5 famous books that almost had completely different endings

There's a fine line between a good book and a great book – and a satisfying conclusion is definitely one of the hallmarks of the latter. Yet these iconic novels almost had very different final chapters.

A photograph of a paperback book that has been sawn in half, with two different halves stuck together with sellotape.

The best endings stick with a reader. Whether it’s because that happy-ever-after has finally came to pass, because it was bittersweet in a good way, or because of that plot twist you didn’t see coming. A satisfying ending is usually one that makes sense to readers and gives us some sense of closure.

But, of course, the art of writing is never simple and authors inevitably re-draft their work at least once before readers end up with the final book in their hands. So imagine, then, if these well-known novels had ended up with the alternate endings their authors originally had planned – would they still be the books we know and love today?

Warning: there are major spoilers ahead!

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