Surprise Endings – Booking Through Thursday

The question this week is from Jackie:

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

So, today’s question is in two parts.

  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?

This is easy – I do like complicated plots and unexpected endings. And the book with a surprise ending that immediately came into my mind when I read this question is The Last Time They Met by Anita Shreve. It’s a love story, which had me enthralled. The ending took me completely by surprise. I just hadn’t seen it coming. Sometimes I’m tempted to look at the last few pages when I’m part way into a book and I’m so glad I didn’t with this one.

 As for my least favourite, that’s not so easy. There have been quite a few that I think are disappointing and a let down, but I tend to forget about them.

16 thoughts on “Surprise Endings – Booking Through Thursday

  1. I’ve read other Anita Shreve books, but not this one. I’ll add it to my wish list. And…I’m one of those that often flips to the end. It does’t bother me if I know what is going to happen. A lot of times the process if what makes things so interesting.


  2. Agatha Christie’s brilliant surprise solutions were what drew me to crime fiction in the first place. Of recent books, there are plenty of good examples. One that springs to mind is The Lake of Darkness by Ruth Rendell. More recently, there is Bleeding Heart Square by Andrew Taylor.


  3. To answer your questions, I do like books with complicated plots and unexpected endings. This in addition to the prose is part of what makes a book desirable to read. One book that meets these two criteria is “The Convalescent” by Jessica Anthony. It was a funny, strange book (ala Kafka), so much so that I wanted to keep reading it trying to figure out where the author was going with it all! And no, I never flip to the end.


  4. I always take a quick look at the very last sentence of the book before I start reading it:) It’s a habit I’m trying to break. I absolutely love Anita Shreve. One of the books I recently finished reading had a pretty complicated plot and an unexpected ending; The Thirteenth Tale by Diane Setterfield. I really enjoyed it.


  5. I am a reformed peeker–I used to flip to the end to see what characters were still around but then I found that I really didn’t like knowing so I stopped, cold turkey, but sometimes I am so tempted…

    I would have to say Atonement’s ending took me most by surprise. The most disappointing ending was that of A Year of Wonders–I found myself intensely disliking the characters I had loved and cared about for most of the book.


  6. I too love complicated endings. My problem is that I never see them coming! I recently read “The Pale Blue Eye” by Louis Bayard – loved it! – but definitely didn’t see the end coming.

    Happy reading!


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