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Question: Most Evil / Worst / Best Cliffhanger Ever?


Fortunately, I can search my blog posts for keywords, so to answer today’s question I just typed in “cliffhanger” and voila! All of the reviews that I’ve complained about cliffhangers in show up in the search results. There actually hasn’t been one in a while, either good or bad, that’s been overly memorable other than Night Broken by Patricia Briggs, but that one was more abrupt than anything else.

Sierra Dean is REAL good at one liners, and the majority of the installments in her Secret McQueen series have had awesome last sentences. And, first ones. And, chapter openers. Ok, yeah, I seriously <3 these books! Nightshade by Andrea Cremer had the mother of all cliffhangers. In fact, probably one of the best ones ever in my opinion. And, then of course there’s Darkfever, Bloodfever, Faefever… yeah, pretty much Karen Marie Moning’s entire series. But, these were more on the evil side of the spectrum.

I’m actually kind of relieved that I haven’t had to deal with an overly brutal cliffhanger in a while. It’s also probably in large part because I don’t read a lot of Young Adult—these authors LOVE their love triangles and cliffhangers.

Most Evil / Worst / Best Cliffhanger Ever?

Carmel Signature

Owner, designer and main blogger behind Rabid Reads. Avid book reader, snowboard bunny, video gamer and Supernatural fan. I love all things paranormal, werewolves especially. Oh, and I’m Canadian, eh!

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  1. Oh yeah, I was going to say that Faefever and Dreamfever were the worse cliffhangers of my LIFE. And I was fortunate enough to not start reading the Fifty Shades books until they were all out, but if there had been any kind of wait between books 1 and 2 . . . cliffhangers suck.

  2. For me, it has to be Heaven’s Spite, book five in the Jill Kismet series by Lilith Saintcrow. This book ends in the middle of a word. I am not joking you. As in, “She pulled the trig-“. When I read it, book six was not even written yet, so I was stir crazy there for a while. I should also mention that book six was the last book of the series and I knew this, so knowing all of this seemed to make it worse for me. It was a good series, but I did not like the cliffhanger.

    • OMG, that’s brutal! Authors can be so cruel sometimes. 🙁

  3. I was lucky with KMM, I didn’t read those until all 5 of the books were out. I only read a YA book after I am told there is no triangle or cliffhanger (Or I wait). I don’t do well with cliffhangers LOL

    • I read the Fever series back-to-back to, but each ending drove me crazy.

  4. Dreamfever hands down!!! I agonized for almost a year….Not fair..LOL

  5. As soon as I saw this question The Fever Series immediately came to my mind. Those cliff hangers are the mother of all cliff hangers. Thankfully I read them right after Iced came out, so it wasn’t torture. But even then they were rough because I had to wait until I could get my hands on the next book (so like 20 minutes to go to audible, purchase and download. lol)

    • But, 20 minutes can feel like an eternity, especially with KMM’s cliffhangers!

  6. I agree Fever series too

    Although I would add the The Blackstone Affair series by Raine Miller, that left a bit of a stunner

    • The Fever series seems to be a popular answer to today’s question. I wonder why! 😉

  7. Yes, the Fever series has had some truly awesome cliff-hangers! I think a cliffhanger I really hated was in book three of the Chicagoland Vampires series. And sometimes, it’s hard to actually feel excited about cliffhangers for me – when they are all for shock and awe, but don’t really move anything forward, I just get frustrated, and don’t pre-order the series anymore…

    Great topic, Carmel.

    • You’re right! How could I have forgotten about Twice Bitten. That cliffhanger was pure evil!

      • I think I’m actually two books behind in that series now, things just never were the same after that…

      • Yeah… it took a few books for that series to recover from that. I’ve enjoyed the last few though. You should give Neill a second chance. 🙂

      • I think I own the newest ones, but I haven’t gotten to them yet… Thanks for letting me know you think they got better again, though 🙂

  8. Lisa Renee Jones is also wicked with her cliffies. Iced was a ball buster too. I love cliffies but it all lies on the follow trough for me. I hate a big cliffhanger then you find out said cliff is just a foot drop

    • Iced most definitely. It’s a shame that we now have to wait ’til 2015 for the answer to that one. 🙁

  9. I’ve been reading through the Song of Ice and Fire series, and I have a feeling that I am going to be quite upset with how A Dance with Dragons ends and that I will need the next book. 🙂

    • Haha enjoy the long ass wait between books. LOL I read the first two, but I’m going to wait for HBO to give me the highlights of that series.

  10. My obvious choice is Dreamfever, although I was lucky enough to read it right before Shadowfever was released so I didn’t have to wait as long as others to get my heart back! Recently, I have to say it was Jenn Bennett’s Summoning the Night and Binding the Shadows…the last chapters of these two books had me on edge for a while. I’m not a huge fan of cliffhangers but once in a while it makes things exciting (just not when you have to wait 3 years to get closure!).

    • Agreed, Jenn Bennett’s thrown some pretty good cliffhangers at readers too! But, I don’t hold it against her because I <3 her books.

  11. I agree with you, Sierra Dean has some evil endings, so she is good with cliffies, but without making you scream.

  12. *Finally getting a break from the slave drivers…takes a quick glance around to make sure they’re not in sight…waves to Carmel*

    KMM is the Queen of Evil Cliffhangers! I’m so glad that I got started on the series late so I could read them back to back without having to wait to find out what happened.

    My girl Darynda Jones left us with a cliffhanger question (on a post it note no less) from one sinfully hot Reyes Farrow in 5th Grave that I’m dying to know the answer to.

    • I heard about the Darynda Jones cliffhanger which is why I haven’t listened to book 5 yet. 😀

  13. I was really interested to see what the responses to this question would be. I’ve not read any of The Fever Series (yeah, I know). Twice Bitten just about killed me. Another one I read is Connie Suttle. At the end of Blood Love, I just screamed, “NO!!!” The good thing, Connie releases her books so fast, we only had to wait a couple of months but….yeah, you know, I didn’t want to wait.

    • You HAVEN’T read the The Fever series? Shame on you!!! *note to self to bug Dolly til she reads KMM’s books.*

  14. I’ve not read the Fever series , so I wouldn’t know about cliffhangers there. Some cliffhangers that come to mind are: “The Evolution of Mara Dyer” by Michelle Hodkin, “Taking Back Forever” by Karen Amanda Hooper, “Of Poseidon” by Anna Banks. All of those books made me need the next book on my hands immediately.
    Great post!

    • I think all of those books are YA, eh? See what I’m talking about… YA and their darned cliffhangers!

      • Yes! YA is a particularly mean genre for cliffangers. I sometimes think they purposely end books at a certain point just to sell more! -.-

  15. 1. Faefever
    2. Dreamfever
    3. Faefever

  16. Hmm, apparently the Fever series has the biggest cliff-hangers. I don’t mind them so much but agree YA is notorious for them!

    • They aren’t bad now that they are over, but I bet at the time they were brutal!

  17. So, Night Broken has a cliffhanger? 🙁 I’m still dying to read it!

  18. I’m actually okay with cliffhangers except for contemporary romance. I feel cheated with non-endings so I really try and stay away from that!

    I need to get into the Fever series, heard so much about it!

    • I can see why cliffhangers in contempt would bug you; I expect a HEA at the end of the book in pretty much any romance subgenre.

  19. I read the Fever series back to back so to be honest I don’t remember the endings-it was just like one huge book for me. Amber Lynn Natusch’s, Caged series has had some pretty evil ones but I love her books so much, I am not complaining. Karina Halle’s Ashes to Ashes-well let’s just say I almost threw my Kindle across the room!The next one can’t come soon enough.

    • I read the first 3 books in the Caged series, so I definitely agree with you about Natusch’s cliffhangers. Unfortunately, the author publishes books faster than I can read ’em so I had to quit that series.

      • The last few I was lucky enough to get ARC’s of, so I didn’t have to wait as long as most people. But then Amber’s books are ones I otherwise buy the day they come out. It has gotten so good Carmel-you should try it again when you have time!

  20. If I hadn’t read the Fever series back to back a few weeks before Shadowfever was released I would say that Dreamfever was the worst cliffhanger I experienced.

    • I don’t remember which Fever cliffhanger was the worst for me, but they were all pretty bad. LOL

  21. I don’t think I’ve had a bad cliffhanger in a while. I do think you are correct though that if you read a lot of YA you tend to get more cliffhangers because of the fact that all of those books are parts of a series. I would say an evil cliffhanger was in The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer, awesome story but horrible cliffhanger that left you screaming for more.

    • I used to read a lot of books with cliffhangers, so when I was researching my answer to this question I realized that the main reason why I haven’t come across one in a while is because I mostly gave-up YA.

  22. Okay, two of the most brutal cliffhangers ever are in the Vampire Academy books and Chicagoland Vampires. (must be those bloodsuckers, eh?) I was lucky enough to read VA later so I didn’t have to wait for the next one, but with Chloe Neill’s book I was screaming like everyone else!

    Exciting cliffhangers like that I don’t mind, though–it’s the ones that feel manipulative or choppy that I hate.

    Wendy @ The Midnight Garden

    • I haven’t read the VA books, but I totally threw Neill’s novel across the room after her evil cliffhanger.

  23. KMM is definitely a queen of cliffhangers. Fortunately I read those back to back, but there was one in particular that I was up in the wee hours of the morning buying an ebook when I should have given up and gone to sleep. Chloe Neill did a bad one as well as one of Kim Harrison’s got me too. Cliffhangers drive me crazy!

    • Haha yes, I’ve made a few early morning book purchases myself after finishing a series installment with an evil cliffhanger.

  24. I thankfully don’t have to deal with too many cliffhangers because most of the series I read are complete by the time I roll around to them.

    The worst one that I can think of that still has me hanging is the Mara Dyer series by Michelle Hodkin. Her books are dark and kind of a swoopy roller coaster ride. The last book ended rather abruptly and I’m still waiting (like all of her readers) to find out what the heck is happening. 🙂

    Excellent topic!