Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Foreshadowing + An Extremely Thin Metaphor

As I previously mentioned, I have a 30-minute walk to and from my office. I know this route by rote, having walked it twice every weekday since September. I’ve seen the sights, braved the elements, and made friends with all of the cats in their respective windows. (The ginger one in the art gallery is my favorite.) It’s rare that something surprises me on my commute. I take everything in stride.

Today though, I was stopped short outside of the corner pizza place. There, on the sidewalk in front of me, was the lonely top of an Oreo. “How odd!” I thought. (I have not yet resorted to talking to myself, despite my lack of an iPod.) It was definitely out of the ordinary, but it wasn’t unimaginable. Shrugging it off, I continued on. Not 10 feet later, I found the Oreo’s other half, lying cream side up. I laughed out of sheer delight. How neatly that little arc resolved!

The rest of the walk, I mulled over the split Oreo. That “aha!” moment of discovery was the exact same thing I experience whenever an author is particularly skilled at using foreshadowing. I’ll come across something out of place in a story, something that gives me pause but doesn’t stop me completely. Sometimes, I puzzle it out and other times I blow past it. Maybe I’ll figure out what’s coming or maybe I’ll be completely surprised at what turns up later. Always though, there’s that satisfying resolution that stares me cream-side up in the face. I’m such a sucker for them both — Oreos and tasty plot devices.

Speaking of foreshadowing, I’ve got several reviews up my sleeve. (This is not really foreshadowing, as I’m just going to tell you what’s coming.) Stay tuned for my thoughts on Stephanie Perkins’ Anna and the French Kiss, Andrea Cremer’s Nightshade, and Brenna Yovanoff’s The Replacement.

1 comment:

  1. Haha, I loved the metaphor! I totally feel the same when reading good foreshadowing.

    However... How the hell can someone throw away an Oreo like that?!