Do you prefer happy or sad endings?
Personally, I prefer happy endings. When I read a book, it’s a form of escapism for me. I want to forget my troubles, I want to be entertained. When I read a book, I am emotionally vested in the characters; in some ways they are more real to me than some people I know in my life. So of course I want them to live happily ever after. Or at least, know that that chapter in their life ended well. It makes the adventures or the journey in the story more worthwhile; to know that after all that they’ve been through, they got what they deserved.
Now, I’m not saying all books should have a happy ending to make it a good book for me. Sometimes, sad endings make a better impact on the reader than a happy ending would. It is more close to home, more realistic. It makes you think about the story again, and it makes you relate it to yourself.
I think a good author has the ability to make a good ending, whether it’s happy or sad. Neil Gaiman’s Stardust makes a good example. The book has a comparatively sadder ending than the movie’s happy, slightly cheesy ending, but I think they’re both good in their own ways, though I personally prefer the movie. I understand that fans of the books may not agree with me though. 😉 That said, what is your personal preference? Think about your favourite books – are they mostly happy or sad endings? No sitting on the fence on this one! 🙂