This literary device is used to create a suspenseful pause when a story or plotline ends suddenly. When a large plot twist has occurred and is left unresolved, your reader will literally read the next instillment or proceeding chapters just to find out what happens. They are an important tool used to encourage your audience to continue reading. We can think of a cliffhanger as bait to create interest as readers progress from one book to the next. They are common to serially published novels, which end at a dramatic or suspenseful moment.