A good ending matters. Sure you must have a strong beginning to lure people in, make them interested, but there’s nothing more satisfying than a good finish. Leaving a reader fulfilled and a little sad the story’s over, is an ending well written. I’ve read two books lately that have made me feel this way. Two books that were the big end, meaning they were the final installments in a trilogy or saga. And let’s be honest, as an author you have to make it count. At the end of multiple books your readers have stuck with you for years and spent hours of their life reading what you’ve written. You owe them a stellar conclusion.
I started the Legend trilogy a couple of years ago and while I liked the first book, it didn’t have its hooks in me until the second. The end of the second book made me long for the third, and Marie Lu brought the fire with the final book, literally, there was war people. With each book Lu upped the ante until I had no idea how the story would end. It got to the point where I was concerned it couldn’t have a good ending, but she knew what she was doing and gave all the characters I’d gotten to know over the course of the books the perfect sendoffs. June, Day and Tess all got what they needed.
Now, the second final installment that I had the privilege to read this year was by Cassandra Clare. I will mention up front that I am a huge fan of hers. Her Clockwork trilogy was amazing so the bar for the final Mortal Instruments book was set high. And she did not disappoint. At over 700 pages she could’ve run it into the ground or become long-winded, but she didn’t even come close. The action starts on page one, it also sets up her next batch of books nicely, and it doesn’t slow down. What I appreciated even more was that after the major action ended, she took her time hashing out the characters endings. It was nice to have such a complete Epilogue. I can now imagine where some of my favorite characters are and see a glimpse as to where the next adventure in the Shadowhunter’s world will go.
Hopefully, we can all write the perfect end to the stories we’ve slaved over. Giving our readers and our characters the ending they deserve.