Saturday, February 6, 2016

Release Day Review: Not Quite the End of the World by Jonathan-David Jackson

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Not Quite the End of the World by Jonathan-David Jackson
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Publication Date: February 6, 2016

Charles has his life organized just the way he wants it. But when a freak accident plunges his city into anarchy, Charles and his boss, Janet, must journey to a distant town where things are simpler. Along the way they encounter a particularly hot sun, possibly dirty water, cans that can't be opened, impolite cannibals and sore feet. But in a world where the only trail mix has no chocolate chips, can things ever go back to the way they were?

My review:
Humorous, post-apocalyptic spoof, poking fun at all the things we (some more than others) take for granted or call important (that really aren’t). Pairing up with his boss and other unlikely allies, Charles reluctantly leaves everything he knows behind on a quest to find an acceptable alternative to being burned alive in his house after the apocalypse hits.

This book’s a lot of fun, and I especially enjoyed the tongue-in-cheek logic the character’s use throughout. There were several times I laughed out loud, and there were a lot of spots where I was sorely tempted to highlight a phrase for later, particularly those that began to make a rather surprising degree of sense after a little thought. Despite the humorous intent, I picked up on some interesting ideas and views sprinkled in here and there, particularly about right and wrong and how those can change during hard times.

On the other hand, I sometimes had trouble distinguishing between the voices of the various characters. The story is third person, but that person switches out. Sometimes it’s a very clear transition, but others I had to pick up on context. Additionally, some ambiguous pronoun usage led to occasional confusion, though, again, context usually helped me figure it out.

So, overall, I really liked this book for its irreverent, mature humor and its unique take on the end of the world. Folks who enjoy absurd stories that are still logically sound would like this story; I know it sounds like an oxymoron, but the author pulls it off.

I received the review copy of this book from the author as an ARC.

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