The End of the End of the Alphabet

19 Nov The End of the End of the Alphabet

    It’s always a little sad when the LOL wraps up a book. The End of the Alphabet is quick book, a short read. While many of our members are away traveling at this time, a small handful of us read this little book with the big message. A love story; a coming to terms with death story; a quirky, quick  travel through cities and countries and the hearts of a husband and wife team devastated by the impending end of their life together.

I enjoyed the book, though I admit I’m in agreement with a number of women reviewers from Goodreads. Leah said,

The book is sparse and the prose is lovely. Ultimately it’s a nice little study on coming to terms with death (of oneself or a loved one). I had hoped that it would be a little bit quirkier than it actually was, so I wasn’t completely satisfied with it at the end. However, it’s still a nice little gem I’m glad to have discovered.

While Kim said,

Read it in an hour. To me, it felt like reading a short story more than a novel. I found that reading through a second time was actually enjoyable. It seems to be written in a circle, and you almost need to reread the beginning after getting to the end. Perhaps this is because when I was done reading it, it felt unfinished, lacking in it’s brevity…I felt for the characters, but not touched by them.

I too cared for the characters but went away with the sense that they were somehow incomplete, rather like Ambrose’s life. The book didn’t stir any great outpouring of emotion. It was almost curt…too short? Interestingly, some male reviewers were much more positive about the very brevity of the book and were more stirred by its lack of verbose sentimentality. Hmm…now isn’t that odd…

This from David:

I’ll just say that the author does a masterful job of creating, in a very short space, two characters that you not only believe in but care about and relate to. Strangely enough, though, these believable characters inhabit a highly imaginative world and story that is one step removed from reality. The writing style reminds me of Jeanette Winterson in its creative use of language, description and setting, though nothing is as fantastical as in her works. Everything is just real enough to evoke strong emotions of understanding and connection, while just un-real enough to make this seem more a fable or morality tale than a novella.
As mentioned, this is a short book that can be read in a couple of hours. It is beautiful, sad, heartwarming, devastating and imaginative. It’s the newest addition to my list of all-time favorites, which is a very short list.

Do we recommend the book? Yes! Certainly, it was different and quick enough to invest in, but from our perspective,  don’t expect to come away raving about it or forever changed by it…

3/5 Cheers!

And now….you simply MUST log in on Wednesday, when I will announce our next read.

Hint…it’s Canadian…a recent bestseller…darkly funny & deeply macabre….it’s sooo good! See you soon.