What Are The Longest-Running Book Series?

There are times when we get too invested in the characters and plot that we don’t want to stop flipping the pages. Knowing each individual deeper, seeing him tackle new issues, uncover mysteries, and seek resolution from one volume to another is undoubtedly a rewarding adventure. No surprise, as reading another book from a long series provides a sense of comfort and closeness, given that you get to return to the characters, arcs, and authors you’ve already trusted to deliver. If you haven’t read long book series yet, here are some must-read ones that you should check out!

The Guin Saga (Kaoru Kurimoto)

Initially planned to run for an impressive number at 100 volumes, The Guin Saga had over 130 books, plus 22 side-story novels. Written by Kaoru Kurimoto, the series revolves around the mysterious hero with a leopard head named Guin, who can only remember his fighting instinct and nothing else. Guin starts his journey in the lands of the Middle Country, a world brimmed with demons, epic creatures, intrigue, peril, and magic. The Guin Saga has sold more than 30 million copies worldwide and has already been published in different languages.

The Boxcar Children (Gertrude Chandler Warner)

Aimed for the kids, The Boxcar Children is a children’s book series written initially by  Gertrude Chandler Warner, an American first-grade school teacher, and first released in 1924. Warner only penned the first 19 stories, while other writers continued the now nearly 160-title series. More books are being released each year, but still includes the byline “Created by Gertrude Chandler Warner.”

The Boxcar Children tackles the story of four orphaned kids, named Jessie, Benny, Henry and Violet, and live in a jilted boxcar in the forest. They soon met and lived with their kind and rich grandfather and went on different adventures within the community and other places they visit. It was adapted to a film in 2014, while its sequel was released in 2018.

Discworld (Terry Pratchett)

For fantasy books lovers, Terry Pratchett’s Discworld is another long book series to binge-read on. Its first novel, “The Colour of Magic”, was released in 1983 and now has over 40 titles in its more than three-decade run. The series is set on a planet called Discworld, featuring fantasy, folklore, mythology, and fairy tale plots, but use them for analogies to real-world political, scientific, religious, economic and cultural issues.

The Baby Sitters Club (Ann M. Martin)

The Baby Sitters Club is a novel series mainly written by Ann M. Martin. Initially meant to be a four-book series, she penned the first 36 novels but has now over 200 titles in its 14-year run. Ghostwriters contributed to the subsequent stories, with Martin estimated to have written about 60 to 80 of the total books. The story centers on a group of friends running a babysitting service at the fictional locale of Stoneybrook in Connecticut and how they deal with their day-to-day problems.

The Destroyer (Warren Murphy and Richard Sapir)

First published in 1971, The Destroyer circles on the story of a Newark cop named Remo Williams, who has been framed for a heinous crime and was sentenced to death. However, the government faked his to tap him as an operative for the secret organization CURE that protects the country through methods beyond the law. Williams was trained to be an assassin, and his action-filled missions and adventures continued for over the subsequent 150 novels.

Nancy Drew (Carolyn Keene)

Running from 1930 to 2003, Nancy Drews is a mystery series with 175 books plus spin-offs, written collectively by different authors under the pseudonym Carolyn Keene. It features a teenage amateur detective, Nancy Drew, who lives with his widowed father in California. While his father advises him to live a normal teenage life, Nancy often finds herself in trouble trying to solve mysteries and crimes. Through the years, the character has evolved to match the current era and the taste of the market, making it a popular character worldwide. Aside from the book’s success selling over 80 million copies across the world, Nancy Drew has also been adapted into films, television shows, and computer games. 

The Gunsmith (J.R. Roberts)

The Gunsmith is an adult western detective series, with now nearly 400 books, featuring J.R. Robert’s character – Clint Adams. An ex-lawman, Adams now earns a living by being a gun trader. In the first book, he found three beautiful women and agreed to bring them to Mexico to reunite them with Con Macklin. What was supposed to be a smooth journey, Adams finds himself in trouble with Macklin and his army, wanting him to be dead. 

Long, Tall Texans (Diana Palmer)

Written by Diana Palmer, Long, Tall Texans is a contemporary romance series about self-willed women and the raunchy cowboys in the fictional town of Jacobsville, Texas. It has now over 50 books since its first title, “The Founding Father”, was released in 2003. Palmer also released other single novels and series such as Wyoming, Soldier of Fortune, and Hutton & Co. to delight every romance reader around.

Those are some of the longest-running book series that may take many hours in your day but are undoubtedly worth your time. Happy reading!