The Iron King = Iron Fey 1
The Iron Daughter = Iron Fey 2
The Iron Queen = Iron Fey 3
Summer's Crossing = Iron Fey ... 3.5?
There's something funny about that list, and I don't just mean the word "iron," which starts to look a little weird when you use it seven times in a row. No, I'm talking about that .5. Where on earth did that come from?
(Don't worry, I'll tell you!)
It came from a new trend. Many authors are now writing novellas, which are then being released as ebooks, which are meant to get you interested in a new series (like The Strange Case of Finley Jayne by Kady Cross) or else to tide you over until the next book in a series comes out (like Summer's Crossing by Julie Kagawa).
(Note: If you have an ereader, or don't mind reading on the computer, you too can pick up these freebies!)
Personally I think these ebook novellas are a great idea. I love getting a taste of the characters, their world, and the author's writing style. In the (strange) case of Finley Jayne (Steampunk Chronicles 0.5), for example, it got me interested in a series I might otherwise not have picked up. "Steampunk" itself isn't a big draw for me, but I really enjoyed Finley's dual personality -- like Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde -- combined with her humor and courage.
The Short Second Life of Bree Tanner (Twilight 3.5) was a little different. Stephenie Meyer had written that material for herself, then decided to release it later as a fundraiser and a fan treat. It came after all the Twilight books were already out -- like a popsicle after a big summer picnic. Even though it wasn't directly about Bella or the Cullens, I definitely enjoyed seeing more of the story that I already knew and loved.
And then there's Summer's Crossing, which I downloaded but haven't read yet (because I haven't read Iron Fey 1-3, so I can't start with 3.5!). Like Meyer did in Bree Tanner, Julie Kagawa uses a different narrator from the rest of the series to show fans a new side to the story and the world. From what I've heard, he's a popular character, and readers were happy to get inside his head.
What about y'all? Do you like these ebook extras? Do you bother to read them, or are they like the special features on a DVD that you never watch? Are there any others besides the three I've listed here that you enjoyed or are looking forward to? If you could pick any series to have the author write a bonus novella, which would it be?