Guide to Literary Terms

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What are the structural elements of a novel ?

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A well-written novel will have an introduction, sometimes referred to exposition, where the author lays out background information about characters and setting, a plot comprised of rising action and a turning point, or climax, followed by resolution and the end of the story.  Plot structure is sometimes depicted like a roller coaster climbing a hill, reaching the top, and then falling to the ground again. 

In the young adult novel Touching Spirit Bear by Ben Mikaelsen, for example, the opening chapters are expository in nature.  The reader meets a troubled juvenile...

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