Discussion in 'Book Discussion' started by aguywhotypes, Apr 22, 2014.
Care to say why?
Dune is a good example.
I tried Googling this question, and almost every book mentioned that (1) was written after 1950 and (2) I had read was, in my opinion, not third person omniscient but instead third person limited with a shifting viewpoint--sometimes, admittedly, a very frequently shifting viewpoint. I suspect that I disagree with the standard definition of third person omniscient.
How do you interpret TPO? That there must be a clearly discernible "narrator" apart from the characters?
Personally if the POV does not stay with a single character at least for the entire scene, and each character expresses their own thoughts and feelings, I consider the POV to be TPO. For instance, most of David Drake and David Weber's books are (in my view) TPO. Weber's "Safehold" series is a good example. The POV moves all the time, and there is exposition that comes from a non-character narrator.
However, I'm not really invested in the definitions of "close" and "omniscient" third party POV and don't get excited if someone disagrees.
Most books that exist.
OK.. I get it.. anything that makes you want to keep reading.. this makes the most sense. It doesn't always have to start with a bang..
Off the top of my head, Arthur Haley's Hotel qualifies, especially when the narrator gets into the inner workings of the hotel itself in a way that no human POV character could. Real fly-on-the-wall stuff.
I realize that this question was more than two months ago, but since the thread was brought back to life, I figured I'd answer it.
I suppose that to me, omniscient is based on the narrator having more than one character's knowledge at once, or non-character knowledge. To write some purple prose:
"Shut up!" Jane shouted at the cat. Little did she know that tomorrow she would bitterly regret those words. Across town, a band of catnappers was gathering, and its leader was eager anticipating the profits from the sale of Jane's beloved Siamese. She thought that he was just a sweet, if noisy, feline idiot; the leader knew that hidden within him were the genes required to reproduce the Pharoah's magical temple cats, and that would be all he needed to control the minds of every household cat in the world!
And there you have third person omniscient in a nutshell.
I'm sure you can be more purple than that. Or were you referring to the type color?
I did fall down on the purple intensity; I just couldn't make sufficiently florid words come out.
Separate names with a comma.