Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Angry with Authors

I read a book this last weekend that I really enjoyed, until the last line.

Ug.

There was so much conflict, so much struggle, so much longing and hope for something better. There were epic battles, HUGE sacrifices, and pain... And all of that would have been worth it, except for that darn last line.

I think about that sometimes, about life and goals and how we strive and hope for an ultimate outcome. We may even fight and sacrifice for that outcome, but it all comes down to that last line. Do we eventually give up? Do we hold strong until the very end?

Source
POST AMENDED: At the request of several readers, I will share that the last line was a cliff hanger. Yes, cliffhanger. I know some of us feel that's okay, and sometimes it is...but not in the very last sentence of the book. You have to give the reader some warning. And seriously, if you're going to kill half (or more) of the cast to accomplish something, don't leave your readers feeling like all the victory was stolen by the last line. Yes, I said STOLEN. *sigh* Rant over. 



Ready to guess the lie and win a book? 

Last week, Jay Noel shared SHADOW WARRIOR with us, along with two truths and one lie. Those who guessed the lie correctly were entered into a random drawing for the chance to win one of his ebooks 

Jay's game: 

1. Jay had a near-death experience in his 20's.
2. His biggest fear is being poked in the eye.
3. He went skydiving on his 40th birthday. 
And the lie is:

#3. Jay did not go skydiving for his 40th birthday. 

Way to guess those of you who got it right! And the winner is:

...DRUM ROLL...


Congrats Diane! 

And now to today's feature:

A junction between the worlds erupts.

The Gold Rush trickles to a fool’s quest and a string of stagecoach heists. In 1888, Earl Blacke makes a new start to become a better man. He escapes into the mountains, heading north. In the wilds of Oregon, a rift inside an ancient volcano opens, sending him into the future, into the present day. It also shaves thirty years off his age, thirty years to live over and atone for what he’s done.

Starting over is hard to do. In current day New York City, Daelin Long’s dream job at a publishing house goes the way of the dinosaurs her sister chases. With no money and nowhere else to go, Daelin accepts the librarian position in her sister’s dinky town in the middle of Oregon. Nestled inside ancient volcanic peaks, the town of Settler holds onto many secrets. Residents roam the streets with weirdly fashioned devices, and odd lights pulse in the night skies. People whisper of a phantom outlaw and start dying, murdered and missing their heads. Worse, Daelin’s sister is missing, and Daelin doesn’t know who to trust.

Earl knows more than he’s saying. He shares a notorious history with the phantom, one he’ll see remains buried. Keeping Daelin’s sister’s secrets is his only chance at redemption, and the only way to keep this world safe.
MARY PAX ~ M. Pax is author of the series, The Backworlds, The Rifters, and has other novels and several short stories published. Fantasy, science fiction, and the weird beckons to her, and she blames Oregon for that, a source of endless inspiration. She docents at Pine Mountain Observatory in the summers, teaching the public about the stars and the galaxy. A Bachelors of Science in Journalism, she had former lives in marketing and television before settling down to write. 

You might stumble across Mary while on a picnic out in the wilds of Oregon or at a lunch gathering with her writer gal pals, munching on brie.

Mary gave me two truths and one lie to test your "lie detector" skills. Those who figure out the lie will go into my magic hat for the chance to win BOTH eBook's: The Rifters, and The Initiate--before release. How awesome is that?

You have until Tuesday, August 26th, at 1 p.m. EDT to guess--and be sure to come back for the answer on August 27th.

TRUTH OR LIE

1. Mary stood behind Kurt Vonnegut once in line at a newstand. They spoke for hours in the gardens of Dag Hammerskjold smoking Shermans. 
2. She went on a ghost hunt in the Caribbean. On Nevis there’s a tale about a woeful bride who had a fateful wedding day.
3. On the first date with her husband unit, she hit his car. She was pretty sure there’d be no second date. Fooled her!
Which is the lie? Do you have a secret goal you're pushing toward? Have you ever given up on something and then wished you hadn't? What do you think of time rifts?

145 comments:

  1. I'll try not to mess up my last line.
    Wow, Mary - those are tough! I'm going to say the second one.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Most important line of the entire book, right?

      Delete
  2. I'm kind of dying to know what that last line was! I hope my last line is good...I think it is anyway. I've actually thought of getting it tattooed somewhere, but I have no actual desire to get a tattoo...maybe a nice embroidered pillow...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. LOL! I love that--but I'm right there with you, no tattoos. Maybe a nice framed all hanging, eh?

      Delete
  3. And now I'm curious about what the last line was, and how one line could ruin an entire book. O_o The only things I can think of right now are revealing it was all a dream, or having someone's character utterly and thoroughly derailed with a single sentence. Oi.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It happens, right? I mean, what was up with Katnis in Hunger Games #3. Yeah, I just spent the last couple years of my life battling to survive in an arena, but hey, I'm all for another hunger games! Ug. ;)

      Delete
  4. Wow, that really sucks about that last line! Don't think I've ever had a book ruined for me because of a single line before, but a last chapter did ruin an entire 12-book series for me once, so...I feel your pain!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It's the worst, right? After investing your time and efforts...

      Delete
  5. Yeah, I'm wondering what that line is, too. "And then she woke up. Phew, it was all a dream!" ~ That was the end of many, many fifth grade stories I read in my 25 year career. MANY!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. LOL. I know. Middle graders are so creative. =)

      Delete
  6. Your Gold Rush stories sound great! I have no idea which one is your lie. My total guess is #1.

    Hi, Crystal :)

    ReplyDelete
  7. I would be disappointed if I was enjoying a book and the last line ruined it... (Maybe that is why I read the end of a book before I actually read the book). [I know... I'm different :-)]

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hah! You're one of those cheaters... *squinty eye* Okay, I admit I've peeked at the end on a couple books, but just because I had a sneaking suspicion I was going to be disappointed, and knowing for sure in advance makes the blow easier.

      Delete
  8. It's sad when the end of a book (or even just the last line) disappoints.

    I'm going to guess #1 as the lie.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yeah... I mean, I'm all for a dose of reality, but I want to be happy about the ending too.

      Delete
  9. That last line is so important!

    Hi, Mary. I'm going to guess #1 is the lie.

    ReplyDelete
  10. Ha, I rewrote my last chapter of my novella because beta-readers hated my last line. Well, not everyone. There were a few who appreciated my twisted sense of humor. But alas, the majority want happy endings.

    I say the lie is #2.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It's true, and as authors who hope to make money, we better give them what they want, right? (Yes, I'm a total sell out.)

      Delete
  11. I don't quit things which I think makes me stubborn. At least so my husband says. I love time rift ideas and I believe M. Pax lied in #1.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I say it makes you determined, and all the better for it. =)

      Delete
  12. I have felt that too - when reading a book that has an ending that disappoints. in particular, The Tortilla Curtain comes to mind. Sheesh, a depressing and disappointing book!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I hate depressing books. Seriously. There's a reason I cling to the genres I read. =)

      Delete
  13. I've felt that way after reading certain books, too, so I try really hard to make my last line good.

    ReplyDelete
  14. Congrats, Diane! :)
    Endings are important. They can really make a difference on if I like a book or movie or play or not. Also, on whether we succeed or not. ^_^

    Ooh, I hope number 3 is true! Lol! I'm going with #1 today.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It's true. That final impression is what the reader will take with them long afterward. It better be epic. =)

      Delete
  15. The last line needs to be as great as the first - hate it when the ending leaves you thinking, well so what!

    I'm gonna say #1 is the lie.

    ReplyDelete
  16. Now I'm curious as to what the last line is that ruins everything. Was it all a dream? That would do it. Thanks for the feature today, Crystal.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. No, no dream, but almost as bad. =)

      Glad to have you, Mary.

      Delete
  17. I'm going to go with her hitting the hubs with her car. Mary's covers look awesome!!

    ReplyDelete
  18. I think #3 is the lie! I have given up on a few things in my life but rarely regret them!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. There are times we have to abandon something before it kills us, eh?

      Delete
  19. I was helping someone once with a draft review and he ended it like this..."and he told his mother and she set things right, but thats a tale for another day..." I told him that if he ever tried to publish his book like that I would disown him, and other violent threats. 'bad endings" is just lazy writing

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. LOL. Too true. I'm reminded of the way Stephen King ended is Dark Tower series. Lazy writing sucks.

      Delete
  20. I'm guessing #3 is the lie. But if it's true, that's a heck of a way to begin a relationship! I like your quote at the beginning.

    ReplyDelete
  21. What a great reminder that the last line is just as important as the first!

    I say the lie is #1!

    ReplyDelete
  22. But now I really want to know what that last line was. Was it a cliffhanger that means you have to read the next book? Did it ruin a characterization for you? If authors tick me off, it's usually well before the last page. (I still haven't forgiven one of my fav authors for killing one of his main characters.)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yeah... I would share it too, but I don't want to flame the book or author. I'm sure there are tonz of people who love her book, regardless.

      I know what you mean about not forgiving an author. It wasn't the characterization, it totally had to do with the plot.

      Delete
  23. One line ruined the whole book? That's actually quite impressive.

    It's really not fair, you know, to talk about something like that without disclosing.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I know, right? Takes talent...or stupidity. =)

      Yeah... I don't want to harm the author or their work in any way. I know other people love it, and who am I to be an author killer?

      Delete
  24. What a tease you are! Even if you don't feel like posting the last line and identifying the book, as least you could tell us what the sin was. I mean, some of us are still learning and I want to make sure I never make the same mistake. Oh please, please....

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Well, as long as your last line doesn't betray the happy ending by throwing it on its ear, you should be good to go.

      Delete
  25. I'm curious about the last line now. I haven't read a book where that happened to me. Normally, the last line makes me want more.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Me too, but this one didn't. After a gut-wrenching book, I was very glad to be at the end and find a happily ever after...NOT. It was a happily ever after...until the last sentence. Do you know how robbed I feel?

      Delete
  26. I'm not a fan of cliffhanger last sentences, either. After investing so much time reading a book, it feels like a rip-off if the ending isn't really an ending, and nothing is resolved.

    Hmmm, I'll guess that #1 is the fib. (Although it'd be totally cool if it isn't.)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. AGREED. The author needs to resolve the plot. If they want to leave something hanging, fine, but don't make it the major issue of the entire book, right?

      Delete
  27. I just read what I thought was the last book in a trilogy only to have that happen! I feel lied to and strung along for my money because now if I want to get any resolution...I have to buy book four. Bleh!
    Raquel Byrnes

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ug. I know! I read one series I hated, but I HAD to get through the entire thing. I was so happy when I got to book three, and soooo peeved when the series stretched into 5 novels. Gag.

      Delete
  28. Oh sheesh, I'm one of those gal pals that eats Brie with Mary and I'm still totally guessing about her lie. It feels like there is a kernel of truth in each answer, so which has the fib hidden within? I'm guessing 2.

    As one who has been pelted by tomatoes (or more accurately, Kindles) over her cliffhanger ending, I'm saying, "Dang it! Sometimes it just needs to be that way." However, like Raquel, I too have read what I thought was the last book in a series only to find out there is more. That really screws with your psyche.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It's true, sometimes they do, but it has to be done right. There has to be enough resolution. I'm waiting to dive into your series until the 3rd book is out. =)

      Delete
  29. Dang. I was sure I'd guessed Joel's lie. I'm going to try again with Mary and say, #1's the lie. But I'm really hoping it happened. I mean Kurt V!

    Guess I'll have to read that book to find out what the last line was about. It must have been some line to stir you up like this.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That or I'm easily frustrated by books. It could be either one. ;)

      Delete
  30. I have friends from Nevis, and I'm pretty sure I would have heard that story if it existed. So I'm guessing #2. I love that Lance Armstrong quote btw.

    ReplyDelete
  31. #1 seems like the obvious lie, but almost too obvious . . . so I'm going with #2. As for cliffhangers, I'm not a fan. If it's a series, of course I want to be left with wanting more, but I get disappointed with total cliffhangers too. Now I do LOVE surprise endings. The ones I never saw coming are the ones I remember for years after I've finished the book.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, surprise endings are epic, but not in the last sentence. No one wants that abrupt a surprise.

      Delete
  32. Okay, I must admit that I am seriously curious what book this was :) Anyhow, guessing #1 is the lie!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Email me if you really want to know. It was totally a book my daughter picked up and then I had to read it before her to make sure it was appropriate for a 9 year old. (It wasn't, btw.)

      Delete
  33. I'm curious about what book you were reading too! As for the lie, I think it's #1. If it isn't, I'm jealous.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I know, I'm such a tease. Maybe I'll have to do a follow up post...once I've read book 2 and been vindicated or further enraged.

      Delete
  34. I won't read a book if it has a cliffhanger ending. When it comes as a surprise, I'm too annoyed, lol

    #1 is the lie

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Me too. It totally didn't sound like it was going to be a cliffhanger.

      Delete
  35. I'm definitely don't like cliffhanger endings, especially since the time between books being published is so freakin' long. I've gotten to the point that I won't start a series until it's finished because it's just too frustrating for me.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Usually I'm that same way, but I had no indication it was going to be part of a series. Ug.

      Delete
  36. Hi Crystal. I hate it when the end of a book disappoints. I feel like throwing it across the room. That's the good thing about print books. No way am I going to throw my Kindle across the room. Cliffhangers are good at chapter endings, but not book endings unless you already have the next in the series out.

    Congrats to M Pax.

    I say #2 is the lie.

    Denise

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. LOL! I'm going to have to remember that: only buy paper so you can abuse the book if disappointed. ;)

      Delete
  37. I don't like cliffhangers. I understand why that last line would bother you.

    Love,
    Janie

    ReplyDelete
  38. I've seen the last episode of a TV show ruining the whole thing before. Although, in those cases, I pretend that episode never happened. But I've read books that the ending just ruined the whole book. So frustrating.

    As for the lie...#2...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Um, yeah MERLIN. (Stupid, stupid, stupid.)

      I wont say the ending ruined the book...or at least it might not have for most people, but it did for me.

      Delete
  39. There was no indication that it would end in a cliffhanger until the last line. That's an outrage! And gosh I'm not sure what's the life. 1 maybe, but I hope it's true

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I KNOW. There should have been some forewarning, right?

      Delete
  40. I'm going to guess the lie is number 2...
    I have The Backworlds waiting for me in my Kindle and will most likely be adding The Rifters to my TBR list as well=)
    If I can't relate to the ending of a book or it just doesn't make sense, it can be very frustrating. Especially since we allowed ourselves to get so lost within the author's world and then BAM, nada. Ah well, it's a good thing there are an infinite amount of amazing stories out there to keep our hopes afloat.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yeah, the ending really does make it or break it, right?

      Delete
  41. I have to say I like knowing beforehand that the book I'm reading is part of a series. I'd be pissed, too, if it came as a huge surprise like that. As for M. Pax, I'm going to guess that #1 is the lie.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Agreed. It stinks to be surprised that way.

      Delete
  42. I am NOT a fan of cliffhangers. I abandoned 1 or 2 YA series because book 1 didn't resolve enough because of a cliffhanger. I wonder which book....

    I hope Mary's truth is the Kurt one. That would be so cool!

    ReplyDelete
  43. I don't mind a small cliffhanger or something more to come, but NO, not something that makes you throw the book at the cat or dog or out the window. Mary's books look amazing! I'm guessing #1 is the lie. I can believe standing in line but chatting for hours...hmm.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yeah... Not all twists are good ones, eh?

      Delete
  44. Woot woot! I won! :D

    I do not like cliff hangers unless they are at the end of a chapter. It makes me want to turn the page and read more. I would hate it at the end of a book. Feels too much like you're being duped into buying the next book. Not good!

    ReplyDelete
  45. First of all, YAY for Mary's Rifters!
    As for novel endings, call me sentimental, but I tend to like endings with SOME rays of hope/love/creative solutions. I don't mind a character being bumped off but for heavens sake, don't kill 'em all, or snuff out all the glowing embers. And that goes for a series as well. Give me a partial cliffhanger or leave some threads untied but don't leave me dangling from one thin branch. OK, rant over now.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I know. There has to be a balance for all the death and mayhem, right?

      Delete
  46. I nicked a guy's new car on our first date - hit the car door against a parking meter. I was pretty sure I wouldn't have a second date. I was right. Still, I believe Mary's #3. When it's meant to be, a nice guy will forgive his car being smashed. That said, I'll go with #1 as the lie. I'm doubtful such a famous author is capable of extensive face-to-face discourse.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. LOL. Robyn, he just wasn't the right guy then.

      Delete
  47. I'll go with lie #3. I like cliffhangers on TV shows, but in a book, hmmm....

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yeah...there's just too my air time between them.

      Delete
  48. Leaving on a cliffhanger like that feels to me like a breach of trust between author and reader. I'd be mad too! Open story questions, things that clearly lead to more to come, OK, but by the end of a book I think the reader has earned some sort of resolution even if it's clearly not truly the end.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yeah, and if you're going to leave a breach, things to be answered later, at least don't do it in the last sentence.

      Delete
  49. When you invest so much time reading a book, it's such a letdown to be left hanging, so I feel your pain Crystal. I'm horrible at this game, but #1 sounds too good to be true. Congrats to Mary!

    Julie

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You totally got it! So much for being horrible at the game. =)

      Delete
  50. I'm guilty of cliff-hangers. Don't shoot! :(

    Mary is one of the most hardworking writers I know! I say the lie is number two! :) Why? No idea, but it's as good as any and I would believe anything possible with Mary. ;)

    shahwharton.com

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Won't shoot--as long as you don't write them into the last sentence.

      Delete
  51. I think number one is the lie. :)

    ReplyDelete
  52. i can't stand when a book has a bad last line and if it's cliffhangers, then ooh man!

    ReplyDelete
  53. Well now I'm totally questioning my last line! And gosh you're a tease, you know we all wanna know now, right? Right LOL

    I'm going with #2 as the lie!

    ReplyDelete
  54. I agree with you 100%; however, I've been learning that many agents and editors actually push writers to end their story on a cliffhanger. I know, I know (shakes my head). So much for resolution;)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Some do, and I think it's a wise tactic, but not on a first book.

      Delete
  55. Okay. Okay. Now I am terribly piqued by this book! It sounds like it was darn good, but just...gah! Cliffhangers. I always hate that for the final season premiers of my favorite TV shows. :( But ooooh they're so darn good.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yeah, this wasn't in a good way. I was actually really looking forward to the book being over...only to have it not be.

      Delete
  56. I think #1 is the lie. I wish M Pax the best of luck. Love her covers. :) Can't wait to read them.

    I do not like when books end with a cliffhanger. I need to have the main plot points resolved by the end of the book, even if it is part of a series. :)
    ~Jess

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Agreed. There can be other things hanging, but not MAIN plot points.

      Delete
  57. That is SO frustrating when you devote all this time to a great story and then it leaves you unsatisfied!

    ReplyDelete
  58. Oh! I got Jay's quiz wrong!!! Blast!!!

    And LOL… one of my books totally has a cliff hanger ending… ha. Maybe I should re think that… ;-)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. LOL. If it's the second book in the series, I say leave it. Otherwise...

      Delete
  59. Now I'm really curious what book made you so angry. I do love cliffhanger endings usually or characters that fight to get nothing in return, because it often mimics life.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I guess that's true, but at least we learn a lesson from it and usually find a way to validate the torture. 3 dead main characters later... There's no way to truly validate that.

      Delete
  60. Hi Crystal .. congratulations to Diane; as far as Mary is concerned .. her book premise sounds fascinating ... and the lie - I think it just might be #3 ...

    But - what was that line? When something irritates us, or upsets us in a book - it really rankles for ever doesn't it ... let us know!!! Cheers Hilary

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. LOL. I'm sure the final line wouldn't bother everyone. It just totally hit me wrong.

      Delete
  61. UGH! That is frustrating. Even in a series, each book should have closure. You give readers a reason to move on to book 2, but you close book 1 up or they just get angry!!!

    ReplyDelete
  62. Uh oh. Now I'm going to be afraid to finish the book I'm reading. If it's bad, I'll mark it out and pretend it didn't happen!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I KNOW. I totally should, right? (Except it's a library book.)

      Delete
  63. Yeep, that's disappointing about the last line. Sorry to hear it. Hope your next read doesn't leave you hanging like that. And I'll guess number 3 is the lie :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. My next read didn't leave me hanging. THANK YOU, TC MCKEE! =)

      Delete
  64. Yeep, that's disappointing about the last line. Sorry to hear it. Hope your next read doesn't leave you hanging like that. And I'll guess number 3 is the lie :)

    ReplyDelete
  65. cool happenings, as usual! sorry about that last line, i hate that!
    yay for Jay and his winner, Diane!
    and yay for Mary! but i have to say, number one has to be the lie - not for hours, but would be awesome!

    ReplyDelete
  66. The book did evoke an emotional response from it's reader so it did its job...another way of looking at it!

    Congrats to Mary!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Sure, but is it a good response? I could probably flame it based on my response, but I won't. No, I won't.

      Delete
  67. Congratulations to Mary and everyone!

    ReplyDelete
  68. I think #1 is the lie.

    Congrats to Mary.

    I got Jay's wrong. So he is fearful of eye pokes.

    ReplyDelete
  69. Ahh, a cliffhanger. I take it there is a sequel to this novel?

    Mary's book sounds so cool! I'll guess the lie is #1 even though it is so crazy it is probably true.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. There is a sequel...a year from now. *grumble, grumble, grumble*

      Delete
  70. Haha! I do love you Crystal. It is annoying but I always like to leave an ambiguity at the end of a story. Unless you come along and tell me to finish it properly :))

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ambiguity is acceptable. This was in-your-face blatantly lame.

      Delete
  71. The lie is no.#1
    Mary is such a go-getter! A really prolific writer!

    ReplyDelete
  72. Cliffhangers bug me, especially when the sequel is a long time away from being published. The ending can make or break the book; I just finished reading a book that was otherwise pretty good but had an anticlimactic ending, which kind of ruined the rest of the story for me.

    ReplyDelete

Hit me with your cheese!