Both tropes are commonly used in books these days and I know they can annoy some readers to piece's while others eat them up. To me, the actual problem is that most books don't perform the love triangles and cliffhangers well.
So, what do you think? Do you like one more than the other? Do love triangles and cliff hangers bother you? Or do you enjoy a good off-the-edge ending or engaging triangle?
So, as I said above, I have nothing against these elements of books... as long as I feel the author put time into making the idea actually work.
There are some good love triangles out there, in my opinion. The Unearthly trilogy is a great example! To me, I never felt like Clara was playing with either of the love interests. That is step one in making a good triangle. Don't let the heroine/hero jump between love interests like a bouncy ball between toddlers! Otherwise, the readers will get annoyed. Fast.
Another love triangle I enjoyed was the one between Tessa, Jem, and Will in the Infernal Devices trilogy. The two guys don't become "mortal enemies" (this aggravates me so much in books!) just because they like the same girl! They still are best friends and are totally considerate of each other's feelings. Woot!
However, a lot of love triangles are less than satisfactory... I will not name them as there is not one right off the top of my head. However, there are lot's I have problems with, from minor to major. (Tiger's Curse, The Elite, Twilight, Switched, Wings, and more. Wow.)
Okay, I guess I lied. I just named quite a few. Some of the books I enjoyed otherwise though. So having a less than satisfactory love triangle does not always affect the rating. However, most of the time it does affect the rating... it just depends if the problems are larger than "minor annoyances".
As a little note, the love triangle in the Hex Hall series might be my all-time favorite love triangle. I am having a hard time justifying this though. Another one is the triangle in the Alanna saga. That triangle, however, is for me, the original.
I actually love a good cliffhanger. It's what makes me buy the second book the moment it is released and start reading as soon as I find a place to curl up with hot chocolate. What's life without a little excitement? However, if I read the book and absolutely NOTHING is resolved... I will feel so jipped, and, I won't lie, the fact will big time affect the book's rating.
Here are some recent cliffhanger's I thought were emotion-provoking, unique, and/or thrilling:
I thought Insurgent has a pretty promising cliffhanger! (Me. Want. Allegiant. Now.) The ending resolves some things but opens a whole world of new and previously unthought of possibilities up at the end, which I love!
Another cliffhanger that fits the ticket of "surprising and thought provoking"is Pivot Point. At the end, most things are solved, yet in a different way with new edge-of-your-seat information... leaving an unknown future that we are anxious to find out about in the next novel.
Also, the Vampire Academy and Bloodlines series have those cliffhangers that tear you apart inside. I am known to get very emotional at the end of Mead's books. They normally have me screaming "No! nononono! You can't end the story there! What about this person? And what happens after this thing on the last page that causes a tidal wave of emotion?" When I feel like this, I know that the book was a great one. I care for the characters, and I am definitely picking up the next book. I guess you won another round Richelle Mead...
What is you answer to today's question? Your answers are what BLI is all about!