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March 23, 2016


Susan Neace

It can be a very bad thing for me to start a new book before bed. I can either read just one more page until way to late, or worse, get so caught up in the story that my tired brain won't put it down so I can sleep. So I read the end. I also have done it with books that have become a chore instead of a pleasure, when I seek motivation to keep going

Kathy Lynn Emerson

I sometimes check the last page first, usually when I have reason to fear the author may be killing off a favorite character in a series in that book. As long as I know everyone survives, I can go back and enjoy the story. I don't like spoilers in reviews, but they don't ruin a book for me. Similarly, I sometimes read the synopsis at IMdb before I watch a movie or tv show and it doesn't spoil it for me at all. You, Me and the Apocalypse for example. Knowing some of what to expect is actually making it more interesting to watch.

Hank Phillippi Ryan

Yes, as I have written in the past--and resulting in endless derision--I often look at the end. Because it's instructive to see how the author gets there. It doesn't ruin the book at all--and usually, in fact often, the last page is not the crucial one anyway.

Spoilers in reviews, though. The WORST! We work so hard to make our books surprising--WHY WHY WHY give it away?? It doesn't ruin other books for me, but it enrages me when people do it for mine.

Alan Portman

I don't peek. Perhaps it is that my favorite authors don't pull crap like introduce the killer on page 287.

A part of IT support is accessing confidential information. You learn to look for what you need without peeking at what you don't. A handy skill when I have been given snippets of unpublished manuscripts to read and check. Even the nearly 200 page snippet one client needed checking.

If one of my favorite characters should not make it to the end flap, I hope they get a good send off.

Elaine Viets

Yay, Susan. I knew you were one of my peeps.

Elaine Viets

If you're worried about a favorite character's safety, Kathy Lynn, you're right to check on them. Series writers seem to be growing more ruthless.

Elaine Viets

I won't deride you, Hank. I like to see how the puzzle works. Spoilers in reviews are bad. But even worse are spoilers on the book's jacket copy.

Elaine Viets

Hm. I recognize myself in this post, Alan. When my computer got a fatal virus and all I had was a printout of the chapters, Alan saved my book -- and my contract.

Karen in Ohio

Well, I don't normally peek, but Elaine, you make a very strong case for starting!

Elaine Viets

Hm. Are you sure you want to crossover, Karen?

Tom Barclay

NEVER! I want to see how clever you've been - again!

Elaine Viets

You have more will power than I do, Tom.

Storyteller Mary

I rarely read ahead, though I did peek at the last page of _Time of Fog and Fire_. I just couldn't stand the suspense, had to know all would be well, just as my niece tricked me into a spoiler of the last Harry Potter book. "If Harry dies, I'm not reading any further."
There have been a books (not by you, my favorites) that have made me wish I had skipped the last chapters or the whole book, cliffhanger endings, killing off main characters with no warning . . . not my cup of tea.
I have skipped ahead in a few others because I planned to abandon them; sometimes I see enough good in the ending to give it a second try. As the crossword puzzle guru says, your puzzle (book), your rules to decide.

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