Every decent book (or complete series) has (or should have) closure. Resolution. A definite end with all threads tightly woven and all questions answered to a satisfactory level.
Does that mean we have to be happy with the ending, though?
Does that mean we have to accept who the MC has chosen to spend the rest of her life with?
Again, if the author has done her job well, the reader should be left content with where the MC’s life has ended up (I am only talking fiction here). The reader should not be left shaking their fist at the page and wondering what the fudge was on the writer’s mind, right?
I guess I’m pretty lucky because I’ve yet to come across a book where I’ve hated the HEA. The closest I’ve come to wondering if I’d be left placated was with Rachel Vincent’s Shifters series.
I mean … how would everything have panned out if Faythe had ended up with Jace instead of Marc? Apart from the fact it would have been one hell of an explosive ending because NO WAY would Marc have taken that lying down—though his true response would have been a pretty unpredictable one. Which was why I wondered how the heck Vincent would pull it off (because I ADORED Jace) and not leave the reader (me) heartbroken on the poor kiddos behalf.
Another example: Supposing Kelley Armstrong’s Elena Michaels had fallen for Logan instead of the hunky (though psychopathic) Clay Danvers. How VERY different a story Bitten would have turned out to be, no?
What about Karen Marie Moning’s Fever series? Would the readers have been in uproar if MacKayla Lane had succumbed and fallen for V’Lane instead of the slow structure of mutual love between her and Barrons? I guess she could have pulled it off without upsetting her entire readership with just a little tweaking to V’Lane’s character and likability. It’s not like I didn’t enjoy reading about him. He made me chuckle most of the time, so the reader (me) could have been convinced, right?
Or, how about some of the Black Dagger Brotherhood novels? I’m pretty certain there just has to be some pairings in there that the readers don’t 100% agree with. Right? I could safely say without verification that Blay so shouldn’t be with Saxton in the readers’ eyes—not when Quinn’s heart is bleeding so badly over the guy. Damn, some readers even believed that Jane so wasn’t the right female for V.
Are there any books you’ve come across and paused to wonder … but what if s/he’d taken that path instead? What would their story have been then? Or do you always believe the author has got it right?