Artful Readers Club - The End Specialist

Hello everyone - I'm here with a review of The End Specialist by Drew Magarymy chosen book for January and the artwork that it inspired.  For a full description of the whys and wherefores of the Artful Readers Club please pop over here.

I'll try and keep my review shorter than my usual rambles... 


The End Specialist by Drew Magary

Imagine the cure for ageing being discovered. You can still get ill. You can still die through murder or natural disease or stupidity but once you've taken the cure you wont age. So potentially you could live forever. Or a few hundred years at least. Would you take the cure? Could you watch your friends and family who don't take it, wither away and die? Or on the flipside could you promise to have and to hold... for all eternity. What about political repercussions, religious, environmental... could our world sustain an ever growing population?

The story is told retrospectively through the journal of the central character and also various blog/news headlines. I found this side of the novel didn't work for me. I just can't believe someone would record the events in as much detail as he did... down to pauses, other peoples conversations etc, etc. I didn't buy into that side of it. However if you switch that part off, just ignore it, it's such a good book. When I initially started reading I didn't think I'd like it - the style of writing didn't feel like it was hooking me in. However I found myself talking about the issues raised with my partner.Every time something else happened  in the book, both positive and negative I would talk to him about it. We all think about immortality - I'm sure of it, but there were so many issues raised in this novel that hadn't even occurred to me. All of a sudden I was at the end of the novel and I had been completely drawn in. I didn't like the end - it wasn't a satisfying conclusion for me and I still had questions... however I do recommend the book. It will have you questioning a lot of things. Even now,  a couple of weeks after finishing I still find myself mulling it over.

Who wants to live forever? After reading The End Specialist... Not me. But another half century or so would be nice...

Just on a side note - my copy was the e-book and that comes with extra's at the end that the 'real' book doesn't. Mine was bought last January in the Kindle sales for a bargain 99p.

I decided to do a journal page after reading this book. Honestly, I could have written pages and pages and pages of thoughts. I think a lot about life and death and immortality and time travel (that's not in the book but I think about it a lot) and what if's...  On a daily basis actually. This book had me looking at things in a different light if I'm honest. Eventually I settled on a couple of quotes that made me smile instead.

The background has been in my journal for ages and ages. Mainly made up of left over paint and mist, stencils wiped off etc. I built it up with Lyra Aquacolour crayons, tissue and  Posca pen. 

My February book will be:


See you then, if not before (am determined to get a Rocking Friday post done this week!) Thanks for stopping by :)

40 comments:

  1. Enjoyed the review, found it helpful in deciding whether I would want to read it or not .... Leave you to decide which. Certainly have never wanted to be young for ever or live on and on.
    Good idea for the artwork, picking out quotes that provoke thought.
    I'm afraid I was too literal, and have cut and cut my review down to bare bones to comply with 'Keep it short'. Never mind, there's always another one.
    Have missed your blogging.

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  2. Thanks for your review - don't think it's my type of book, but I love the journal page it inspired and especially the quotes you found to use. Looking forward to the next one!

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  3. The review was fabulous Carmen, very thought provoking! And the artwork fabulous, I had sooooooooo much fun working in my journal - I'd forgotten how much! Right off to read some more reviews

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  4. Love your journal pages Carmen. You might like to snap a pic of something that has made you smile this week and link it on my blog....after all you can never have too many smiles can you?
    Hugs,
    A x

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  5. That book sounds like something I would enjoy, actually, I like it when someone takes a simple premise like "what if we never aged" and then really thinks into the details of all the implications and repercussions....

    Love your journal page, what a gorgeous textural background

    And I look forward to next month's review very much as I have the brave, intuitive painting book but haven't read it yet

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    1. He really does go into it... And watching the news lately, it gives you chills how easily some things are happening already just with us living longer...

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  6. That book doens't sound my sort of thing either but looks as though someone had fun getting painty! Yay! Loving those textured journal pages and happy to see you getting creative again. x

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  7. Love your art journal pages... the background... color and words... and the book sounds interesting... maybe one I could tackle down the track... thanks for the review... and have your February book in my collection... will be interested to hear your view...

    Jenny ♥

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  8. This sound like an awesome read! That's what gets me with the whole vampire thing. The eternity. I think it's overrated. :) Great artwork!

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  9. Hugely thought provoking review and a wonderful journal page and quote to boot. A good review gets me to think about something I wouldn't usually pick off the shelf and you have succeeded with this one.

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  10. Oh, I so love your journal page. Why do my backgrounds never end up like that? I know, because I don't try enough... :)
    I'm not sure about this book. I don't want to live forever, just want to live long enough to meet my grand children! ♥

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  11. Your journal page is fabulous! Love all the layers :) I have thought of immortality, especially when I went through the Anne Rice vampire novels, who hasn't? But there are so many issues that are raised, like you said. It's an interesting topic!

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  12. I love your journal page.....the colors is fabulous. Not sure about the book, but love your honest review.

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  13. Oh interesting book..sounds like a good read.

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  14. Intriguing review. That's for posting it. I love the colors in your art. Michelle V.

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  15. The books really sounds quite interesting, though I couldn't find it for Kindle. Unless, the name has changed. The same author with the same idea has a book with a different name on Amazon -- http://www.amazon.com/dp/B0052RHFM2/ref=rdr_kindle_ext_tmb but it's also like 12 bucks. I would have loved to have stumbled upon this one for 99 cents as I likely would have grabbed it, too.

    The artwork is awesome. Nicely done!

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    1. Yes, in the US it goes under the title The Postmortal :-)

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  16. This sounds like a very though provoking book, I had to grin at you thinking about time travel on a daily basis. love love love the journal page, scrummy texture, and the little white circles and dots make me smile...yeah i know its the simple things in life haha

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  17. An interesting book by the sound of it. If it got you thinking and talking it must have some searching subject matter in it. I must admit that I am intrigued and may well search it out to read in the future. Loving your journal pages and the quotes you have used.

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  18. Mmm...interesting choice of book Carmen...I certainly love the artwork it inspired! And if you're still thinking about it now...well, it obviously has merit!
    Hugs xx

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  19. The artwork is very inspiring. But I popped over to invite you to my virtual birthday party... you coming??? jenx

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  20. Thanks ever so much for your book review - it's now on my list of 'to reads' - it sounds very intriguing and I think I might enjoy it.

    Great artwork - your quotes are fab.

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  21. Love your art journal pages. Excellent quotes that I will be adding to my collections. I've actually pinned the second quote onto my Pinterest board entitled "Words to Live By". The book sounds really interesting is now on the top of my "to read" list. Thanks for sharing your great review and art.

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  22. Ooooo, you'll be doing Flora Bowley next?! Can't wait to see what ensues!!

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  23. Fabulous art journal pages! Interesting choice of book and something I am glad is not an option at the present time!! I am keeping a list of stuff I shall try to read in the future and your book is on it.

    Janet xx

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  24. I think I would love to live just a little longer but not for ever just to read all the books I now all of a sudden want to read after reading all the reviews :0 Great art work and I can't wait to hear about your next book I have it in my studio and I love it!
    manonX

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  25. It's a funny old subject, isn't it? The book sounds interesting with the issues it raises. Your journal pages are yum-scrum - love the colours, textures and great quotes :)

    xx

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  26. Love your pages, the blend of colour and use of quotes. Sounds like a very thought provoking book. Have recorded the title for a future read.
    Jen x

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  27. Wotcha, me again :) I've started reading the Flora Bowley book, can't wait to see what you think of it. I'm struggling a little with the general "hippy-drippy"-ness of it, but her work is lovely. I found this fab video of her at play, which you might enjoy watching if you haven't seen it already: http://vimeo.com/58224937

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  28. Great journal pages! I also have your february book, and haven't read it yet myself... For some reason i didn't put any of my new art books in my list of 12

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  29. loving your gorgeous colourful journal pages..and the quotes....so true!
    Looking forward to your review on Flora's book...been tempted by it for some time!
    Thanks as always for your lovely comments,they never fail to bring a smile. So funny that the budgie never made it from your crafty space...did your sweet hubby even get to open it?;) Sending huge hugs to you xx

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  30. I just want to reach out and touch all those gorgeous layers on that page...the colors and quotes are FABulous...great review of Magery's book.

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  31. Sounds like a thought provoking book. I do like to be provoked from time to time so I might look for it after I exhaust my growing list. The quotes on the art pages are also thought provoking.

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  32. I totally agree. The idea of living forever brings so many problems that is more terrifying that the uncanny bits about dying. Heck, the world is glaring at the fact that people are living longer than they expected, can you imagine eternity paying pensions?

    Love your quotes and the sharpness, roughness, and mixed nature of the colors. They reinforce the idea that the notion of everlasting live would be difficult to deal with, and that everybody would have something to say ;-)

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  33. I have to say I am intrigued and may even recommend this one for my book club! Your journal pages are beautiful! I can't wait to see what you will do with Flora's book!

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  34. Fabulous review Carmen, I would automatically say yes, but then i'm prepared to eat my neighbours to survive lol. Gorgeous lupy background, and the quotes ...awesome :D XXX

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  35. Sounds so interesting! And I love your journal page (with all those lovely layers and colors) that was inspired by it - fab quote too, xoxo

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  36. This really sounds like my sort of book so it's going on the list :) I love the artwork you've produced and the quotes you've used made me smile too.

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  37. Not sure it's the right sort of book for me at the moment with my head already too full of thoughts but it does sound fantastically thought provoking !

    Your journal page is absolutely scrummy and full of layers and I just want to stroke it!

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  38. I really want to read the book now!! I am going to look out for it.

    Don't you love those half started with left over paint pages. Pull them together quickly and done. With so much layering and goodness. Easy Peasy. I need to actually finish some now!! haha

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