fantasy · reading

A Reason Not to Read the End First

Me, I read the end of a book all the time. I do it randomly, sometimes to find out if a character I like will survive, things like that.

So last week I was reading the second Sharing Knife book, Legacy by  Lois McMaster Bujold. I read the end and then I read bits and pieces of the middle.

And you know what? It sucks. I really like the main characters. And the author destroys their lives.

I am not going to say it was unexpected. Despite not actually reading most of the book, this was an outcome that the author hinted at in the last book. She did more than hint in the first few pages of Legacy. So it wasn’t surprising.

But really! She rained wholesale destruction on their lives.

I have read – I don’t remember where – but I have read Lois McMaster Bujold say she likes to take the thing that their society likes least and do that to the characters. (I think that’s a really great way to murder your darlings.)

She does it in spades. By the end, they got almost nothing left for people to destroy. There is still hope, but yeah.

I am still shocked by what happens to them and I don’t know how or even if I will actually read the book.

I would probably have finished Legacy by now if I hadn’t read the end first. So, yeah, this is a reason not to read the end first.