So I don’t know how much I mentioned it this month, but I’ve been doing a casual version of Nano and am currently at that stage of wrapping things up in my WIP. Which means I’ve naturally been fretting about it *a lot*. I’ve mentioned before on this blog that I love endings and obviously I want this to be the culmination of everything I’ve been working on (although obviously first drafts suck and can’t be perfect… more on that another time…). My biggest fear is that I’ll have built up all this whole story and it won’t pay off- or worse, that the idea I had in my head was too crazy to begin with… Because we all know that feeling when you’re invested in something completely and then- BAM!- the ending just ruins it all. You know, the HIMYM standard of finales. Well, I decided to torture myself and think about all the ways an ending can go wrong:
Captain Corelli’s Mandolin– this, in my opinion, is an example of making a bad book worse. Even if you liked this book, the ending will make you want to scream loud enough to shake the Greek islands. It was so frustratingly unsatisfying.
13 Reasons Why– again, it’s no secret I’m not a fan. That ending though- I genuinely felt like the book was building to a crescendo and it ended up turning down the volume. I also think blaming the counsellor was one of the worst “reasons” on the list and it did a genuine disservice to the profession (and people seeking help who fear they won’t be listened to).
Breaking Dawn– this book in general is *gagworthy*. There’s a werewolf falling in love with a baby, the most perfect of all the special snowflakes Bella turning into an even more perfect snowy skinned vamp and a lot of sitting round waiting for the scary, scary villains to turn up. But even with all that buildup, spoiler alert- though who even cares at this point- the big fight doesn’t happen. It’s the kind of ending that will make you want to smash it up and burn all the little pieces (incidentally that’s how you kill a sparkly vampire- you’re welcome for the tip 😉 )
Ashes to Ashes– this isn’t the worst book in the world- but GAH! What a flaming mess that ending was! Such a letdown! I very rarely think an ending ruins a whole book- much less a series- but this did just that for me. I don’t want to get into spoilers, so you can read more on why that was here.
STAGS– while the ending didn’t totally ruin my enjoyment, it was completely ridiculous. Some of this comes down to execution, but also the twist was a shade bonkers regardless.
Caraval– I had a lot of mixed feelings about this book- but one of my biggest issues was that the last twist was a twist too far. At one point every page turn was another acrobatic turn and that last one just landed badly for me.
The Fault in Our Stars– now this is far from the worst ending on the list, however, I make it no secret that I always found the twist too obvious from the first chapter and consequently didn’t find it impactful. Also, I know this would have been a bit on the gimmicky side, but I *loved* the enigmatic ending in the book Hazel loves and thought that was gonna be how the book ended the whole way through. This comes down to personal taste, but I was disappointed that never happened. If Green had gone there, I’d have been sold.
Safe Haven– I actually liked this book- yet there was one major flaw with it that I couldn’t get behind and that was the so-called twist. Even though it was foreshadowed, it didn’t blend well with the kind of book it was and was frankly just a bit silly.
The Wasp Factory– I liked this book overall- rating it 4*- nonetheless, I couldn’t get behind that ending. It didn’t work for me. It felt like a betrayal of a lot of the themes it was working towards. Again, I don’t want to spoil it, and wouldn’t have room to discuss it at length anyway, so you check out my review if you’re interested as to why I didn’t like it.
Great Expectations– this one might seem a bit bizarre, because I don’t totally hate the ending and this is possibly my favourite Dickens… BUT the ending as we know it is not what Dickens intended and having read the original ending I have to say, I thought it fit better with the themes of the book. Still wonderful though.
So do you agree or disagree with the choices on this list? And which endings really didn’t work for you? Let me know in the comments!