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Moonlight Reader

Lawyer, mother, avid reader. Game host extraordinaire! Partner in crime to Obsidian Black Plague! My bookish weaknesses include classics, fantasy, YA, and agreeing to read more books than is even remotely possible.

Review etiquette: reviewing series & spoiler alerts

Am I alone in my difficulty in writing reviews of series?


I find it really, really hard to review them in process, especially if they have an ongoing narrative arc. Mystery series with stand-alone whodunnits are a bit easier, although nowadays, most of those series, as well, have ongoing story arcs and character development.


The hardest bits for me are that the individual books don't necessarily have a completed story that can be discussed. And it is hard to discuss a three-book character arc until I've read all three books. But once I've read all three books, it is really hard to be sensitive to the folks who are only on book one, or, worse, who haven't even started the series.


So, doing individual book reviews as I read is hard. Going back and doing individual  book reviews once I've finished the whole series is also hard, in particular because my knowledge of where the story is going will necessarily color my impressions, and, because once I get beyond book 1, the reviews of books 2 plus are going to have plot spoilers on the preceding books by their very nature - by talking about things that are happening in later books, we reveal what has happened in earlier books.


And doing a full series/trilogy review, I don't know, is that even worse? Because the entire discussion in that sort of a post will focus on the full narrative arc of the series and how successful it was, which necessarily reveal a lot of the mystery, and, often as well, the ending.


I'm interested because I'm in the process of reviewing Leigh Bardugo's Grisha trilogy, which I really liked, and I'm struggling with questions of format.


How do you all do it?