Questions tagged [reading-order]

Questions about the order in which a sequence of related works should be read. In particular, where the chronological order of release may not match the order of events within the related works.

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36
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10answers
21k views

Should I read The Silmarillion before or after reading The Lord of the Rings?

I spent an extensive amount of time as an undergrad writing about and researching The Hobbit, especially in terms of Tolkien's famous essay on Beowulf. Getting a sense of what inspired Tolkien greatly ...
23
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4answers
83k views

In which order should the Sherlock Holmes stories be read?

The canonical Sherlock Holmes stories by Arthur Conan Doyle comprise: four novellas: A Study in Scarlet The Sign of Four The Hound of the Baskervilles The Valley of Fear fifty-six short stories, ...
19
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1answer
3k views

Why is the order of The Chronicles of Narnia changed from original publication?

When I originally read The Chronicles of Narnia I read an older boxset which has the books numbered in original publication order: The Lion, The Witch, and the Wardrobe Prince Caspian The Voyage of ...
17
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2answers
48k views

What order should I read the "Ender's game" series in?

Ender's Game is a very large epic science-fiction series by Orson Scott Card. To quote wikipedia: It currently consists of fifteen novels, thirteen short stories, 47 comic issues, an audioplay, and ...
17
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2answers
5k views

Do I need to read all the supplementary material for The Expanse, and in what order?

I want to read The Expanse, but I'm kind of confused about which to read first and what I actually need to read. So far as I can tell The Expanse is a series of novels that fall in roughly ...
15
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1answer
461 views

Should I read the English translation of "Khasākkinte Ithihāsam" first, or the original?

O. V. Vijayan translated his Malayalam novel ഖസാക്കിന്റെ ഇതിഹാസം (Khasākkinte Ithihāsam) to English about three decades after it was originally published, with the title The Legends of Khasak. The ...
14
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1answer
2k views

Should Go Set A Watchman be read before To Kill A Mockingbird?

Given that Go Set A Watchman takes place after To Kill A Mockingbird, we would think that we should read it second. However, Go Set A Watchman was probably a first draft of To Kill A Mockingbird. I am ...
14
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2answers
1k views

Would a reader of Jean Rhys's Wide Sargasso Sea miss anything essential without knowing about Jane Eyre?

I read Jean Rhys's Wide Sargasso Sea without ever having heard of Jane Eyre. I didn't see even it was a prequel to another work, because I try to avoid spoilers on the back of the book. What, if ...
14
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1answer
19k views

Which order is recommended for the "Commonwealth" novels?

The Commonwealth Saga of Peter F. Hamilton is comprised of several novels spanning centuries, characters and planets. Unfortunately, the publishing order does not concur with the in-universe order. ...
11
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1answer
129 views

Are you required to read any of Langdon books by Dan Brown to properly understand and enjoy the next ones?

Technically speaking, Dan Brown's Langdon books are part of a series in a common universe. But at first glance, they don't seem to be all that related to each other - more like Fleming's 007 than ...
10
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4answers
3k views

Do I need to read the Hardy Boys books in order?

The Hardy Boys books are a bunch of mystery novels, written by Franklin W. Dixon. They all focus on the Hardy Brothers, Frank and Joe. I have some of the series, but not all of them (especially not ...
10
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1answer
8k views

Do I need to read the Redwall books in any specific order?

The Redwall series by Brian Jacques is pretty long: ~40 books, iirc. They all focus on different characters, but there are lots of people that appear in lots, such as Martin the Warrior. Do I have to ...
10
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1answer
370 views

How do I get started with the Cthulhu mythos?

Having encountered a number of references to Cthulhu in various places over the years, I would like to explore the various works based in the Cthulhu mythos. Out of curiosity, I had read The Call of ...
9
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1answer
359k views

In what order should Rick Riordan's mythological series be read to make the most sense, and what is the chronological order?

As established in this question, all of Rick Riordan's mythological series take place in a single universe. I have not read any of his books, but this gave me a question. If I were to read the books ...
9
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1answer
511 views

Reading order for Brandon Sanderson's Cosmere

Brandon Sanderson has plans in place to write many books set in different worlds, but in the same Cosmere. These books include series that have already begun (eg Stormlight Archives, Elantris, ...
8
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0answers
808 views

Can I read David Mitchell's books in any order?

Though David Mitchell's novels differ wildly in style and substance, all occur within the same universe, with links between them - some subtle, some very central. I don't think the books are meant to ...
7
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2answers
3k views

Can I read the second book of "In Search of Lost Time" out of order if I can't find a good translation?

I want to read the In Search of Lost Time series out of order, because there is no good translation of the second book in my language. Is it necessary to read the book series in order? Are they ...
7
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1answer
7k views

Is there any merit to reading the Poirot novels in order?

Curtain is Poirot's last case and for fear of spoilers I have not looked up whether it is his last case because he dies. I intend to read it only after I have read all the other novels featuring him. ...
7
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0answers
105 views

Is there a canonical order to HP Lovecraft's work?

I've been a big fan of Lovecraft's works of literature and used them as inspiration for a lot of my own writing, but I've been unable to find a proper consensus on how his stories all fit together or ...
6
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2answers
205 views

For and Against different Reading Orders for Narnia

There are two common reading orders for the Chronicles of Narnia: The original publication order: The Lion, The Witch, and the Wardrobe Prince Caspian The Voyage of the Dawn Treader The Silver Chair ...
6
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2answers
261 views

Can the Odyssey be consumed independently of the Iliad?

The Odyssey is largely a sequel to the Iliad, both of them being attributed to Homer and describing events which are roughly part of a single overall story (Odysseus first fighting in the Trojan War ...
6
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1answer
4k views

Is there a specific order to read Tom Clancy works?

I found a bunch of the books, I think the first one was the The Hunt for Red October, but then I don't know whats next.
5
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1answer
2k views

Is there "required" background reading for "The Hero With a Thousand Faces"?

The influence of "The Hero with a Thousand Faces" by Joseph Campbell is well documented. I have picked up the version published in the "Collected Works of Joseph Campbell" series and have sadly found ...
5
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1answer
2k views

Is there a specific order to read Ursula Le Guin's novels and stories?

Ursula Le Guin wrote both fantasy novels (especially the Earthsea cycle) and science fiction (e.g. the Haynish cycle). The Wikipedia articles about these two cycles don't say whether a specific ...
4
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2answers
2k views

What order should I read Thomas Pynchon's novels in? [closed]

Thomas Pynchon is a writer famous for having dense and hard to read books, but is acclaimed for those books. He wrote V., The Crying of Lot 49, Gravity's Rainbow, and others. What order should I ...
4
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1answer
136 views

Can I read "Twenty Years After" by Alexandre Dumas without reading "The Three Musketeers"?

Can I read Twenty Years After (Vingt ans après) by Alexandre Dumas without reading The Three Musketeers (Les Trois Mousquetaires)? I have come across a site which says that Twenty Years After is a ...
3
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1answer
581 views

What is the chronological order of the Tales of Goldstone Wood books?

The Tales of Goldstone Wood series is notorious for non-chronological writing, and the publication order doesn't at all reflect "in-universe" time. What is the proper chronological order of the books ...
3
votes
1answer
271 views

Should I read 'A Scandal in Bohemia' before I read 'A Study in Scarlet'?

Is it important to read 'A Study in Scarlet' before 'A Scandal in Bohemia'? I have heard that the former is the first book by Sir Arthur Connal Doyle. And it gives initial insights into the character ...
3
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2answers
134 views

Should Henry 6, Part 3 be read prior to reading Richard III?

For context, this reading is entirely devoted to pleasure. I am not analyzing (academically) nor performing the plays, and my desire to read the plays derive completely from my profound affection ...
3
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1answer
2k views

In what order should the "Cemetery of Forgotten Books" series be read?

I have recently ordered the books from The Cemetery of Forgotten Books series. I know that I will be receiving The Angel's Game before The Shadow of The Wind since The Angel's Game was published after ...
2
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2answers
72 views

Should I read the original text or the guide to the text first?

As the title states: if you have a guide book to reading an author or a specific work, should you read it before, after, or alongside the work itself? I've wondered this for a while in a general sense ...
1
vote
1answer
931 views

Could I read Trials of Apollo directly after PJ and Olympians? [duplicate]

I read all of the first series, Percy Jackson and the Olympians. Years later I’m picking it back up. I didn’t know they all tied into each other, but anyhow I picked up the Trials of Apollo. Did I ...
0
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0answers
18 views

Rick Riordan Mythology Books [duplicate]

I am reading Rick Riordan books right now, and so far I have read the following books in the following order: Percy Jackson Heroes of Olympus Trials of Apollo Magnus Chase and the Gods of Asgard I ...
-3
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1answer
134 views

In what order should I read the Harry Potter series that makes the most sense?

As said I have never read the Harry Potter books but in the case that I do in what order should I read them in?