Six For Sunday – Showing Some Series Love: Favourite First Book In A Series

Before I even say good morning I’m going to go right ahead and tell you I’m cheating on this prompt. I couldn’t leave it at just six so instead there are six MG, six YA and six adult books… Now I’ve got that off my chest good morning! Now we’re into May we’ve left our TBRs behind us and instead we’re showing some of our favourite series some love!

Six for Sunday is a weekly meme hosted by the lovely Steph at ALITTLEBUTALOT. You can find a list of prompts for April, May and June here

Favourite First Book In A Series

This was a bit of a difficult prompt for me because generally if I don’t love the first book in a series I don’t make it to the second! Plus some of these I read so long ago I can’t really remember the specifics of the first book in the series and just that I love the series as a whole… Also what counts as a series? I’ve counted anything with more than one book, so while there are some long series in here I’m also showing some duologies and trilogies some love.

Five On A Treasure Island by Enid Blyton

About The Book…

The very first Famous Five adventure, featuring Julian, Dick, Anne, not forgetting tomboy George and her beloved dog, Timmy! There’s a shipwreck off Kirrin Island! But where is the treasure? The Famous Five are on the trail – looking for clues – but they’re not alone! Someone else has got the same idea. Time is running out for the Famous Five, who will follow the clues and get to the treasure first?

I can’t remember how old I was when I first read the Famous Five but I think I was fairly young, my parents got me a box set that contained the first five books and I devoured them! It’s one of the first long series I remember collecting every book from, I didn’t read them all in order but I read them all! I think if I were to pick them up as an adult I would probably pick up on some of the problematic themes that have been spoken about more recently, but as a child I adored travelling on an adventure with these five and solving mysteries alongside them

Everdark by Abi Elphinstone

About The Book…

It is midnight in Crackledawn – a midnight full of magic. Sea dragons stir in the depths of the ocean, silver whales surface beneath the moon and sand goblins line the shores. Everyone is waiting for the phoenix, the guardian of the kingdom’s magic, to rise up from the forests of Everdark.

But there is no sign of the phoenix tonight. Something else surges up out of Everdark instead: a harpy bent on stealing Crackledawn’s magic.

It is up to an eleven-year-old girl called Smudge and an eccentric monkey called Bartholomew to set sail beyond the legendary Northswirl and stop the harpy before it’s too late.

So, grab your compass and roll down your sail – the first adventure in THE UNMAPPED CHRONICLES is about to begin…

This was only a short story to begin The Unmapped Chronicles but what a start it was! I defy anyone to pick this up and not fall in love with Smudge and Bartholomew! It was a great introduction to this world and Rumblestar only made it better!

Nevermoor: The Trials Of Morrigan Crow by Jessica Townsend + Sophie’s Snail by Dick King-Smith + Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone by J. K. Rowling + Cogheart by Peter Bunzl

Nevermoor is only a very recent read of mine but I was hooked from pretty early on! I adored the concept and wouldn’t mind a stay at the Hotel Deucalion! I’ve not read Wundersmith yet but Nevermoor sets up the promise of a wonderful series. Sophie’s Snail is a childhood read, I was a little bit of a tom boy and I loved this slightly grumpy opinionated little girl with her collection of pets! How could any post talking about wonderful first books not include Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone?! It’s not my favourite book in the whole series but what an introduction to the world of Hogwarts and the Golden Trio! I was nine when this was first published, although I was introduced to it a little later, it was our class read my final year of primary school I was so lucky to grow up with Harry Potter, the excitement leading up to the publication of the next book and the race to finish it to make sure no-one else spoiled it! My final middle grade choice is Cogheart it was darker than I expected in parts but I loved heading off on an adventure with Lily, Robert and of course Malkin the fox!

Fearless by Francine Pascal

About The Book…

Fearless introduces us to Gaia Moore, a girl born without the gene for fear. Gaia’s mother was murdered, and her father, Tom Moore, a famous covert antiterrorist mastermind, is in hiding. Now 17 years old, Gaia is living in New York City with Tom’s CIA friend, George, and his wife, Ella. Gaia is a prime target for terrorists and is in constant danger, but she is trained in all forms of combat so she can defend herself. Like Buffy and Xena, Gaia Moore is a force.

But she is also a high school student, trying to be like everyone else. As her friendships develop, we see that Gaia is in many ways a typical teen — when she’s not busy getting herself into and out of dangerous situations, righting wrongs, avenging hurts, and solving mysteries.

Admittedly it’s been at least 15 years since I read this book so I may well be looking back with rose tinted glasses firmly in place but teenage Sarah loved this story! Gaia is a teenage girl born without the fear gene, her dad works for the CIA and her uncle is a criminal mastermind! What’s not to love?!

One Of Us Is Lying by Karen McManus

About The Book…

Yale hopeful Bronwyn has never publicly broken a rule.

Sports star Cooper only knows what he’s doing in the baseball diamond.

Bad boy Nate is one misstep away from a life of crime.

Prom queen Addy is holding together the cracks in her perfect life.

And outsider Simon, creator of the notorious gossip app at Bayview High, won’t ever talk about any of them again.

He dies 24 hours before he could post their deepest secrets online. Investigators conclude it’s no accident. All of them are suspects.

Everyone has secrets, right?

What really matters is how far you’ll go to protect them.

I’ll be honest this isn’t a book I ever expected to be sharing in a post like this, only because I never expected a follow up! I thought this was the perfect standalone book and I admit to be skeptical when a sequel was announced but I adored catching up with Bayview High in One Of Us Is Next!

Northern Lights by Philip Pullman + Everless by Sara Holland + Gilded Cage by Vic James + Zoey Fools Around by Katherine Applegate

I loved Northern Lights when I was a teenager and it definitely held up when I recently re-read it! Still want my own daemon… The whole concept of Everless and the world of Sempera was dark but wonderful, I loved both books in this duology! Gilded Cage is the first in the Dark Gifts trilogy, it tells the story of a different magical Britain and I loved it! The series is only a few years old but might be time for a re-read… Finally Zoey Fools Around, I’m pretty sure this series hasn’t held up in the period between my teenage years and now, I never actually owned a book in this series but I did raid both my school and local libraries to read this series, it dealt with sex, addiction and death and I remember feeling so grown up reading them!

The Birthday by Carol Wyer

About The Book…

One hot summer’s afternoon, five-year-old Ava Sawyer went to a party. She never came home …

When five-year-old Ava Sawyer goes missing from a birthday party at a local garden centre, the police are bewildered by the lack of leads. That is until two years later, when Ava’s body is found and another little girl, Audrey Briggs, goes missing. Audrey also attended that party …

Leading the investigation is Detective Natalie Ward. A mother of two teenagers, this case chills her to the bone, and is a disturbing reminder of the last job she worked on. One that ended very badly.

Natalie soon discovers that Ava’s mother has some worrying gaps in her alibi and as she digs deeper, she’s sure Ava’s father is not telling the full story. And what did the owner of the garden centre Elsa see that day? Something that she’s not telling Natalie …

Just as Natalie is facing up to the grim possibility that Ava and Audrey were killed by someone close to home, another little girl from the party doesn’t come home from her ballet lesson. Can Natalie find a way to stop this killer before more innocent lives are taken?

This is the first of Carol’s crime series I’ve read, she previously wrote the Detective Robin Carter series that I loved but I’ve been completely hooked by this Detective Natalie Ward series since I grabbed this first in the series. Natalie has been through a lot in the first six books and I cannot wait for book seven!

Natural Causes by James Oswald

About The Book…

When Edinburgh police find the killer of a prominent city elder less than twenty-four hours after the crime, they are justifiably pleased. So the murderer has killed himself; that just saves the time and cost of a trial. But a second murder days later bears haunting similarities to the first, even though once more the murderer swiftly confesses and kills himself.

Detective Inspector Anthony McLean is investigating the discovery of a dead girl, walled up in the basement of an old Edinburgh mansion. She has been brutally murdered, her internal organs removed and placed around her in six preserving jars. The evidence suggests this all happened over sixty years ago, an attempt to re-enact an ancient ceremony that by trapping a demon in the dead girl’s body would supposedly confer immortality on the six men who took one of her organs each.

McLean’s grandmother – the woman who raised him after his parents were killed when he was a young boy – dies after months in a coma following a stroke. On top of this he has to investigate a series of unusual, violent suicides and a cat-burglar who targets the homes of the recently dead. But as another prominent Edinburgh businessman is killed, he begins to suspect that there may be a connection between the murders, the suicides and the ritual killing of the girl found in the basement. The same names keep cropping up. He just can’t find a rational explanation as to how that connection works.

As he digs deeper, and as the coincidences stack up, McLean is forced to consider an irrational explanation. Could there really be something evil stalking the city he has sworn to protect? And if so, how on earth can he hope to stop it?

Natural Causes might be the first book in the Inspector Mclean series but it’s not actually the first book I read, I accidentally started with book three! But still a crime series set in Edinburgh with a slight supernatural twist what’s not to like! As a bonus the narrator on the audiobooks is brilliant!

The Surgeon by Tess Gerritsen + Rivers Of London by Ben Aaronovitch + The Cost Of Living by Rachel Ward + Dark Game by Rachel Lynch

The Surgeon came free with Company magazine one month back in the day and I was hooked! The books were pretty graphic, the author is a doctor and was not afraid to put her anatomy knowledge to use! They definitely felt darker than the TV series they inspired, I have some catching up to do with this series though! Rivers Of London is another crime with supernatural twist series, the audiobooks are narrated by Kobna Holdbrook-Smith and are PERFECT! More crime next (do any other genres in adult fiction really do series?) The Cost Of Living is a cosy crime series featuring Ant and Bea who work together at the local supermarket but somehow find themselves in the middle of crimes and undertaking a little investigation of their own! It’s a lovely change from the slightly dark crime I often read! Finally Dark Game the first in the DI Kelly Porter series from Rachel Lynch, set in the beautiful Lake District I do love this series! It gives a great balance of self contained crimes that mean you could pick up any book and enjoy the story and overarching character development that adds a little extra for those coming back to the lakes repeatedly!

They were my #SixforSunday! If you’ve taken part leave a link to your post below and I’ll be sure to check it out!

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