We Asked: What Is Your Favorite Book Series?

At least, what is your favorite book series besides Harry Potter? The broom-wielding wizard swept the competition, scoring the most votes by far, so a tip of the Sorting Hat to him. Here are the answers that were printed in the June issue.

About two years ago, my sister introduced me to the China Bayles mysteries, by Susan Wittig Albert. In each book, China and her pals sleuth and solve crimes in their Texas town. The plots are fun, but what I love most is reading about the spice store owned by the protagonist. The pages overflow with tips on growing herbs and cooking—they entertain and educate me all at once.

—posted by Rosemary

Maud Hart Lovelace’s Betsy-Tacy books, which document the devoted friendship of Betsy Ray and Tacy Kelly. They taught me a timeless truth: A girl’s dearest friends are a real gift. To pass on this lesson to future generations, I often give the first volume of this 1940s-era series to my friends’ newborn daughters.

—posted by Molly

The title character of the Isabel Dalhousie novels, by Alexander McCall Smith, is an editor at the fictional publication Review of Applied Ethics. Through her work, Isabel helps others with the philosophical problems that complicate their lives. I’m intrigued by the dilemmas she grapples with, and over the years I have grown attached to the warm, realistic supporting characters in the series, including Isabel’s love interest, her niece, and her housekeeper.

—posted by Emily

Published between 1940 and 1950, Conrad Richter’s Awakening Land series tracks the life of a woman named Sayward Luckett as she grows from barefoot adolescent to town matriarch. I like to reread the series every few years. The first time, I was a young mom and identified with Sayward’s transition from wife to mother. Years later, I could relate to her marital stress and her challenges with raising teenagers. Whenever I’m in conflict, it helps me to think, What would Sayward Luckett do?

—posted by Molly

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