The first few scenes or the first chapter or two are energetic and exciting, and then it begins to drag. Like a snail drenched in treacle syrup. Nothing happens. Then more nothing happens. Then some more nothing keeps happening. Finally, when there are only about fifty or so pages left, the book wakes up and it’s kiss kiss bang bang again.

I noticed a lot of recent YA books are like this. Not all of them, of course, but my book rants are getting a surprisingly similar note to them.

I wonder if I’m the only one with this impression, and also if it’s related to the trilogy craze. Which makes some authors use the method of plot microdistribution in order to stretch said plot over three books. Like, you know, when you have three cakes but only enough chocolate frosting for one.

Okay, with less snark and more substance: if we apply the three-act structure, it's like the first act is extremely condensed, sometimes even to the point of sacrificing the setting, the second act is huge and bloated and keeps making pauses, and then the third act is condensed again, though less than the first one. Whereas the traditional dramatic sequence presents a consecutive quickening of pace. Things get worse and worse until the darkest moment comes--and they also get going a bit quicker the closer we come to the denouement. It's not a sudden spurt at the end--it's like spinning a merry-go-round, slow, then faster and faster until it flies off the handle and smashes into something.

P.S. And, um, this isn't one of those "ohmigod why do those published people write such books?" topic. I just want to check my impressions against those of other people. Maybe it's actually a trend.