I think we both know what is a series and a stand-alone, so let's skip the introduction part, and get down to a little Pros and Cons list I made to decide which format is better.
Pros and Cons of a series:
Pro: The story is longer, giving fans more satisfactions.
Con: The story might actually drag due to the need to expand story-lines through a few books.
Pro: We get to know the characters better.
Con: In order for the series to continue, characters might keep adding, making readers hard to really recognize, much less connect with a character.
Pro: The world-building might be more completed and solid.
Con: With more and more rules/details, there might actually be contradictions between different things.
Pro: For the publisher: to milk out all possible profits of a famous series.
Con: Readers have to spend a LOT of money to buy the whole series.
Pro: You get to see your favorite characters again!
Con: Cliffhanger scenes are NOT good for health.
Pros and Cons of a stand-alone novel:
Pro: Fast-paced story.
Con: Not flushed out details.
Pro: I love open endings!
Con: Having to say good-bye to the characters at the end of the book.
Pro: Good way to address teenage or even social issues.
Con: Not much room for sub-plots, complex story-lines and world-building. (Unless you plan on writing a 700-page platinum novel. I am talking average YA size here, 250-400 pages.)
Con: On the stand-alones' behalf, I have never read any stand-alone book, sorry ;P
So, what do you think? Which one's better, series or stand-alones?
Personally, I lend towards reading a series. No, not because I haven't read any stand-alone before, but because with series I get to keep reading about the same set of characters that I've grown to love and cared for, instead of having to say good-bye to them after a short-300-pages journey. When I write a review, I give ratings with proportions like this: Plot (5): Characters (3): World-building (2), but I actually really cared about a character in a book, even if it was a character that I didn't really love. I just like seeing them again and again, I don't why though.
The only series I have dropped (I haven't dropped a lot of series, actually) because I really hate the main protagonist is the House of Night series. I have read a lot about people thinking P.C. Cast is just dragging the plot to make it to the 12th book, personally, the plot is still fine to me, a little annoying at times, but still okay, but I really, really, hated Zoey. She kept saying she didn't want to be a slut or ho or something, well then, stop flirting with boys and make a choice already! I just get so frustrated with Zoey and her relationship with Heath, Erik, Stark, Kolona and whoever is out on the street that is a "vampyre", using the term in the book. She is a giant slut with her playing with all these guys' emotions like that, no matter if it is intentional. Also, I really hate her attitude, so full of herself. And what on Earth did she do that deserved to be so blessed? She is brave. Well, all of her friends are brave, heck, even Neferet is brave in her own way, so why does she get all the attention? It really annoys me how people around Zoey are just content with hanging all over her. That girl is poison, I wouldn't get near her ;P
Okay, long rants aside, I love series because of the characters but I am ready to read some stand-alones soon, maybe on my next order of books, I'll pick some;)
What do you guys think of series and stand-alones? Which one do you prefer? What kind of stand-alones do you recommend an amateur like me read? Comment below! I'm looking forward to hear(read?) your thoughts!