A lot of YA series are now pushing out these short stories (the cool kids call them novellas) in between books in the series. So, there will be, say, Book 1, Book 2, Book 2.5. The Book 2.5 is a story that takes place in the world of the series but is not integral to the plot (i.e. you don’t have to read Book 2.5 to follow the story in Book 3) and could be the side story of a main character or minor character and could told in a different POV.
Also, you may have guessed by the term “short story,” but novellas are typically between 100-200 pages.
All very interesting, I thought. Except for one small fact: I’d never bothered to read one. Then that changed when I heard that Destroy Me (Shatter Me #1.5) was told from Warner’s point of view. HECK YES! Sign me up!
5 Reasons Why You Should be Reading YA Novellas
If you’re late to the novella-reading scene like me, it’s ok. You’ve got plenty of time. If you’re still not convinced, then I’ll give you a little push.
Here are a few reasons you should be reading series novellas
1. Get more one-on-one time in your favorite settings/worlds. Especially for series that have so much going on, it’s nice to take a break from the drama and have a little laid-back fun. Plus, you only get so much time in a particular world, so use this excuse to “explore” a bit more.
2. Learn character back-storys. Many novellas go back in time or cover a lapse in time between books. This shows another side of our fave characters or can reveal their origin story.
3. Cheat on your reading goal for the year. You didn’t hear this from me, but…if you’re short on time and you’re only a few books away from your goal OR you just want a little boost, read a novella! They’re short sweet and they totally count. (I think.)
4. Spend less money. You could argue that novellas are cheap (between $1-3) because they’re short, and you would be right. But still. Cheap fun is still good fun.
5. Have a better sense of depth and understanding of the story. Translation: one up your friends by knowing more than they do about the book, story and characters. I didn’t say these reasons to read novellas were altruistic. 🙂
Top Novellas To Read
To name a few (this is definitely not an exhaustive list):
- The Girl of Fire and Thorns: The Shadow Cats, The Shaddowed Mountain
- Throne of Glass: The Assassin and the Desert, The Assassin and the Empire, The Assassin and the Underworld, The Assassin and the Pirate Lord
- Through the Ever Night: Roar and Liv
- Shatter Me: Destroy Me
- Delirium: Hana, Annabel, Raven
- The Iron Fey: Winter’s Passage, Summer’s Crossing, Iron’s Prophecy
- Cinder: Glitches, The Queen’s Army
- Shadow and Bone: The Witch of Duva
- Seraphina: The Audition
- Masque of the Red Death: Glitter and Doom
- For Darkness Shows the Stars: Among the Nameless Stars
What YA novellas have you read and enjoyed? If you haven’t read a novella, was has held you back?