. Or another ten books in that world. Sometimes it’s great! Sometimes you’re thrilled to follow the same characters through endless adventures or learn Everything about the world they live in. And sometimes it feels like the author is being paid by the word, the first book was sufficient, and would just stop already?
As I have been an SFF reader for. . . a long time, I have begun a lot of different series. I’m good at that. Finishing series is another story. There are far fewer of those.
But there are plenty of series I fully intend to finish or at least keep up to date on as new books come out.
So in no particular order, here are some of the series I intend to finish:
The Green Bone Saga by Fonda Lee
Two crime families control the destiny of the island nation of Kekon, the only place in the world where the precious stone jade is found. Jade grands certain people superhuman abilities, and has helped the people of Kekon to defend their land against the outside world. But the world is changing, and the two families– Mountain Clan and No-Peak Clan– are on the brink of war with each other, just as their closed-off island is opening up to the rest of the world, a move that involves exporting jade and the drug that allows non-Kekonese people to use. Such a change will affect both the clans, and could make them even more powerful than ever or destroy them both.
The Green Bone saga follows the Kaul family who control the No-Peak Clan as power shifts from one generation to the next. They have a profound sense of honor and tradition, but it soon becomes apparent to them that they must change or else cede everything they care about to the Mountain clan. Reluctant family members must come home and take their place in ancient roles while doing their best to make accommodations to the modern world that will not be denied.
Jade City won the 2018 World Fantasy Award (along with Victor LaValle’s The Changeling). Jade War came out the following year, while Jade Legacy is due out in November, 2021.
The Expanse by James S.A. Corey
- Leviathan Wakes
- Caliban’s War
- Abaddon’s Gate
- Cibola Burn
- Nemesis Games
- Babylon’s Ashes
- Persepolis Rising
- Tiamat’s Wrath
- Leviathan Falls
Mankind has colonized the solar system, and while the various colonies of Earth’s moon, Mars, the asteroid belt, and various moons of the outer planets rely on each other for precious resources, politics always plays a role. Prejudice and greed prevent people from working together the way they should, while the threats of resources being withheld or outright planetary destruction are sometimes the only things that keep the various worlds even vaguely united. But an ancient threat from outside the solar system is waking up. It could destroy the entirety of humanity, and while some factions see it as a reason to unite all the worlds, others see it as the ultimate weapon they could wield to maintain their own control over all the worlds that humanity has colonized.
But no one truly understands this extra-solar threat, and the more that immoral scientists run their tests on it, the more dangerous it becomes to everyone.
Filled with politics, morally gray characters, and a crew of misfits who ends up in the middle of the mess, The Expanse gives us an epic space opera full of action and adventure, and a future that feels altogether too real for comfort.
The Sun Sword by Michelle West
The Dominion and the Essalieyan empire have been at odds for generations, but they are edging ever closer to all-out war as political intrigues spiral ever more out of control. Meanwhile, in the lands mortals dare not venture to, immortal beings have their own agendas involving the mortal realms. But as experienced and honor-bound as the older generations are, their plans are upended by members of the younger generation who have their own ideals and desires- and they are unwilling to adhere to the same rules and expectations as their elders.
Thanks to complex world-building and a massive cast of well-rounded characters, The Sun Sword series is perfect for fans of epic or political fantasy.
The Witchlands by Susan Dennard
In a world where witches have power over a variety of things– wind, water, fire, iron, etc.– young Safi has the rarest power. She is a Truthwitch who can tell if someone is lying or telling the truth. Her powers are desired by rulers across the Witchlands, and with a twenty-year truce coming to an end, war seems imminent. If anyone hears about Safi’s power, she’ll be hunted to the ends of the earth. But she’s not alone; her best friend and thread-sister Iseult has her own magical abilities, and together they’re an unstoppable team. Thanks to a rash decision on Safi’s part, the two friends find themselves in the middle of cutthroat political schemes and the opening battles of a war that could leave entire countries in ruins if the escalating conflicts aren’t put to a stop.
While this young adult fantasy series features many common YA tropes, Dennard balances them with unexpected situations and real consequences for her characters, creating a series that is full of drama, adventure, and romance without crossing the line into outright melodrama.
Rivers of London by Ben Aaronovitch
- Rivers of London
- Moon over Soho
- Whispers Under Ground
- Broken Homes
- Foxglove Summer
- The Hanging Tree
- Lies Sleeping
- False Value
Probationary Constable Peter Grant is a young London cop who is just trying to get through his first few years on the London police force when, while investigating a murder, he interviews a strange man who witnessed the murder. The witness, it turns out, is a ghost. And with that, Peter’s life is turned upside down as he’s swept up into the secret division devoted to magical and paranormal investigations under the command of Detective Chief Inspector Thomas Nightingale, a quirky man who is far, far older than he looks. Now, in addition to undergoing his basic police training, Peter is learning about magic and the customs and cultures of the various magical denizens of London, even as he and fellow young police officer, Leslie, investigate the appearance of a strange and deadly faceless man whose plans for London and its magic are unknown and nothing less than terrifying.