Book Recaps: Yay or Nay?

What do you think about authors recapping the previous book before the first chapter?

For readers who are invested in a series, waiting for the next installment can be a challenge, particularly if it’s been a while since they last picked up the story. In such cases, some authors choose to provide a recap of the previous book at the beginning of the next. While this can be helpful for readers, it also has its pros and cons.


One advantage of providing a recap is that it helps readers remember the important events of the previous book. This is especially useful if it’s been a while since they read the previous installment, as they may not remember all the details. A recap can also be helpful if a reader is new to the series and hasn’t read the previous book, as it allows them to jump in without feeling lost.

Another advantage of recapping the previous book is that it can help set the tone for the next one. If the previous book ended on a cliffhanger or with a significant event, recapping it at the beginning of the next book can help build excitement and anticipation for what’s to come.

Of course, even if a recap is provided, you can always skip it if you don’t need it!


On the other hand, there are also some potential drawbacks to providing a recap. For one, it can take up valuable space in the new book that could be used for new content. Some readers may find recaps tedious and prefer to skip them, while others may feel that the recap is unnecessary if they remember the previous book well enough.

Another potential issue with recapping the previous book is that it can spoil the ending for readers who haven’t read it yet. While authors can try to be vague and avoid major spoilers, there’s always a risk that readers will learn something they didn’t want to know yet.

One last issue is that the recap can be provided, but it isn’t very good! And it doesn’t remind you of things you’re supposed to know and remember.


Ultimately, whether or not an author should provide a recap of the previous book is a decision that depends on the particular series and its readership. If the series has a complex plot or a large cast of characters, a recap can be especially helpful. On the other hand, if the previous book is still fresh in readers’ minds and the plot isn’t overly complicated, a recap may not be necessary.

Another factor to consider is the author’s writing style and the pacing of the new book. If the author has a fast-paced writing style and the new book jumps right into the action, a recap may slow down the momentum and detract from the overall experience.

In the end, it’s up to the author to decide whether or not to provide a recap of the previous book. While there are both pros and cons to doing so, what’s most important is that the author stays true to their vision for the series and delivers an engaging, satisfying story that keeps readers coming back for more.


About Nemo

A lover of kittens and all things sparkly, Nemo has a degree in English Literature and specialises in reviewing contemporary, paranormal, mystery/thriller, historical, sci-fi and fantasy Young Adult fiction. She is especially drawn to novels about princesses, strong female friendships, magical powers, and assassins.

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