Review: The World of the End

The World of the End
The World of the End by Ofir Touche Gafla
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

If you get a chance to read this book, I recommend giving yourself large chunks of time. At page 100, Gafla was still introducing characters. Most of them are important to the progression of the story, but it takes attentiveness to remember who everyone is.

I found this book to be a little less than its promise. Ben commits suicide so that he can join his dead wife in the other world (but only after exercising and getting buff so she’ll be happier to see him). There are some clever things here, but the afterlife is a bureaucratic mess and, in this incarnation, God plays it cute by not revealing him/herself here, either. People are housed by their date of death in endless apartment buildings that I am sure smell like boiling cabbage and have silverfish in their black and white tiled bathrooms. Dead celebrities are still hounded, your parents can still split up post-death, and crazy people can still stalk you. Gafla, what’s with the special gay section of the afterlife? Yikes!

In the end, this is about grief and forgiveness, moving on and appreciating what you still have instead of gazing longingly in the rear-view mirror. Not a bad thought.

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