Yep. I’m on my soapbox.
As you may or may not know, the ending to the Sookie Stackhouse novel was revealed on Charlaine Harris’s Facebook page yesterday by a fan. Don’t read any further if you don’t want any details about it, though I don’t directly say what the ending is.
I have mixed feelings on some things, but at the end of the day, I’m a reader.
There are a lot of upset fans, but I don’t even know if you can say the ending was “leaked”. Though it’s in Germany, the book is technically released now and it’s the digital age so of course information will travel fast. Honestly, I’m surprised it wasn’t “leaked” sooner. Makes me wonder where the ARC readers were. Wasn’t Harry Potter’s ending leaked? For the record, I think it’s totally lame to post spoilers out in the open for the masses and not give them a choice to decide to read it for themselves. But for those fans who cancelled pre-orders, I am curious as to if you’re glad the spoilers were released, giving you the option to save your money on assured disappointment, or would you rather have not known?
I’ve not read the series but I do watch the show (though I’m not emotionally attached to it), so I was considering giving them a try but followed my instincts to let it finish first before becoming invested, especially considering the general consensus from my closer friends who complain about how the quality of the series has degraded ever since the show began. From the general sound of things, I’ve already been reading series of superior quality so I don’t feel like I’m missing out. And after this debacle, I think I’ll pass.
While I don’t read these books, I know all too well what it’s like to follow a series (in books or film) and become very invested in the story’s outcome. I’m not up for paying upwards of $30 for entertainment that will only serve to piss me off more than make me happy. When it comes to authors, I do respect that it’s their work and their creation, but when you have a following I believe you do have a responsibility to them. And last I checked authors don’t do this for charity. It’s made a lucky number of them very wealthy and they wouldn’t be there without their readers. So it’s sad when an author’s attitude suggests that they’ve forgotten where they came from. It is impossible to please everybody. That’s one thing, but it’s another to pretty much say F and U to the following that got you there. The “privilege” to read someone’s work stops when people have to put down their hard-earned cash to get it. Like with any product someone pays for, there are expectations. No, you can’t please everyone but blatant misdirection and a bait and switch will piss off a lot more than if you deal it straight.
Kim Harrison has already weighed in pretty much asking that nobody threatens her because of what Harris has done. When it comes to The Hollows, though I love it, I’ve time and time again said that I’m glad it’s ending because I don’t really like being grabbed by my proverbial balls and that’s how it’s been for years. I’m too invested to turn back and though I am confident that Kim will deliver, you never really know until you know.
It’s one thing for a series to take a new direction and I lose interest, like Anita Blake . I enjoyed the first few books immensely but when ardeur came into the picture I realized the series wasn’t what I was hoping for and dropped it like a hot potato, especially when I finally caught up with library copies and had to start paying for them. I don’t miss them and don’t even care, and that’s totally fine. I didn’t feel misled when I stopped because at least it’d been happening for a while. I don’t even think I was that angry about it.
No, an author is never going to make everybody happy regardless of what they do, but that doesn’t mean it’s impossible to be reasonable. I’m not necessarily saying Harris wasn’t being reasonable because, as I said, I haven’t read it. But it definitely happens so I do understand the frustration.
Just my two cents, though for a number of you this is the case where time is more valuable than any dollar sign.