As many of us know, a common thing authors do after finishing writing a series, or sometimes even in between the publishing of books, is writing novellas. These short novels allow the series we love to live on, and often give us a glimpse at the pasts and futures of our favourite characters.
This sounds like a great way for us to enjoy our favourite series even after they’ve ended, but unfortunately, it doesn’t always work out like that. Novellas sometimes miss the mark when it comes to interesting plots and enjoyability, at least in my experiences. Additionally, they often contribute very little to the overall development of the series. This isn’t always the case, but it is nevertheless quite common.
I’ve found that sometimes, there’s simply something about reading an extension of your favourite series that makes it fall flat of your expectations.
Is this just me? Eh, probably.
But regardless of whether or not I’m alone in this struggle, I thought I’d share with you some novellas that I really enjoyed, and some others that weren’t exactly my cup of tea.
Let’s start with the good:
Fairest by Marissa Meyer
While this book isn’t one of the four main instalments of the Lunar Chronicles series, I consider it to be just as good. Fairest is a prequel to this series, as its events, following Queen (then Princess) Levana, the main antagonist of the Lunar Chronicles, take place nearly two decades before the events of Cinder.
Fairest is an absolutely captivating book. It takes one the most horrible, cruel villains I’ve ever encountered in the YA genre and gives her humanity. Throughout the book, we’re shown Levana’s devastating past, and all the things she was exposed to as a child that morphed her into the wicked queen she eventually became. I absolutely hated Levana when reading the Lunar Chronicles, but reading Fairest made me really sympathize with her character. I think it was really genius of Marissa Meyer to take such an evil character like Levana and give her so much more depth and complexity. I love this novella!
Happily Ever After by Kiera Cass
This book is a very sweet collection of novellas, all of which I loved. It gives us a lot more background information on some of the characters in the Selection series, such as Prince Maxon and Queen Amberly. It was nice to be able to see some more development of these characters– Especially Maxon.
I feel like in the Selection series, his character was completely defined by his relationship to America, the protagonist. There’s nothing wrong with this, as she was the main character of the series, but I did really appreciate getting to learn more about Maxon’s character before he’d even met America.
Now that we’ve discussed a couple good novellas, let’s get into the bad ones!
***Disclaimer: When I say “bad ones”, I only mean based off of my own personal preference. If you enjoyed any of the following books, that’s perfectly okay! After all, there is never going to be a book that everyone shares the same opinions on.
A Court of Frost and Starlight by Sarah J. Maas
Oh, how I hated this book.
It was dull, and dry, and cringeworthy, and all the things a book shouldn’t be. When I finished ACOFAS, I was really disappointed, because I actually like the A Court of Thorns and Roses series, despite having a love/hate relationship with it.
Not only was this book bad, but it was also very, very pointless. If you asked me to describe the plot to you in a few sentences, I doubt I’d be able to because the plot, essentially, was non-existent. It was just a bunch of shallow imagery and narration and make-out scenes that didn’t even make sense.
Four by Veronica Roth
This wasn’t the worst novella ever, but I definitely don’t think it was worth reading. When you compare it to the books in the Divergent series, the writing style is obviously different. While this might be because it’s from a different character’s perspective, the writing itself still feels very off. I honestly think Veronica Roth just slapped this book together as an easy money grab, you know? It hardly features Tris at all, so if you’re looking for further development of Tris and Tobias’s relationship, don’t waste your time.
What are some novellas that disappointed you? Or some that you loved?
Let me know down below! I hope you all enjoy the rest of your weekend! Happy reading!