I finished a book recently and it left me shaking my head. There was so, so very much included in the book. Let me start by saying, it was part of a series—and several books into it—so there were all sorts of references to previous characters and happenings. I hadn’t read any of the other books so some of that was a little daunting. Though I suppose, if you’d read the rest, seeing a little aside and/or update would be fun.
When I finished the book, I looked up the next (and last) book in the series to read the blurb. Yes, the self-admitted non-blurb reader specifically looked up the blurb. I wanted to see if I needed to try and find it. After reading the blurb, there was no way I was picking up that book. Just the blurb alone was dramatic, melodramatic and so convoluted I didn’t want to spend the 2-3 days it might take to get through it all just to see if it had a remotely close HEA that would satisfy after that journey (I almost always have to have an HEA in all my book, it’s just how I roll…anyhoo…)
Between reading the second to last book and the blurb, I got to wondering:can you put too much into your stories? And I’m not talking about adding details and descriptions, I’m talking about actual story and plot points. Maybe because it was a series, the author was setting up the next book too much as well as wrapping up some previous story lines tighter. I don’t know if it was intentional and just her style or trying to do too much—haven’t read her before. The main story could have been told completely and utterly (in my opinion) without any of the secondary plotlines. It would have been shorter, but less confusing and a smoother read.
Don’t get me wrong, I like complex stories and I like peripheral plotlines to books, I just don’t like feeling like a need a character guide and score sheet to keep up with whose doing what, where and when, y’know…
But that is one thing that’s great about books… there’s something for everyone. What do you prefer? More or less? Or is it (with many aspects of writing) all in the execution?