Thursday, August 27, 2009

Cafe Chaos--Books

Thursday, August 27, 2009
Welcome to Café Chaos. Grab a cup of coffee or tea (we prefer coffee) and join us for a chat. Every Thursday we’ll offer recommendations for book lovers. Feel free to comment on our picks or to throw in a few of your own. We’re listening!

SIS Barb says...

A disappearance, questionable pasts, secrets, mystery, wealth and family. This book has it all. Set in the foothills of the Adirondack Mountains, you'll enjoy the descriptions of the fantastic scenery and the colorful characters. Can you figure out who the killer is? I know I didn't!

My Pick of the Week: Tempting Fate

Author: Carla Neggers

SIS Bren says... I don't have a book recommendation for this week. This has been an extremely hectic week for me and it amazes me how quickly the time has gone. I guess my recommendation would be for a book about time management!

My Pick of the Week: Read something from your TBR list. We all have a list. I have probably at least eight books lying around ready to be read. So when you have a spare minute, grab one, and start reading!

SIS Beth says…
I’m in awe. I’m in shock. I recommended this book last week when I was only a little into it. I’m recommending it again because I just finished it and I can’t get it out of my brain. BUT you have to read the first three books in the series first otherwise you’ll be lost. Or at the very least won’t feel the full impact of the emotional and plot twists and turns.

My pick of the Week: DreamFever Karen Marie Moning
I can’t tell you anything about it. Anything and everything would be some sort of spoiler. All I can say is… I’m in awe of the author’s world-building and storytelling skills. And... I was shocked by the CLIFFHANGER ending. I guess I shouldn’t have been. Book 3 in the 5 books series ended with a huge cliffhanger. But this one… I was breathless. And, yes, heartbroken. Say it ain’t so! The worst part is … I have to wait a year to read the finale. To learn the answers to a gazillion questions. To get my Hollywood ending… or not. Since it’s an urban fantasy—not romance—I’m not guaranteed my happily-ever-after. But I digress. I understand why I have to wait so long for the next and last installment. Writing a complex series like this is no easy feat. But that CLIFFHANGER!!


So here’s my questions to you SIS readers. How do you feel about cliffhangers—in books or film?


Michael Miller said...

I like them in both. I think its cool when you watch a movie and they have some in when they are planning on making 2nd movie. That just makes me want to go and watch it. It is the same for books.

Tori Lennox said...

Cliffhangers drive me INSANE.

Sisters-in-Sync said...

I haven't quite finished Beth's recommendation, DREAMFEVER. But what I've read so far is very, very good.

Cliffhangers? I think they're one of those things you love to hate. As I writer, I hope to one day master this skill. What better prelude to the next sell???

SIS Barb aka Elle J Rossi

Sisters-in-Sync said...

I don't mind cliffhangers, as long as there is more to come. I get a little annoyed when a movie ends with uncertainty, leaving you to make up your own mind of how it ended.

SIS Bren

Sisters-in-Sync said...

Oh Bren,

I second that. That gets on my last nerve! If I wanted to make up my own ending I would have left before the movie ended.

SIS Barb

flchen1 said...

Aaacckk! I HAAAATE cliffhangers! Unless the sequel is immediately available and I can assuage my curiosity immediately. Otherwise, a pox on cliffhangers! ;) (Uh, clearly I'm not a patient person...) That said, I don't mind a series of books, but I do prefer that each story sort of wraps up at the end, and that there isn't too long a wait before the next installment!

Richard said...

Since I can't add a literary suggestion yet, as I'm embroiled in an exciting novel as we speak (yet, I hold reviews until I've reached the CONCLUSION --- for me, the defining moment of Literature AND Cinema), I'll wax encyclopaedic on the concept of the "Cliffhanger," a device I, too, have a STRONG love/hate relationship with.

The "cliffhanger" has been with us pretty much as long as there has BEEN writing, the best "ancient" example being "the 'One Thousand and One Nights,' wherein the queen Scheherazade, who is facing a morning execution on the orders of her husband King Shahryar, devises the solution of telling him a story but leaving it at a cliffhanger, thus forcing the king to postpone her execution to hear the rest of the tale."(source - Wikipedia) Imagine HIS agitation, "flchen1"!

The actual TERM "cliffhanger" probably comes from "Thomas Hardy's serial novel, "A Pair of Blue Eyes," in 1873. At the time newspapers published novels in a serial format with one chapter appearing every month. To ensure continued interest in the story, many authors employed different techniques. When the novel was serialised in Tinsley's Magazine between September 1872 and July 1873, Hardy chose to leave one of the main protagonists, Henry Knight, literally hanging off a cliff staring into the stony eyes of a trilobite embedded in the rock. This became the archetypal—and literal—cliff-hanger of Victorian prose. (source - Wikipedia)" Of course, especially during the silent-era of films, QUITE dependent upon serialization to garner repeat attendance, this technique has become more and more prevalant IN that medium.

Before I shut-up --- as much as I loved the series, one of the WEAKEST cliffhangers always in my mind --- the ending of "Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back," which ends with Hans Solo embedded in carbonite --- TOO many unanswered questions, TOO obvious that yet another movie was planned. BEST cliffhangers, for me --- those that truly HAVE a wrap up ... but leave JUST enough answered questions you HAVE to come back! Or, even better ... simply HINTING that there MAY be a sequel!!! In others words, give me a BELOVED character from your work hanging on in the ICU at the end of your work, one who may or may NOT die, me knowing that it doesn't necessarily have to end your series --- do NOT insult me by having the MAIN character in the same state at the end, like I'm really gonna believe your lodestone (cash cow?) is gonna croak!!

Taylor said...

Barb - Every week you hook me in with your choices!! I don't know which book to start with from your list! And you've mentioned Neggers before, right?

Bren - My next TBR book is Pontoon by Garrison Keillor. It's something quite different from what I usually read and I'm excited to see where it takes me.

Beth - I remember reading the last paragraph of the book when I stole it from you in the library (which I might add is your workplace, not your reading nook *ahem*) and it pretty much seemed all well and done if ya get my drift. Maybe I have to start in the begriming to understand...

Sisters-in-Sync said...


I probably have mentioned Carla Neggers before. I do enjoy her work.

And do not, I repeat, DO NOT breathe a word about the ending of DREAMFEVER! I'm still not there. But too funny that out of all 4 books you've only read the last paragraph of the 4th book! Love it!

SIS Barb

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