Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Trilogies

So, I’m 350 pages in to The Sweet Far Thing, the third book of the Gemma Doyle trilogy by Libba Bray, and I’m not even half way through!! What is it about trilogy writers? (Or series writers in general, for that matter?) The first book is a good solid 300-500 pages. The second book adds perhaps a hundred or so pages more. THEN, the third book is monstrous. A few examples illustrate my point:

The Gemma Doyle Trilogy, by Libba Bray

1. A Great and Terrible Beauty = 432
2. Rebel Angels = 592
3. The Sweet Far Thing = 832

The Twilight Series*, by Stephenie Meyer

1. Twilight = 512
2. New Moon = 608
3. Eclipse = 640
4. Breaking Dawn = ?

*The Twilight Series was originally supposed to be a trilogy, but the third book was so long they made it into two books!

The Lord of the Rings*, by J.R.R. Tolkien

1. The Fellowship of the Ring = 398
2. The Two Towers = 725
3. The Return of the King = 1137

*I think The Lord of the Rings was originally written as one book and was then broken into three books by a publisher.

His Dark Materials Trilogy, by Philip Pullman

1. The Golden Compass = 368
2. The Subtle Knife = 304
3. The Amber Spyglass = 480

The Bourne Trilogy
, by Robert Ludlum

1. The Bourne Identity = 544
2. The Bourne Supremacy = 646
3. The Bourne Ultimatum = 672

The Harry Potter Series, by J.K. Rowling

1. Harry Potter & the Sorcerer’s Stone = 309
2. Harry Potter & the Chamber of Secrets = 352
3. Harry Potter & the Prisoner of Azkaban = 448
4. Harry Potter & the Goblet of Fire = 734
5. Harry Potter & the Order of the Phoenix = 896
6. Harry Potter & the Half-Blood Prince = 672
7. Harry Potter & the Deathly Hallows = 784

Okay, so my theory doesn’t ALWAYS hold up, but it seems that publishers are more willing to let authors be verbose as the series or trilogy goes on. (Also, I have a related theory that editors and publishers get more lax about the editing process as the series and the author becomes more and more popular.)

1 comment:

blakecgriffin said...

Have I seen this somewhere else?