A reader wrote to me about endings yesterday – or more specifically, about the ending to Building Harlequin’s Moon, which he didn’t like. I was sorry he didn’t like it, but there’s not much possible to do about an ending that’s already published, and in this case, written so many books ago I’d have to go re-read it to remember the fine detail (I do remember writing it , with Larry, and my motivations for the characters and the greater arc of events, and even some specific lines). I wouldn’t change it anyway – I like how it ended, even after so long. And the usual comments I get on the book are “where’s the sequel?” rather than really long and well-thought out plot questions.

Well the world is full of coincidences. Last night, I finished a book I had been looking forward to, and then enjoyed reading very much. I didn’t like the end, though.

I do love the way the universe hands us little food-for-thought vignettes like this.

No conclusions yet.

4 thoughts on “Endings”

  1. I just read the book myself, and rather liked the way it ended. But it does leave a lot of tantalizing unanswered questions that make me curious. What did they find at Ymir? A thriving civilization? Ruins thousands of years old? Given that nobody from there ever came to check on them in 60,000 years (and it should have been easier for them to make more antimatter to make the trip than for the Glenn’s crew) it doesn’t lead one to expect the best. And why DID Earth stop sending anything?

    I expect these questions will never be answered, as I don’t imagine there will ever be a sequel. 🙁

  2. Loved the book! The evolution of Rachel’s character was really well done. I sincerely hope for a sequel (or two) to play out at least Gabriel’s last line regarding Ma Liren.

  3. I am about 1/3 of the way through reading this book. However from what I have read about the book and all the question which I gather remain unanswered I have decided any further reading would be a waste of my time. I have no interest in books whose authors feel their readers should be exposed to a multiple choice excercise as a conclusion. I read to be entertained and I want a beginning a middle and an ending….. a complete and satisfying ending. I’m glad I found out that this is primarily a “character developement”story rather then a hard science fiction book. I shall, therefore, move on to what appears to me to be more interesting reading.

  4. Like everyone else, the thought of a story about the potential colony of Ymir is exactly how I wound up here, but I’m really glad you ended the story where you did. The universe is never finished, and you did an amazing job conveying the feeling of so many millennia passing in a single novel. The characters’ lives feel “lived-in” and a sequel would only take away from that.

    My attempts at novel writing have always fallen short, but my short stories have gotten enough readers that I experienced the demands for a sequel where everything turned out alright. Unlike you, I caved and wrote it, and have regretted it ever since, even though it was well received.

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