Cliffhangers keep your reader interested. A micro-cliffhanger at the end of each chapter makes your book hard to put down. It yanks the reader into the story and holds him there. When a chapter ends with urgency or uncertainty, it provides a springboard not closure. The reader desperately wants to know what will happen next. Cliffhangers turn a novel into a page-turner! It’s every writer’s dream to have someone rapidly tearing through his or her book to discover the dénouement!
A cliffhanger at the end of book, especially a book in a series, takes on an entirely different twist. Sometimes, it’s just plain mean! While you want your readers to be frantically preordering the next installment, you don’t want to make them angry. It’s hard to wait a year or longer to find out what happens in Book 2, especially if there’s a chance your favorite character is dead! Show your readers a little mercy. Make each book complete unto itself but leave some tantalizing bits unexplained. Leave the door open; give a foreshadowing of who is waiting on the threshold; but don’t leave the hero bleeding on the floor!