Monday, January 9, 2012

Multiple Points of View

I really enjoy reading books with multiple points of view. Recent reads have been the ACROSS THE UNIVERSE books, BLOOD MAGIC and CROSSED. In looking at books with multiple points of view, it's important to get into the character's head.

A book I thoroughly enjoyed, as did my students, was ONCE UPON A MOTORCYCLE DUDE by Kevin O'Malley. The fairytale was written by his two characters, one a girl and one a boy. What made this book so special was the illustrations because they match well with the text.

For instance, the girl starts telling the story:
"Once upon a time in a castle... there lived a beautiful princess named Princess Tenderheart."

The illustrations done by Carol Heyer match the text perfectly with soft pastel colors, flowers and ponies.

Then the book takes a full 180 degree switch when the boy takes over the story:
"One day this really cool muscle dude rides up to the castle on his motorcycle."

And the illustrations are full of dark colors: blacks, reds and silvers. In fact, Heyer doesn't illustrate these but it's an entirely different illustrator, Scott Goto. There are words like volcanoes, thunder, lightning, battles, and giants.

I loved how distinctly different the characters were and their point of views. It made the story hilarious (sure it was a little stereotypical) but I couldn't help but think, this is the perfect example of a book that shows point of view switches!

Some great links for writing different POV's are:
Ultimately, it's important each character has their own distinct voice. If you were to open the book and randomly pick out a page, would you be able to identify who's telling the story at that point by the voice?

How about you? Have you written or read a great book with multiple points of views?


Larissa said...

LOL--making my first attempt now. Not feeling very successful yet, but I just started. *crosses fingers*

Andrea Mack said...

This sounds like a good read, Christy. I've tried writing with multiple POV, but ending up rewriting to change it back to a single one. It was too hard for me to tell the story I wanted to tell. But, I'd definitely try it again if it suited the story.

Kelly Polark said...

That sounds like a cute book!

Maggie Stiefvater does multiple POV well in her Shiver series!

Anonymous said...

Thanks for nice review Christy.

Kevin O

Christina Farley said...

Kevin! Oh I'm flattered you stopped by. My boys and student love your work. Cheers.

Marcia said...

I love multiple POVs. I can't remember title or author, but once I read a book with 11 POVs -- an entire class plus the teacher.

I'm using 3 POVs in my new WIP.