Monday, 8 July 2013

Grumble Grumble: Books With Unsatisfactory Endings

We've all read them. Books which start off great, sucking you in, leading you along a happy path of escapism, only to dump you with a resounding thump at that the last page. Grrrrr. I've just had a run of them and it's left me feeling justifiably ticked off. So I thought I'd share a little rant with you about two such books that really got up my nose. The first is:

Saving Wishes by G.L Walker-Smith (Goodreads

Firstly, who wouldn't be intrigued by a book with a cover like this?
Then the blurb . . . 
For Charli Blake, being seventeen is a tough gig.
She's been branded a troublemaker, her reputation is in tatters and she's stuck in Pipers Cove, a speck of a town on the coast of Tasmania. Thankfully, it's temporary. 

Her lifelong dream of travelling the world is just months away from becoming reality. All she has to do is ride out the last few months of high school, which is easier said than done thanks to a trio of mean girls known as The Beautifuls. When Adam D├ęcarie arrives in town, all the way from New York, life takes an unexpected turn. His arrival sets off a chain of events that alters her life forever, convincing her of one thing. Fate brought him to her. Saving Wishes is the story of a girl who doesn't quite fit the life she's living, and the boy who helps her realise why.

Sounds great, doesn't it? 
It is. 
I really enjoyed it because:

Tasmania is such a fresh setting.  
I've never read a book set in Tasmania before, have you?

The characters are fun and interesting.
Especially Charli. She's an intriguing girl, definitely scarred by her strange upbringing (She lives with her brother) All she wants is to leave her tiny life to explore the world with her best friend. 
And then there's Adam. He's pretty special too. Trouble is, he couldn't be more different to Charli if he had landed here from Uranus. 

And that's were the ending started going pear-shaped for me.  

How can an author write a book with such disimilar characters who fall so plausibly in love, but with no possibility of a happy ending?  That's what Saving Wishes is all about. 

As I say . . .  grrrrr.

It really felt that G.J. Walker-Smith was setting up a series and it didn't matter how she twisted her reader's emotions to get the much needed book two out of the plotline. So, I got to the end of Saving Wishes wondering why I'd bothered reading it. But if I could have left it there it would have been okay, but I can't. I'm now so invested in Charli (as I say, I really liked her) that I have to find out if it all works out for her. And I just hate that because I feel I've have been deceived and now I have to go via Zurich to get to Amsterdam, to find out what happens, if you know what I mean. 

So I say again . . .  grrrrrrr. 

Perhaps the only Saving Grace of Saving Wishes is that I didn't part with hard-earned cash for it. I got off Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

But I did purchase the next book on my grip list. 

In fact I bought the entire series . . . but the book that had me screaming blue murder and threatening to slit my wrists was  . . . 

The Iron Queen by Julie Kagawa (Goodreads)

Don't get me wrong, I think Julie Kagawa writes a brilliant book, with magical characters and INCREDIBLE world-building (Yes, I did just scream that a you). But the trouble is, after wading through The Iron King (my review here) and then The Iron Daughter (Goodreads) - both of which are essentially about a love triangel between Meghan, Puck and Ash - to finally get to The Iron Queen where I discover that Meghan and her chosen love are doomed and can never be together . . .  Arghhhhhh. This is me screaming. 

Why, I demand, stamping my foot? 
How is it possible I fell for this? 
But no matter how angry I feel, fall for it I did.

So what's the solution? 
I immediately rushed to the bookshop, spent more money and bought the final book in the series: The Iron Knight (Goodreads)

Brilliant marketing strategy Julie Kagawa and co. 
Thankfully, I had come to The Iron Fey party late so it was at least available for purchase.
Imagine if I'd had to wait a year? Grrrrrrr of note! 

But, I hear you say, it is a series, Gwynn, and you know series often end on cliffhangers. Yes, I know, grumble, grumble, but that doesn't make it right!

So did I enjoy The Iron Knight? Yes, I did. 
Did I get my money's worth? Sure. 
Did it work out to my satisfaction? Begrudgingly. 
I still don't like the Ice Boy much  . . .  Team Puck all the way . . . but that's not the point. 

Clever marketing and crafty writing left me hanging in a state of royal dissatisfaction at the end of a book and that's the point of this post.

So now it's your turn . . .  tell me about books that have left you high and dry, wondering why you even bothered.


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