I'm one of those people who prefers to read a series of novels in order. Usually, books in a series include a list in the front, but not always. And it's not always complete or in the proper order.
However, rather than read the front matter and speculate, there's a database called FictFact providing the order and release dates of books in popular series. Like, oh, for instance, the Spenser series by Robert B. Parker.
In fact, FictFact is running a contest this month in which you could win a $50 Amazon.com gift card.
Sound interesting? I thought it might. :)