LitStaff Pick: Our Favorite Plot Twists

Daughter of Smoke and Bone
Laini Taylor

Creating a well-written and often very surprising plot twist is a skill that few writers can pull off. The twist must not come out of left field so as to completely disorient the reader, but at the same time, it should leave little clues, without having the reader guess the twist. If I see hints of a plot twist, I’m one of those readers that try to figure it out before the twist is revealed. Often, I end up annoyed at the writer’s lack of originality because I’ve figured out the book too early. Very few books have left me surprised.

Daughter of Smoke and Bone, however, was the one book where I figured out the plot twist before the main characters, but kept reading because I was intrigued with the fallout of the twist. Laini Taylor had created this intense story between two characters and the plot twist was easy to guess before the characters learned the information. I know this was done on purpose because the story then wasn’t about the plot twist, it became a question of how the characters will react and what they will do with the information gained from the twist. When the reveal came, it was as intense and terrific and horrific as I expected. Then, I had another 100 pages to deal with the fallout! Those 100 pages were full of passion and pain, love and hate, and deeper conflict and unique resolution.

The plot twist of Daughter of Smoke and Bone is the best I have ever experienced, (yes, because it was an experience), in any book I have ever read. Because of this, I am anxiously awaiting the sequel which should be landing on my doorstep any day now. Through Taylor’s twist, the characters have burrowed into my heart and I eagerly await returning to Taylor’s world.

-K. Imani Tennyson

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