Why Do Fantasy Books Have TWO Different Storylines?

I’ve been on a fantasy reading kick lately, and have thrown myself into tackling some very long and complex books. This means that I have also discovered a trend that I didn’t notice until now…

Something I have picked up over the past few years of reading, is that fantasy – particularly high fantasy or those with a lot of books or characters – seem to have two separate plots. They usually link together, but the first half of the book has a plot/storyline that seems to get thrown away in the middle, and a brand new story is taken up instead with the same characters.

Don’t believe me? Let me prove it:

The Final Empire (Mistborn Book 1) by Brandon Sanderson

This one seems to start as a dystopian and magical heist, but ends up being an “overthrow the government/system” war book. The goal of the characters was the second half the whole time, but it was quite jarring to sign up for one thing and get another.

Fellowship of the Rings (Lord of the Rings Book 1) by J. R. Tolkien

First half is a journey of hobbits that don’t really know what they’re doing with a magical ring, but it ends up being lots of different beings with complete understanding of their goal and what’s going on around them. Pretty much just a growth/continuation of the story but once the others join the team, the vibes are completely different.

Throne of Glass by Sara J Maas

Okay this was was disappointing for me, I’m not going to lie. I have also heard that the first book is pretty much super different to the rest of the series… so yeah.

First half is an assassin who was destined to die a slave gets called up to the elite’s world to compete against others – and if she wins, she’s free, but it ends up being magical fae type monster situations happening that was really intense and amazingly creepy – that was when I stopped reading.

A.D. 30 by Ted Dekker

We start out with an Arabian princess style adventure, trying to avenge her child and take back her kingdom, but we end up discovering Yeshua (Jesus) as he is alive on earth and preaching a different way of life. Not mad about this one, I actually loved the two elements and interacting with JESUS, heck yes! But, it was very much two different stories that were packaged as one. Again, not mad at it.

I’m sure there are others that seem to go one way, but in the same book turn around and take you somewhere else. I’m trying to decide how I feel about it. Whether it feels like a trick, or a seamless transition, and I think it’s going to have to be a case by case basis.

See You in the Adventures!
Christy Grace

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