Think back over the books that you’ve read. There have been a few. Maybe you’re a John Grisham fan or perhaps you like science fiction. Perhaps you love a good tragedy or comedy. Which book or books come to mind first? What’s are the two works of fiction that jump out at you?

Two books grab my attention. One is Ender’s Game and the other is The Testament. Two completely different genres. Ender’s Game (EG) is set in the future and The Testament (TT) is set in the present. The fate of the world hangs in the balance in EG and TT is about greed, money, and an inheritance. EG has an anti-hero who is 5-6 years old. TT has a woman missionary as the heroine with an alcoholic lawyer.

It is hard to say why we remember certain books and why other works sink into the recesses of our minds. Why do these books stand out? Perhaps it is because of the plot.

I have been writing about different plot types lately and it’s got me thinking.

Do the same drill with yourself right now and see what conclusion you reach.

One reason books catch our attention is because of bigger than life characters, but that alone is not enough. The book must have not only a great plot, but a twist as well.

In EG, Ender is set at a battle school. He is trained, passes on to new levels, and finally plays a strategy game that pits him against the buggers. The ending of the book will leave you breathless.

In TT, a billionaire leaves his money to his illegitimate daughter. While his immediate family are contesting his will, a lawyer is trying to find the heiress who is in Pantanal, South America serving as a missionary.

The writers of these books know how to lead the reader down a certain path until they surprise us with an unexpected twist. Bigger than life characters plus great plotting plus an unexpected ending equals great literature.

Let me know what you think about the plot twist.