6 Series Worthy of a Weekend Bender
I don't know about you, but lately, I’ve been reduced to watching Law & Order SVU reruns from the '90s …for the third time. Netflix just isn't cutting it any longer. So, I've switched gears from binge-watching to binge-reading. (Replace one habit with another — I'll deal with that issue at some other point.) Here are six series totally worthy of a weekend bender: books so good they demand to be devoured in a single, non-stop interval. You won't pick up your head until Monday comes knocking.
1. Divergent by Veronica Roth
This is one is an obvious choice. If you haven't already jumped on the bandwagon, get to it! You want to devour this trilogy over one weekend so you can see the movie before it disappears from theaters.
The series is set a dystopian Chicago with a society separated into five factions, each dedicated to a specific human virtue. At age 16, adolescents are allowed to choose which virtue they wish to pursue, but for Beatrice Prior, our strong-willed protagonist, that choice is an epic one between family and her true self, and later, a choice between potential self-destruction and saving the ones she loves.
2. The Maze Runner by James Dashner
This series is also set to hit big screens soon and my readerly friends haven't stopped raving about it. A group of boys whose memories have been wiped clean wake up on a mysterious land known as the Glade. Together they must navigate the treacherous maze of stonewalls and slimy creatures that entraps them while attempting to regain their lost memories in order to uncover how and why they were sent here. In each installment, the boys are forced to navigate new worlds of mystery, riddle, and deceit in order to accomplish their ultimate mission. The first in the series arrives in theatres September 19.
3. The Lunar Chronicles by Marissa Meyer
Who doesn't love the whimsy of a good fairytale? In this best-selling sci-fi series from Marissa Meyer, heroines from three of our most beloved fairytales — Cinderella, Little Red Riding Hood, and Rapunzel — get a kick-ass, futuristic reincarnation, their mystic tales redrafted in a world of cyborgs, spaceships, satellites, and androids.
Cinder (Cinderella) is a cyborg mechanic called to help Prince Kai fix his broken android; Scarlet (Little Red Riding Hood) enlists the help of Wolf, an infamous street fighter, to help find her not-so-innocent missing grandmother; Cress (Rapunzel) is a talented hacker, having honed her skills over the course of her satellite imprisonment. Eventually, the three unite to overthrow the wicked Lunar queen and save the world from a fatal plague.
4. The Dwellers Series by David Estes
The chilling dystopian world of David Estes Dwellers series will immediately suck you in, and you better get comfortable because you’ll be living in this underworld of dirt and rock all weekend. In this new society called the Tri-Realms, the Earth has become inhabitable and humans have been forced to live underground, yet political corruption and class division still permeate society. Each installment centers on a new realm of this splintered society and each plot is packed with page-turning action including prison escapes, family secrets, evil dictators, war, presidential assassination attempts, and cross-class romance.
5. The Chemical Garden Series by Lauren DeStefano
A genetic engineering experiment gone wrong has reduced the lifespans of humans to 25 years for men and 20 for women. Awaiting an anecdote, the world has become one teeming with crime, poverty, fraught orphans, and young teen girls fearful of being kidnapped and forced into polygamous marriages in order to bear children. Sixteen-year-old Rhine, our heroine, is one such kidnapped teen who, in a race against time, must attempt to escape her new husband’s lavish mansion and reunite with her family all the while navigating a world of mad scientists, bloody corpses, forbidden loves, fiery resistors, and a seedy ring mistress leading a menagerie of girls.
6. The Uglies by Scott Westerfield
Remember all the things you used to obsess over as a teen? I’ll admit, I myself could be a tad materialistic in my adolescent preoccupations, but Scott Westerfield takes teen obsession to the extreme in this young adult series. In the beautiful post-scarcity dystopian world of the Uglies, major cosmetic surgery has become the norm and at age 16 everyone gets to look like a supermodel. Transformed from an “Ugly” to a “Pretty,” teens are then welcomed into a luxurious high-tech paradise where life is exciting, lavish, and carefree, but is this engineered world of perfection really all it’s cracked up to be?
Westerfield’s intricately crafted future world, while championing individualism over conformity, brings a critical eye to our own obsession with beauty, popularity, fame, and celebrity gossip.
One more thing you need for a weekend bender: SNACKS. You're welcome:
Image: Cora Foxx/Bustle