DAY 25. – The most surprising plot twist or ending.

My first choice here is The Life of Pi. It should be obvious that the story of Pi and Richard Parker cannot possibly be true. A boy in a boat with a Bengal tiger, obviously it could not happen. But the skill of Martel’s writing means that you are completely drawn into the situation. You never doubt it for a moment and in fact, if you are like me, you want to believe in the story that Pi spins even when you know the truth.

As this is a story about faith and belief, it is fitting that belief wins over the rational, logical version of events. For me, before this book, I never really understood the impulse towards religion but this book suggested how it was a solace in difficult times and how it helped people cope with terrible events. I wouldn’t say that I am now religious but I at least understand why you might be.

My second choice is The Wasp Factory by Iain Banks. This is a disturbing book with one of the most unsympathetic narrators I think I have ever come across. This is a bildungsroman like no other, although you could say it follows in the tradition of books such as The Catcher in the Rye and A Clockwork Orange. The violence is gruesomely inventive and unlike anything else I have ever read. Even the horrors of the book could not prepare me for the ending. I won’t spoil it for those who haven’t read it but it is cruel, humurous and wonderfully inventive. It puts the rest of the story in another light.

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