An epistolary novel is a novel written as a series of documents. The usual form is letters, although diary entries, newspaper clippings and other documents are sometimes used. Recently, electronic "documents" such as recordings and radio, blogs and e-mails have also come into use. The word epistolary comes from the Latin word epistola, meaning a letter.
The epistolary form can add greater realism and verisimilitude to a story, chiefly because it mimics the workings of real life. It is thus able to demonstrate differing points of view without recourse to the device of an omniscient narrator.