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Cliffhanger or Disappointment? A Post about Endings

Betsy Bird over at Fuse #8 posted the other day about books with unsatisfying endings, mentioning a new book by an author I love (which I haven’t read yet, and don’t even want to talk about too much for fear of spoiling the ending for myself), but also citing one of my ALL-TIME FAVORITE BOOKS IN THE WORLD, The Princess Bride. And thus the gloves are thrown down. I love The Princess Bride and its ending, to me, is an all-time classic.1 It has a sense of continuing on that allows the reader to imagine what happens next, and to me, that’s one of the greatest gifts an author can give his or her audience — the chance to contribute to the story. I’m representing a novel that has that same kind of ending — without giving it away, it’s not so much a cliffhanger as fading to black the very moment before the grand conclusion, allowing the reader to envision what happens next and not spoiling it for their own imagination.
Or maybe I just can’t bear to hear anything bad about The Princess Bride2. What books have left you unsatisfied by the ending? Not counting titles within a series, please. Or which ones do you feel have an ending that still leaves things up in the air, but works for you? Let the commenting commence!

1 – I’m not talking, btw, about the lost chapter of the sequel to TPB which appears in the 20th Anniversary Edition of the TPB, and all subsequent printings, although the edition I’m linking to does include that. I’m talking about the original ending.
2 -And what ever happened with this? I’m a nerd gamer, I want to know!

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