Ah, The Cliffhanger
The cliffhanger. Do we love them or hate and possibly downright despise them? As readers, we have all had a special connection to the characters in our favorite novels. We love the moments when we hug our kindles tightly to our chest as tears stream down our cheeks. Not to mention those times when we pull our hair and scream aloud at the ink in front of our noses. I happen to love those moments - when the character hands me a handful of unexpected and difficult to deal with emotions. Nevertheless, is it fair for the author to give the reader an anxiety attack at the last chapter, paragraph, sentence, word of the book?
We give authors hours, days and sometimes even weeks and months of our time reading and obsessing over their stories and series. I myself have spent many a sleepless night clinging to a great read only to be a sleepy grouch monster to my family and colleagues the next day. As much time and love and passion as we put in to books are cliffhangers fair to us as readers? Is the suspense unjust and mean to the bibliophile or is it fun and exciting; leaving us begging, panting and pleading for more?
I have been forced to ask myself this very question. To any of you out there who have read A Beautiful Fate, the first book of The Beautiful Fate series, (and thank you by the way, and if not, please do!) you know about what I mean. There are some major cliffhangers at the end of chapters and the biggest of surprises greets us at the very end of the first book. It leaves the reader, myself included, gasping aloud with trembling fingers and a sweaty brow. “How can you do that?!” are the very words people have screamed at me, which is then followed by, “there had better be a second one!” The first sentence I usually cringe at and quickly give an “I’m sorry, don’t hate me.” Then second line brings a giddy, shit-eating grin to my face, because yes, there is a second book, even a third and I am thrilled that you want to continue reading my series.
As an author, I love to drawl emotion from a reader; it brings great joy to be able to connect with someone though my work. As a reader, sometimes the anxiety from a cliffhanger is a bit frustrating; I’ve spent days with my nose in this book and I have wait even longer for the outcome?!
All in all, I believe that we read because of the sheer enjoyment a well-written story can bring in to our lives. I think that a cliffhanger in a series book is an awesome feeling. We look forward to getting the answerers we so desperately need and I think we are even happy to know that we do not yet have to say goodbye to our new character friends. My favorite books always turn out to be the ones that I have a release date countdown on my desktop for their sequel.
For those of you lovely readers out there who have read my novel, I would absolutely love to hear your thoughts and comments on cliffhangers and on the ending of my own book-, I am not opposed to adding a bonus chapter to help shed a little light on a bit more of the story before book 2 arrives. Give me your thoughts- no spoilers please!!
For those of you who have not read the novel, here is your homework: read A Beautiful Fate and report back! Can’t afford it right now- I’ll give it to you! I just love to talk books! I love to talk with readers; nothing makes me happier than to talk books with a fellow book lover! You can contact me via Goodreads and Facebook- I check them each daily. Leave a comment on the blog, I read it daily as well!
Ciao and xoxo,