First vs. third person

Use this forum to discuss the April 2019 Book of the month, "Adrift" by Charlie Sheldon
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Re: First vs. third person

Post by Niski » 03 May 2019, 12:27

I think that maybe he was trying to add some layering to his story. I am not a big fan of this style, but in this book I feel like it worked.

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Post by YL_Eytka » 05 May 2019, 05:32

I think it just changed because some parts required a more emotion-based narrative while others required some sense of omnipotence

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Post by Bluebird03 » 06 May 2019, 09:23

I've read books narrated from both perspectives and really do not have a preference. First person seems to be more personal an can divulge exactly what that person is thinking, but the third person narrative is able to see the broader picture and portray what one person might miss.

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Post by Azrevread » 06 May 2019, 15:12

I think that the author's use of presenting the characters in Adrift as being both the observer and the observed, gave a certain depth to the novel. It gives the reader the opinions of Steve, Louise, Travis, Pete and Myra while also providing the point of view of the other characters in the story.

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Post by prospero360 » 08 May 2019, 04:08

I noticed this as well, and the lack of consistency in the narration perspective was certainly confusing at times. I think the author should have narrated the story from the perspective of one character.

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Post by Ak1412 » 10 May 2019, 10:16

It's always interesting to see how authors play with pov because it emphasizes the point of what they want to show you.

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Post by imSunshine » 11 May 2019, 04:19

I do not recall noticing this until you said it..Thanks for the hint, for me, I think that the author just wants the readers to relate to the scenario like what you said in Steve's side.

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Post by janinewesterweel » 11 May 2019, 05:09

If you all go back and read the thread by the author, it should answer some of these questions. Directly "from the horse's mouth" as it were, and a great insight into an author's thoughts during the writing process. ;)
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Post by Jlbaird85 » 14 May 2019, 01:59

I am not a fan of authors switching between first person and third person. I do find I enjoy books more when written in third person. In this case, I really thought it might be the authors attempt to make the characters more relatable, but it was confusing for me.
All the world’s a stage,
And all the men and women merely players;
They have their exits and their entrances;
And one man in his time plays many parts

Shakespeare-As You Like It Act II, Scene VII

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Post by babcockar » 14 May 2019, 09:58

I think it takes a lot of skill at writing to pull off both first and third person in the same book. I think here it is very intentional and deliberate. It makes the distinction between the two characters' viewpoints very well.

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Post by Uinto » 15 May 2019, 07:36

For effect, the author has used the first person narrative for primary characters and the third for secondary characters.

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Post by Onyinye Excel » 17 May 2019, 14:18

I think the author should havery employed one writing narration style throughout. Preferably second person narrative.
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Post by SavannaEGoth » 17 May 2019, 21:05

I haven't yet read this book, so I wasn't even aware of this issue. I can totally get down with an author wanting to utilize different writing styles and voice to better illustrate different characters when switching perspective within a book. In fact, I quite enjoy books told from multiple perspectives. However, knowing that the points of view themselves also change from character to character feels . . . wrong. I don't recall ever having come across something like that in a book before, but I would probably find it irritable and would find the book to be inconsistent as a result.

Has anyone had any issues with it distracting them or otherwise disrupting their reading flow? Is it very jarring or does it detract from your enjoyment of the book at all?
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Post by Tiffanyli » 20 May 2019, 13:07

It was different. I'd never read a book where the author used first and third person and it made it slightly confusing. But the use of both was able to give me a broader perspective in terms of what was happening outside of the characters view in the story. The use of the characters name before starting the chapter definitely helped a bit though and it was nice to read more than one persons thoughts in first person, giving a better understanding of more than one character of the story.

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Post by OliviaLouise » 21 May 2019, 06:35

I get why this would come up, because if not done properly, POV shifts can quickly become disorienting. I do think that it is possible to use both well, however.

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