Plot Flaws and Inconsistencies in Popular Fiction


In Season 7 of The Big Bang Theory, Sheldon faces a rude awakening when Amy explains a major plot hole in Indiana Jones: Raiders of the Lost Ark. She argues that the same outcome would have happened regardless of Harrison Ford’s presence. That was a movie, and we all know movies have many story flaws. But what about your favorite books? We found ten books that have major plot holes that are sure to make you as angry as Sheldon!

harry potterHarry Potter Series by J.K. Rowling

Where to begin? While we love the Harry Potter series, it is riddled with plot holes. Let’s just pick a few like: why wasn’t everyone given Veritaserum (it makes you tell the truth) from the beginning? Why could Harry not see Thestrals until book five? Why didn’t they just use a time turner and kill Voldemort before he murdered Harry’s parents? Why don’t wands change allegiance every time someone uses Expelliarmus on them? The list goes on and on…


lotr-coverLord of the Rings by J.R.R. Tolkien

Anyone who writes that many lengthy books is going to make mistakes. The biggest plot hole seems to be that of the eagle. Why didn’t they get the eagles to fly the ring to Mount Doom? That would have saved a lot of time and effort. While that’s definitely the biggest one, there are others that stem from characters (who is the eldest being in Middle-earth, Tom or Treebeard?) to chronology.


angels and demonsAngels & Demons by Dan Brown

Besides the fact that Dan Brown starts his novels with “FACT: References to all works of art, tombs, tunnels, and architecture in Rome are entirely factual (as are their exact locations). They can still be seen today. The brotherhood of the Illuminati is also factual”, there are several translation issues, geography issues, and pure common sense issues that occur in Angels & Demons. For instance, it is said that Vittoria can’t get a dial tone on her cell because they are underground. I’m not sure anyone can get a dial tone on their cell phone…


huck finnThe Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain

There are many major errors Mark Twain made with character development in Huckleberry Finn– to a point in which readers are not certain whether or not Tom Sawyer is the character in Tom Sawyer and Huckleberry Finn. However, one of the biggest problems comes not from Mark Twain himself, but from whomever decided to remove “The Raftsman Passage” chapter from later editions of the book. This chapter gives Huck knowledge about where their raft is on the river—which he uses in the next chapter. Without “The Raftsman Passage” it seems like he picked it up telepathically.

divergentDivergent by Veronica Roth

There are several plot holes in the entire series that are just never answered. It seems that someone apart from Tris would have figured out sooner that you don’t have to pick a faction and that some people aren’t going to fit into just one. Looking at the series as a whole, without Allegiant (the third in the series) there would have been far less holes in the timeline. Isn’t it odd that no one questioned anything until Tris came along?


twilightTwilight by Stephenie Meyer

While everyone now seems embarrassed to read the Twilight series, at one point everyone was reading it. There were some serious flaws amongst plot and characters. For example, why did no one notice they never aged (especially “teenagers” in high school)? And while the whole imprinting business in the fourth novel was a mess, there is also the fact that the plot of the entire second book was based on a nosebleed. We understand that Edward did not trust his family to be around Bella for fear she might get hurt—but haven’t they been around blood before? They do go to school…

Hunger_gamesThe Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins

The Hunger Games is a great series—full of action, love, and suspense. However, with every series like this, there comes plot holes and inconsistencies. First off—in the first novel, why did the Careers not kill Peeta after the found Katniss? It seems like he would have served his purpose. Also, if there are so many modern conveniences of Panem—why are people still going down into mines? Yes, we know that their district is the “mining district”, but they could find a better way of doing this.


i am pilgrimI Am Pilgrim by Terry Hayes

While this is a fairly new and popular novel, there were some issues with the storytelling aspect. The story is told from the point of view of Pilgrim—even though readers don’t know that until later in the novel. He says he gets his information from transcripts, but mostly he talks about dialogue he could have no way of knowing. While a thrilling tale, there are just some inconsistencies we could do without.



gone girlGone Girl by Gillian Flynn

The beginning of this book starts off very clever—what happened to Amy? Did Nick kill her? Was she taken? But then, it begins to unravel a bit. (Spoiler’s if you’re planning on reading the book/seeing the movie!) Why didn’t they examine Amy more thoroughly to find out she didn’t have a head wound? Why wouldn’t they see that Desi overdosed on sleeping pills in his tox screen? Also- the whole pregnancy thing at the end (while being just simply creepy) was never clearly tied up.


Fifty-Shades-of-GreyFifty Shades of Grey Series by E.L. James

Apart from the terrible grammar issues in these novels, there are some consistency issues as well. There really is no story—with most of it seeming like it was made up on the spot. While that’s fine, there are other issues. From foot fetishes that are never developed, to Christian’s childhood mysteries—there is a lot that never comes full circle.

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