Writing/Book Pet Peeves: Sliding Multiple Narratives

I love books. There are not many in my favorite genres that I don’t like. But, that being said, I do have a few issues with the writing in books, and sometimes, with the book itself. As I’m sure, do we all. So I’m making a series of posts about these pet peeves of mine.

The first one I want to talk about {and is the most frustrating to me} is when the author slides multiple narratives within the same chapter- or even worse, within the same paragraph. It’s disorienting, confusing, and pulls you out of the scene.

One of the last books I just finished reading constantly did this. It was like a battle of the viewpoints- back and forth, back and forth within the same chapter, and sometimes within the same paragraph. While I still loved the characters and it had a pretty good plot, this little annoyance became very frustrating and ended up diminishing the book’s lovability.

Now, on the other side of it, I know there are many books out there which are amazing that do that very thing. In fact, one of my favorite books {East} did just that- with the exception of limiting each chapter to only one narrative. In my opinion, that is the best way to approach multiple narratives. Not only is it much, much less confusing for the reader, but I feel you get to know the characters in a nice, neat packaged way.

Do sliding multiple narratives bother any of you as well, or do you actually prefer it? I’d love to hear your opinions!



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