Serial Questions

This post follows a discussion I had with some students at MPOW - I'd read Fire, the follow-up to Graceling and asked them about the idea of sequels, series and follow-ups.

Here's where the confusion started: Fire takes place in the same world as Graceling, but with a completely different set of characters. Does that make it a sequel? The argument could go both ways. What about a book like Leaven of Malice. It's part of a trilogy. Does sequel apply to the second book of two, or do we use "series"?

Mystery and science fiction authors often write entire series, and we don't talk about the "sequel" to the first book, we usually talk about the "follow-up". And what about books like Wide Sargasso Sea. Is that a sequel toJane Eyre? A follow-up?

How do we break down the differences when we talk to students about books? Does it matter?

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