I'm sure I'm not the only struggling writer out there that reads books that are so good, so consuming that you just want to throw things and shake your fist at the sky while yelling, "I want to write like this!" Right? RIGHT? Because that's what I've been doing the last few days.
I know I've tweeted about my love of the series The Vampire Academy but I don't think I've mentioned it on the blog before. I'm in serious love with these books. Yes, I'm a few years late but still, it's love. I also know that there are a lot of people who will shake their head and sniff at vampire books because they're so overdone and "on the way out" but I. Love. Them.
I'm reading the series for the second time and I've done so just as fast as I did the first time and with the exact amount of awe as well. For me, these books aren't even about vampires but amazing characters that I find myself thinking about throughout the day. In fact, a friend asked me what I'd been up to the other day and I answered honestly, "Well, I'm wondering what Dimitri Belikov is up to." It's just the way I think. I can't help it.
What's so impressive though is how ballsy Richelle Mead is. If you've read the series, you know what I'm talking about. The end of the third book and all of the fourth are heart wrenching, gut twisting and breakdown inducing. By nature, I'm not a crier, but I think every time I put down the fourth book in the series, Blood Promise, I bawled my eyes out. And in a show of how good the story is, the next day, I picked the book right back up, tissues in hand. I'm also about to read that book for the second time, ready to cry for a few days again. But Mead went there anyway. She KNEW that she was turning the world she created upside down and she pushed on. Even when you think things are about to get better for poor Rose Hathaway, they don't.
I've also heard people complain about decisions that Rose makes throughout the series, calling her selfish or immature, but that's because she is. Mead allowed Rose to be imperfect and to do things that the readers may disagree with because it's what made her real. She got away with this because the story is just that good and because it's honest. This is so brave and as a struggling writer, SO admirable.
I have a lot of the same feelings about the writing on Sons of Anarchy. You just don't leave seasons hanging the way Kurt Sutter does. You don't flip the whole world around, leaving everyone at risk. You can't write characters that do horrible things and expect people to pull for them. Except that he does. What makes these stories so good is that when I either put the book down or walk away from the TV, my mouth is hanging open and my heart is pounding. I can't believe these writers went there and that they continue to go there.
I haven't read Bloodlines yet, the companion book to the Vampire Academy series, but I have heard what the very last line of the book is. Mead went there again, leaving us hanging yet trusting her that she'll bring it next time. And I'm positive she will.
*shakes fist at ceiling* Why must they set the standards so high? Why??
So, what story, book, TV or otherwise, leaves you shaking your fist? I'll be sure to grab a pen and paper so I can check them out too.