Serials feel interactive in a new way that breathes life into stories that might not work as longer novels, a lot like TV series. Readers get to join the journey, picking it up at any stage and hanging on for the ride as it unravels.
In Victoria's time, serialized novels were gathered into books; in our time, TV shows are collected into boxes of DVDs or Blu-ray disks. The main difference is that with TV the process repeats for subsequent seasons.
When Dickens serialized The Pickwick Papers in 1836, droves of readers crowded the docks to get the latest installment fresh off the boat--not unlike the excitement you'd have seen at a midnight release of Harry Potter.
Ronda wakes hours later to light that is low and creamy yellow. Sitting up in bed, she tries the phone number in Lanjarón. It rings and rings. Frustrated, she slams the receiver back into its black cradle.
Years later, she tries to focus on the details: the cinnamon sugar sticking to her shoulder. The thick fold of leaves overhead. The cold buttered toast wrapped in tin foil. The smell of his sweat mixed into the smell of pine needles.