Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Where's My Happy Ending?

I listened to an Amy Tan audiobook this month, The Hundred Secret Senses.  I engaged in a rollercoaster ride of emotions with the main character, Olivia. The story is basically the releationship between Olivia and her half-sister.  Olivia is half Chinese, while her much older half-sister is full Chinese. The story is rich with Chinese culture.  I have always felt that I can identify with the  characters that Amy Tan writes.  Being the product of an American father and Korean mother, I understand the irritating, funny, mystifying, and sometimes maddening experience of a bi-cultural home.

I think the author did a great job of telling a story where you feel invested in the characters.  I wanted them all to be happy. I needed to be happy because I had become the main character watching my story unfold.  The ending was powerful in case you haven't guessed.   I wonder if writers struggle with telling a story ending that will not make everyone happy. Have you read anything lately where the ending surprised you?

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