As I Recall, It Ended Much Too Soon*

If your TBR is anything like mine, you do not need to add to it. There are always so many fine novels coming out that it’s impossible to ever read them all. And then there are those excellent novels from past years that sit on the ‘I really will read this’ list for too long.

That said, though, there are some series that I, for one, wish would be continued. I understand all about the vagaries of publishing and the demands of authors personal lives. There’s also the matter of what the author would like to do. But still, here are just a few authors I hope will/wish could add to their series.

One is Adrian Hyland. His novels Diamond Dove (Moonlight Downs) and Gunshot Road feature Aboriginal Community Police Officer (ACPO) Emily Tempest. She’s half-Aborigine, half-white, and was brought up in the small Moonlight Downs community. After an absence of several years, she returns, and immediately gets involved in murder cases. The books have met with a great deal of critical acclaim (Hyland won the Ned Kelly Award for Best First Fiction for Diamond Dove), and they’ve been very highly regarded among readers. And yet, there hasn’t been a third Emily Tempest novel. At least, there hasn’t to my knowledge (so someone, please put me right if I’m wrong about that). I would love to know what happens next in Emily Tempest’s life, and I hope there’ll be another in this series.

Ernesto Mallo has written, as far as I know, two novels featuring Buenos Aires police detective Venancio ‘Perro’ Lescano. The stories take place in the late 1970s – a very dangerous time to be in Argentina. The military is in firm control of the government, and has no compunctions about getting rid of anyone who would appear to disagree with their hard-right agenda. Against this backdrop, Lescano tries to simply be a good police detective and do his job well. But that often puts him up against some very dangerous forces. So far, Needle in a Haystack and Sweet Money are the only two Lescano novels. I truly hope that there’ll be more.

Hilary Mantel has gotten a great deal of praise for her two novels, Wolf Hall and Bring Up the Bodies. In fact, Mantel won the Man Booker prize for Wolf Hall. These stories detail the early life, rise, and fall of Thomas Cromwell, who was at one time a close confidant of King Henry VIII. As you’ll know, he fell from grace and was executed in 1540. The novels give the reader an ‘inside look’ at court intrigue, Cromwell’s personal life, and the atmosphere of the times. The third novel in this planned trilogy, The Mirror and the Light, is, from what I understand, in progress. I’ve not seen a publication date for it, yet, although I did read that it may be 2019 before we see this release. Mantel has contended with health issues, among other things, but still, I do hope The Mirror and the Light is published sooner rather than later. It’s been a wait…

In Domingo Villar’s Water Blue Eyes, we are introduced to Vigo police detective Inspector Leo Caldas. Along with his police duties, he also hosts a regular radio show called Patrolling the Waves. It’s an attempt to connect the police with citizens, and allows people to call in and ‘talk with a cop’ about their concerns and questions. Caldas features in Death on a Galician Shore as well. But, to my knowledge, there hasn’t been a third Leo Caldas novel. I understand that Cruces de Piedra (Stone Crosses) was to have been published a few years ago, but I haven’t seen it available (at least in the US). I’d love to know if it’s available elsewhere. And I look forward to reading the next Leo Caldas novel if there is one.

Nelson Brunanski is the author of, among other things, three novels featuring John ‘Bart’ Bartowski, who owns a fishing lodge in the northern part of Saskatchewan. He and his wife, Rosie, live further south in the province, in a small town called Crooked Lake. In Crooked Lake, Frost Bite, and Burnt Out, Bart gets involved in investigating mysteries, even though he’s reluctant to do so. These novels have a strong sense of small-town Saskatchewan, and are also character studies. I would like to read more about Bart and his friends and family.

There are, sadly, some series that didn’t continue because their authors passed away. That’s the case with, for instance, Scott Young’s series featuring RCMP police detective ‘Matteesie’ Kitologitak. Both Murder in a Cold Climate and The Shaman’s Knife offer interesting looks at life in Canada’s Far North. They also are police procedurals that show how the RCMP operates, especially in rural areas. I wish there had been more novels in this series.

Authors may choose not to continue a series. Or, publishers may decline to support the continuation of a series. There may be other reasons, too, for which a series might not continue, or for which there might be a delay in a series. But for readers, it can be difficult to wait for that next novel. Even with people’s TBRs as they are. These are just a few of my ideas. Which series would you like to see continue?


*NOTE: The title of this post is a line from the Four Seasons’ December 1963 (Oh What a Night).


Filed under Adrian Hyland, Domingo Villar, Ernesto Mallo, Hilary Mantel, Nelson Brunanski, Scott Young

33 responses to “As I Recall, It Ended Much Too Soon*

  1. I really love Alan Bradley’s flavia de Luce series, but I haven’t heard when the next one is coming out. Bradley’s pretty old from what I understand, so he may be slowing down…

  2. Steve Oerkfitz

    Love the Adrian Hyland books. Wish there were more. Never read any of Scott Young’s books. He was the father of Neil Young by the way.

  3. Margot, to my knowledge Ernesto Mallo has at least four book in his Inspector Lascano Series: Los hombres te han hecho mal; El policía descalzo de la plaza San Martín, Crimen en el barrio del Once and La Conspiración de los Mediocres. Those are the titles in Spain. However in Argentina the first two books are entitled: La aguja en el pajar and Delincuente argentino. I think I’ve not read yet La Conspiración de los Mediocres.

    • Oh, thank you, José Ignacio, for letting me know about that! I appreciate it very much. I’ll have to go on a hunt for them. Hopefully, they’ll be translated into English, too, for readers who prefer that language.

  4. I’m missing Reg Hill’s Dalziel and Pascoe series. I’m anxiously awaiting Hillary Mantel’s 3rd in the triology, too. And I have catching up to do in the wonderful Flavia DeLuce series.

    • I agree, Jack, about the Dalziel/Pascoe series. It’s such a well-written series, isn’t it? So is Bradley’s Flavia de Luce series. I’m looking forward to the third in Mantel’s trilogy, too.

  5. I too would have loved Adrian Hyland to continue but he has made it quite clear he’s moved on from that kind of writing. 😦

    I would have liked Ariana Franklin’s Adelia Aguilar series to continue but alas she (or at least Diana Norman) passed away.

    I do not like it when other people take over a deceased author’s series and never read those continuations – it feels all kinds of wrong to me even when the original author’s family are on board

    • Oh, I couldn’t possibly agree more, Bernadette, about follow-ons. I don’t read them, either, no matter who agrees to them.

      As to Diana Norman/Ariana Franklin’s Adelia Aguilar series, that’s definitely one I would have liked to see continued. It’s always really sad when death ends a really fine series. And I’m pleased you mentioned this particular series, because I’ve been meaning to spotlight one of those novels for a long time and just… haven’t yet. I appreciate the nudge.

      I didn’t know Hyland had decided to move on from the Emily Tempest series – NOT good news! I say we hunt him down and force him to write more. 😉 Perhaps he’ll change his mind; we can hope…

      • Spade & Dagger

        Enjoyed both of these authors too.
        Have added the Brunanski books to the TBR heap 🙂
        Jakob Arjouni sadly passed away leaving an interesting character of a Turkish detective in the German police.

        • Spade & Dagger

          I also wish Diane Wei Liang had written more in her series about the young female detective set in modern china.

        • I like that series, too, Spade & Dagger. It has a real sense of place and atmosphere, doesn’t it?

        • That’s another example, Spade & Dagger, of a series that ended too soon. Thanks very much for mentioning it. And I really hope you’ll Nelson Brunanski’s work.

  6. Margot: Nelson Brunanski and his brother were back to Wakaw, their home town which is the thinly fictionalized Crooked Lake, for Canada Day this summer. I do not know if more Bart Bartkowski mysteries will be written. He did publish a mystery, Victoria Day, in 2014 set in his adopted home in British Columbia.

    As I was reading the post I was thinking of Scott Young. I equally wish he had written more mysteries but he had so many writing interests and was good in all of them. I wonder if Neil has ever thought of writing a mystery?

    • I wonder that, too, Bill. I’ve never read that he did, but I’d be interested in reading it. Thanks, too, for the information about Nelson Brunanski. I saw that he’d written Victoria Day, but I have’t (yet) read it. It’ll be interesting to see if there will be any more Bart Bartowski books; I hope so.

  7. I have lots like that from favourite authors – although there are also some authors that I wish would have stopped sooner… Over-egging the golden goose, if you’ll pardon my mixed metaphors!

    I was sorry to hear of Helen Cadbury’s premature death earlier this year. I think she was just starting to get into her stride with her crime series featuring community officer turned PC Sean Denton. I wish the Martin Beck series had been longer – although it had always been planned to be just 10 volumes long. And you’ve reminded me that I still haven’t read the Emily Tempest series. I keep meaning to, but these books are not easy to find over here in the UK.

    • I’m sorry to hear it’s difficult to get Adrian Hyland’s work in the UK, Marina Sofia. I hope you will get the chance to read it at some point. And, yes, Helen Cadbury’s death was a really sad loss. That’s another author whose work I should spotlight and haven’t yet. I’m glad you mentioned her.

      As to authors who really should end their series sooner, I’ve felt that way, too. I suppose it’s hard to resist he lure of the royalties and the pressure from publishers. But I agree that some series go on for too long…

  8. Yes, we all know writers who have gone on too long!
    It would have been nice to have had more from Sarah Caudwell, who only wrote four in her series. I think I read somewhere that she had terrible writer’s block and then she died quite young.

    • I wish there’d been more Caudwell novels, too, Christie. I liked her Hilary Tamar series very much. Another of those authors who left us too soon…

      And I agree; plenty of writers let their series go on for too long…

  9. The Norwegian writer Pernille Rygg wrote two books I really enjoyed – The Butterfly Effect and The Golden Section. I’d like to see some more from her.

  10. Of course I miss Dalziel and Pascoe terribly but Reginald Hill did at least write plenty for us to enjoy and I also enjoyed P.D. James Adam Dagliesh books.

  11. It’s been so long since Wolf Hall and Bring Up the Bodies, I reckon I’ll have to re-read them before embarking on number 3, whenever it appears. I was sorry that a final Dalziel and Pascoe never appeared after Reginald Hill died – there was an untitled one listed on Amazon at the time which I had pre-ordered, and for a while I hoped it might have been near enough completion that it would be published. But sadly not – after a while the listing was removed and I never heard any more about it.

    • Oh, that is a disappointment, FictionFan. I’d have liked to read, it, too! I wonder if Hill’s family may have the manuscript, so that it might be published. I’d love to see it.

      As for The Mirror and the Light,it really has been an awfully long time, hasn’t it, since there was a Mantel. I hope it’ll be released soon, but, to be honest, I’m not optimistic. In the meantime, perhaps it wouldn’t be a bad idea to refresh ourselves about the first two books in that trilogy…

  12. Col

    There’s a couple of series I’m working my way through, but haven’t reached the end yet, so I’m unsure if I want the author to carry on with them or not. Lawrence Block’s Scudder series is 17 long but there hasn’t been a new one for 6 years. Not sure is he is continuing his Keller series either.

    • I’m not sure, either, Col. From what I know (and someone, please set me right if I’m wrong), he’s still actively writing, but he’s been working on other things these past few years. It’ll be interesting to see if he goes back to those two series.

  13. Pingback: Writing Links 9/11/17 – Where Genres Collide

  14. Kathy D.

    Yes, good topic: series that we wish would never end and those we wish had ended earlier. I will be tactful and not discuss those which came to an end long before the authors realize it.
    I enjoy so many series: Some are by Donna Leon, Sara Paretsky, Helene Turston, Fred Vargas, Andrea Camillieri, Sarah Ward, Eva Dolan, Elly Griffiths and Arnaldur Indridasson. Some by Rex Stout and David Rosenfelt when I need lightness and fun. And Alexander McCall Smith’s Precious Ramotswe when I need some kindness and sanity in my reading.
    I am disappointed that Adrian Hyland stopped writing his Emily Tempest books, and also that I haven’t seen any more Malla Nunn books about Emmanuel Cooper. I also wish Peter May would continue his Lewis Trilogy into a quintet or quartet.
    And I believe that Ruth Galloway may be off the book pages after the next book, the 10th one in Elly Griffiths’ series. After I finish that book, I’ll go into post-good-book slump.
    And then there are so many series where I’ve read one or two books or want to read one book (can’t commit to more books).

    • There are so many fine series, aren’t there, Kathy? I think that’s part of why people’s TBRs are the way they are. At least mine are. I’d like to see more from Hyland, Nunn, May, and Griffiths, and it’ll be interesting to see what, if anything, those authors do.

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