Show vs. Tell

He glanced at the ceiling and paused, as if wondering if he could trust her.

I tend to dislike this kind of narrative inference from the POV character. It's by no means "wrong"; it's just not my preference. To me, it's as if the author doesn't trust herself (that she couldn't make it apparent simply by action or dialogue) or the readers (that they couldn't figure it out), and that she's taking the experience away from the readers. I dislike it when the author tries to explain everything, for fear that the readers won't "get it."

Think about the movies. When an actor emotes and makes an expression ("glanced at the ceiling and paused"), you don't hear a V.O. saying "he didn't trust her." The scene, action, dialogue, etc. are supposed to convey that. The typical "show vs. tell" issue here. I'd rather see this ("she" is the POV character):

He glanced at the ceiling and paused.
"It's not about trust," she said, chiding him. He glanced away and cleared his throat.


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