Booking Through Thursday: Twisty


On Thursday, January 28th, Booking through Thursday asked:

Jackie says, “I love books with complicated plots and unexpected endings. What is your favourite book with a fantastic twist at the end?”

  1. Do YOU like books with complicated plots and unexpected endings?
  2. What book with a surprise ending is your favorite? Or your least favorite?

Just as auto insurance quote don’t always give you the result you expect, nor do good novels, but it should be noted that a complicated plot means nothing if the characters aren’t well-drawn, and the story well-told. There are great writers who tell fairly simple stories, and great plotters who pretty much suck at storytelling. Given that, however, I do like it when a book surprises me – it doesn’t happen often. I vaguely recall being surprised by Anne Bishop’s Black Jewels trilogy, but I don’t remember if the twists came within the meat of the stories or at the end.

There’s a novel called The Stake that was completely twisty (it’s a vampire novel that opens with someone finding a body with a stake in its heart and moves forward and backward in time until the story is made clear. Richard Laymon wrote it, but it’s nothing like any of his other work…sort of melding classic horror conventions with a true crime sensibility.

And then there’s Possession by A. S. Byatt. Byatt is always difficult for me to read, and I’m not sure why…but that novel’s ending really surprised me, and not particularly pleasantly.