Books Whose Endings Left My Jaw on the Floor

Posted May 19, 2015 by Carlisa in Features, Top Ten Tuesday / 15 Comments

Top Ten Tuesday


This Top Ten Tuesday was left completely open-ended. Which left my mind completely open-ended. And by open-ended, I mean completely and utterly blank. So I brainstormed…thought…recruited my mom’s and sister’s help…brainstormed more when they had no ideas…and then finally realized something pivotal: I love endings. An ending holds the power to either make or break a book. So I decided to write about books whose endings left me speechless.

Now disclaimer: I’m not the biggest fan of abrupt in-the-middle-of-the-action cliffhangers, so that’s not really what these are. Double disclaimer: Cliffhangers can be good if they are done well and if the book still feels completed. Triple disclaimer: These are all my opinion and you are open to yours.

Okay, moving on. Here we go:

salem falls delirium lauren oliver the program vanishing girls hero of ages

  1. Salem Falls by Jodi Picoult
    I went through a stage a few years ago where all I wanted to read was Jodi Picoult. She writes mostly adult fiction (along with some YA) but I just loved her. I still do, I think. I just haven’t read her in a long time. Anyways the ending of this book, like literally the last page, completely changed everything I had thought about one of the characters. And it was a character who I hated; she was just vile. But this last page made me think about my perception of her and I was literally left with my mouth hanging open.
  2. Delirium by Lauren Oliver
    This ending was beautiful. I think Lauren Oliver is really good at these type of endings. It just left me stunned where I just had to close the book and close my eyes and just sit. The imagery was just beautiful and it left you needing to read the sequel but not in a cliffhanger-y way. Bah, so good. This was my first Lauren Oliver experience and she’s since become one of my automatic-buy authors.
  3. The Program by Suzanne Young
    Ah! I just read this one a couple of weeks ago and the ending tripped me up, man. It was really just the epilogue. The ending was finished; it felt completed. And then the Epilogue happened and changed the entire book. What you thought the entire book was suddenly worthless because this freaking epilogue. Man, I mean I love that epilogue. Just I hate it too.
  4. Vanishing Girls by Lauren Oliver
    Yes, I realize I’m putting two Lauren Oliver books here. This one blew my mind. I had NO idea that this book was going to end like that. Oh my gosh. I can’t say anything because of spoilers but I want you to read it and then talk to me. Okay?
  5. Hero of Ages by Brandon Sanderson
    This one wasn’t so much a mouth-hanging-open-in-shock, but the ending was just beautiful. I love trilogies when they’re written well and Sanderson wrote this one well. Everything from all three books came together in the end and it was just magic. I loved it.

Now I’m only doing five because these are the ones with endings that I distinctly remember. I think from now on I’m going to put them in their own shelf on Goodreads if they have a phenomenol ending so I’ll remember.

What do you think? What books have you read that have made you stop and think or just shocked you? Let me know in the comments!

  • Lovely idea for a TTT! I didn’t read any of these books, but The Program is waiting for me on my TBR pile so I’ll read it eventually.

    Books that made me think are all books by Benjamin Alire Saénz. He’s really good at writing about the human mind and it changes the way I think every single time I read one of his books. I never actually want it to end. (Although, it obviously always does)

    The ending of Stolen by Christopher Lucy still has an impact on me whenever I think about it. It’s an extraordinary book and if you didn’t read it, I can’t recommend it enough.

    • I haven’t read either of those books so I’ll have to check them out!

  • Ellie Pilcher

    Great idea! I must admit to not having read any of these books – but there endings are pulling me in (I’m the kind of person who reads the last page first…) But I think one book that affected me was the ending of ‘The Book Thief’ the last line is my favourite quote from a book ever! 😀 Great post!

    • I LOVE The Book Thief but I haven’t read it in so long so I didn’t remember the ending. Thanks for reminding me!

  • I’m currently reading THE PROGRAM so I’m definitely interested to see how it ends now!!

    • Oh yes! Let me know what you think when you finish!

  • Marie Harris

    Great list! I kind of wish I’d thought of that topic! Maybe the TB&TB girls will see your list and make it a future TTT topic. And Vanishing Girls!!! Yes!!! I think that the beginning of the end was revealed about 3/4 of the way in and when I hit it, I couldn’t put down the book. CRAZY. But so very good. I made my list on “Top Ten Books I’ve Read So Far in 2015.” Here’s my TTT. Happy reading!

    • Yes, it’s crazy! I’m making my mom read it right now and I’m just excited for when she hits that 3/4 point and can freak out over the craziness that happens. I really want to read that book again so I can process it.

  • Bloggin’ ’bout Books

    I love a great ending! Weirdly enough, although I’ve read three of the five books on your list, I can’t remember their endings. Agh. I might have to go back and re-read the endings now.

    Happy TTT!

    • Haha, that always happens to me. Unless I sit there and just think about the ending, I’ll probably forget it. I just read too many books to remember them all completely. That’s why I love the endings that make an impact on me and MAKE me remember.

  • Great Topic! I haven’t read any of these books. A lot of times I forget the ending of books. I think a shelf on goodreads would be a good idea.

    • Yeah, I forget them too unless they’re phenomenal or just shocking. Thanks for the visit!

  • Jo Elliott

    Oh my gosh the ending of Salem Falls! I did not see that one coming at all. It made me feel really bad for hating that certain character for the whole book.
    My TTT:

    • YES. I’m so glad you’ve read it and understand my shock. I just didn’t expect that at all. It really makes you think about how you’re judging people before you know their real story.

      • Jo Elliott

        It really does. I’ve read a lot of Jodi Picoult books, and she always has a twist, sometimes you see it coming, but that time I was totally blindsided.