Rants and Raves – Of Alternate POVs…

One of my book chatting buddies, Trish, asked this the other day…

I would love to know what others think about the growing trend of POV books. Just finished on that was basically a select, copy and paste. Do you thinks Author’s are doing this to boost their revenue, by choice, instead of including POV’s within the books?

It’s definitely something I’ve thought about but not really dwelt on. Thing is, I remember the first time I read an alternate POV.

twilight

I’d just fallen in love with Twilight (please don’t judge me!) and I found Chapter One in Edward’s POV. I absolutely loved it!

I don’t remember much of it now but I do remember thinking how awesome it was to know what he was thinking.

I probably would have gone on to buy an alternate POV book had I not read and hated the subsequent books in the series… sigh…

Next alternate POV? Fifty Shades of Grey. God I’m a cliche! 🙂

fifty

But again, I read the trilogy, loved it, and read Chapter One in Christian’s POV. Again, loved it.

And again, I would have gone on to read the alternate POV had it materialized…

I suppose just like many others, I wasn’t ready to let go of these characters just yet. And of course when readers demand, authors feel compelled to deliver. However, as successful moneywise as it’s bound to be, I imagine some authors resist the temptation to avoid questions (or accusations) of Trish’s nature.

The first full alternate POV novel I ever read was Walking Disaster.

beautiful

I’d read and fallen in love with Abby and Travis’ story in Beautiful Disaster… in fact I read that book 3 times! But for the first time I was apprehensive about an alternate POV. I’m not sure why… but I was curious enough to request an advanced reader’s copy.

I have to say I was disappointed. There was nothing particularly new in the book.

In fact I realized that I didn’t identify with the characters anymore.

walking

The alternate scenarios seemed like fillers to me and I found myself skimming to get to the parts I’d loved so much in Beautiful Disaster

The book, just like its predecessor, went on to become a New York Times Bestseller… so I guess I’m in the minority. Either way, this made me start avoiding alternate POVs.

Problem is, they are everywhere you look. Someone once told me that Colleen Hoover writes the best alternate POV books. Having never read any of her books, I wouldn’t know, but I’m so so tempted…

hopeless

Take Hopeless and Losing Hope for example. Both books rated 5 stars by my favorite Goodreads reviewers. One says, “It’s not just an alternate perspective, it’s actually a whole different part of the story entirely.  This isn’t just Hopeless from Holder’s POV, this is his story during Hopeless, his story before Hopeless…

Another says, “I LOVED Hopeless & I didn’t know what to think when Losing Hope came out. I, like many of you was concerned that it would be the same story told in Holders POV. That was so NOT the case!”

losing hope

Yet another says, “I always get a bit worried when a previous story is retold in a different pov but with Colleen’s they read like whole new stories and not just repeats. This book made me fall in love with Holder so much more.”

With such raving reviews I’m left believing that it can be done right. But there were a few who felt different. One says, “Honestly, I’m feeling rather gutted and not in a constructive way with “Losing Hope”. Holder’s account, noted against Sky’s, does retread a lot of ground in the story to the point of where in places it feels repetitive (much like Jamie McGuire’s “Walking Disaster” did with Travis being in the primary seat versus Abby.).”

While yet another says, “Don’t get me wrong. I absolutely adored Hopeless!! It was in my top 5 last year. However, if I want to read it again, I’ve got it on my Kindle…. I’ll just go read it again. I do not want to pay for the privilege.”

Sigh… tough call.

So what about authors’ motivation? Monetary speaking, it is a good marketing strategy, and I’m sure publishers encourage it. But I wouldn’t go as far as believing it a pre-meditated plan by an author – ‘I’ll leave out some details so that I can add them in the alternate POV’ kind of scenario… 

Call me naive but I have always wanted to believe that the biggest motivation is the readers. They beg for more books on the same characters. I’ve seen it everywhere. I’m also guilty of holding on to characters too long. There’s also the fact that some authors spend months, sometimes years, creating these characters and their stories… I can imagine it’s hard to just move on.

Well and good I say, whatever the motivation. But as an author, you owe it to your fans to offer something new. We understand that it’s the same story so we do expect some repetitiveness… but we also hope you will offer us more intrigue, a new perspective that completes the story. We hold you on such high esteem we just expect it. 

As a reader, without even considering an author’s motivation, I will endeavor to avoid alternate POVs. So far it’s been more misses than hits. A few authors I absolutely love have recently written alternate POVs and I’m still debating on it. The two that come in mind? The Kathleen Turner series (one of my favorites)…

no turning <– Kathleen’s Book and Blane’s POV –> turn on

… and the Consequences series

conse <– Claire’s Book and Tony’s POV –> behind

I’m very tempted for obvious reasons but very apprehensive as well. I’m curious to know if there’re any alternate POVs you’ve read that you’ve loved.

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32 Responses to Rants and Raves – Of Alternate POVs…

  1. Amy Cook says:

    Oh you should absolutely read Turn on a Dime Blane’s Turn. It was so good to see things from Blane’s perspective and to get inside his head, but this book was more than just that. This book lets you see the backstory of Kade and Blane and was so heart wrenching to see their story and how it shaped the men they are today. You should definitely read Turn on a Dime -it was amazing!

    • Chelsea Ellenberg says:

      I agree with Amy. There is a great deal more of the boys background that wasn’t introduced until Turn On A Dime. Made me love them even more! Also enjoyed knowing that Kat wasn’t the only one confused about her feelings.

    • Natasha Giagancovo says:

      OMG Yes Amy is right I LOVED Turn on a Dime, we got to learn so much about Blane, his feelings for Kathleen and his relationship with his Brother Kade.

  2. Michelle says:

    I read the “Twilight” series and liked it, for what it was – a cute little series about hormonal, angst-filled teens, for preteens. “50 Shades” was not my cup ‘o tea, having already read great writers of darker erotica, D/s and BDSM, like Hill, Sinclair, Masters, Devlin, L. James, etc. “50 Shades” was a poorly researched and extremely wordy version of the “Twilight” series. I am still amazed that people don’t know it was fan-fiction that was published, virtually unedited. As, E.L. James continues to laugh all the way to the bank… SMH

    My issue with first person POVs is that I will ALWAYS compare them with J.D. Salinger – and they will NEVER hold a candle to that book. It seems to be the preferred style of many NA authors or maybe it is a “part” of the genre. I have found out that many younger adults have not read Salinger, so they do not have that frame of reference. I was also dismayed to find out that required reading lists – to prepare students for the next school year – are also a thing of the past. The Summer Reading List is where I discovered the Beat Poets, many of the Classics, and Hemingway, Poe, and Orwell. A sad, missed opportunity, IMO.

    But, you asked about alternate POVs as a literary “style.” It’s ok. Just ok, because it feels like a gimmick to sell more books or actually sell the SAME book twice. However, the market shows that first person POVs, then alternate first person POVs, are big business, so authors will continue to give readers what they will buy.

    • After reading Joey Hill and some other amazing BDSM authors I understand why FSoG is so highly critiqued. I however, was reading non-fiction on Genocide and Holocaust before I read FSoG (I had a 3 day weekend and wanted to ‘get away’ from school work which is how I ended up with it) so I credit is for bringing back to fiction and introducing me to so many wonderful authors I probably would not have come across…

      That being said, I envy my young self and the books I read… Nancy Drews and Enid Blyton… I’ve saved so many for my kids and their schools better encourage it! 🙂

  3. Robin says:

    I read Turn on A Dime by Tiffany Snow, and I loved it. I would by the guys POV for every book. I enjoyed seeing what Blane was thinking & doing in the different parts of the book. It also gives a lot of back story about Blane & Kade, which I loved. It was nice to see how their dinamic came to be. I can’t wait for Kade’s story to be released.

  4. I loved Turn On A Dime-Blane’s Turn! Tiffany was kind enough to write it for the fans of the series who had been begging her for more “deleted scenes” from her website. Yes, it is a re-hash of No Turning Back, but there is a lot of that book where Blane isn’t with Kathleen. In this telling of the story, you get to see his reasoning behind the actions he takes in No Turning Back. Blane is very closed off and always wearing a mask for the world to see, I highly enjoyed reading about his thoughts. Along with the main story, she wrote the story of when Blane found Kade and how the brothers found their way forward together.

    Tiffany will also be releasing Turn On A Dime-Kade’s Turn sometime Spring 2014. It will follow the similar format from Kade’s POV, but the Blane and Kade back story will pick up where Blane’s Turn left off. I can’t wait to read it!

  5. Lee says:

    Turn on a dime was a awesome book. Like every Tiffany snow creation. Could wait for it. Then couldn’t put it down. Have re-read it a number of times. The Kathleen turner series has to be the best series ever written. Must read!!!!

  6. I loved reading the Alternate to “No Turning Back”. When I read a book It doesn’t matter what kind of book. I always have questions. I wonder what people are think. I This help me see where Blane is coming from. and made his a just a tad more likeable. I’m still Team Kade Hope This Helps

  7. Erin says:

    I loved Turn on a Dime. Yes, there was some repetition in scenes from No Turning Back, but they felt different and reading in Blane’s POV was enlightening. Turn on a Dime tells a lot of the backstory of the relationship between Blane and his brother, Kade, and my heart broke for both of them in this story. I can’t wait for Kade’s POV, which is due out in the spring.

  8. Tonia says:

    I also loved Turn on a Dime, Blane’s point of view. I think it’s great to see another pov. Can’t wait for Kades pov. Love Tiffany Snow and her writing!

  9. Cathy Reyes says:

    I hadn’t read romance novels in over 25 years so I was surprised by the POV book. I have read the Kathleen Turner series by Tiffany Snow and after reading Turn On A Dime, I wished that all books were written like this. It supplied insight to Blane’s thoughts and actions. It also included how he and Kade were united. In a way, it was like reading 2 books in 1. Would I like to read more books that include a POV? As long as they are as beautifully as this series, I will enjoy reading the books and the POV.

  10. Julie Slunaker says:

    I loved Turn On A Dime Blane’s Turn. Yes it was a retelling of the first book however it was a telling of Blane and how he rescued his brother Kade. There were also a lot of parts of No Turning Back where Blane was not with Kathleen so you got to see what was happening with him. You would not be disappointed reading his story. It is beautifuly written just like all of Tiffany Snow’s novels.

  11. kim says:

    Turn on a dime was amazing. It was the first book I’ve read that was in the males pov and I love how it showed parts I didn’t know happened along with more on his life. A.MAZING. READ. I love this series!

  12. Sammy C. says:

    Loved Turn on a Dime by Tiffany Snow! It was really great to get Blake’s POV and to get a better understanding of his and Kade’s history. 🙂

  13. wendy Shurette says:

    Turn on a Dime!!!!

  14. I’ve been Team Blane right from the off, so reading Turn on a Dime-Blane’s Turn was a no brainer for me. Despite what I thought the book would give – Blane’s POV, it documents Blane finding Kade and their lives up until Blane leaves for SEAL training. It is a wonderful insight into their relationship with some suprising shared thoughts about Kathleen too. As an avid fan of The Kathleen Turner Series, this book definitely adds a new dimension to the series. Equally, I’m eager to read Kade’s Turn too in Spring ’14.

  15. Kez in Oz says:

    Turn on a Dime by Tiffany Snow changed the way I viewed the series. It was really well written and i loved every minute of it.

  16. Rebecca Doumit says:

    Turn on a Dime is absolutely worth it! You learn so much about who the men are, and why they act the way they do. A lot of the story is their history, which sheds a lot of light on their dynamic as brothers.

  17. Angie H. says:

    Turn on a Dime is great! The entire series is awesome!

  18. Beth Fatlan says:

    Definitely read Blane’s POV! You just get to know his character much better. I LOVED IT!

  19. Linda Reed says:

    Turn on a dime, Blane’s a Turn by Tiffany Snow was not only from Blane’s POV, it also shows how heart wrenching Kade’s story will be. Love the boys!

  20. jeanniezelos says:

    I’m with you, loved BD. bought WD and it was just..meh, ok, i felt flat. It was well written but just nothing to engross me, make me hold my breath. Enjoyed the SOG christian snippets too but having read maybe three or so alternative POV books i’m not keen on them as a whole. I DO love it when authors do a two or more POV in one novel, that lets me see how each is thinking at the right time, not later when i know how the story ends. I recent,y had two for review like that, Eversea and Forever, Jack (Eversea #2) Natasha Boyd – they’re not out yet but fabulous novels, and in second we see jacks journal as a small section of book and it gives a very different take on events. That works for me, not this growing trend of later books though. another thats creeping in is adding books on readers request when they can’t let go of a sereis. i’ve read a couple – can only think of the abbi glines one ATM forever too far. loved the first two and then this just sort of fell flat – i wished i’d stuck at two. then last week i read the fabulous gabreils redemption – sylvain reynolds wrote two – loved them and that should have been it, buit readers wanted more and he delivered – but didn’t just rehash old events – he gave us a whole new story and i loved it, i was worried it would go down the road of others who’ve just rewritten old stuff in a new pov, but this way it worked really well for me. anyway – i’m off for my monday breakfast with freind 🙂 merry xmas all.

  21. @eBook_Girl says:

    While I think some authors and publishers might be working the money angle (But if they want to make it their career then I don’t blame them!), I think mostly it is fans loving the book so much and the author wants to give them more but maybe the story was done.
    If I loved a book I will probably buy the alternate POV. I get to relive their story but through new eyes. I love it.

    I was totally looking forward to Travis’ POV and Remy’s POV(By Katy Evans)

  22. anbpowers says:

    I agree with the numerous people who said Losing Hope is different, it is. I loved it, we get to read about how he viewed Hope when she was a child, when they had to move, when Les died, and so on. Another really good one was Trust in Me by J. Lynn which is Cam’s POV of Wait for You. I actually wish there were more books done with the other POV such as This Man series, she has teased us with some parts done in Jesse’s POV and they have been fantastic, if she would write that whole series again in his POV I would buy it in a second.

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