Review: A Long Way Down

A Long Way Down
A Long Way Down by Nick Hornby
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

It’s official. Nick Hornby’s wonderful. In this book, four strangers meet on the roof of a building on New Year’s Eve. Each plans to to commit suicide. Over the next 300 pages, they don’t fall in love, become millionaires, or even become best friends, but they do help each other find reasons to stay alive. You wouldn’t think a novel about killing yourself could be heartwarming, funny, thoughtful, and rude, but this one is.

Four stars instead of five because Jess’ character was too ridiculous and the math in Maureen’s life did not work.

(I don’t understand how there isn’t more pizza-related violence in our society. Just imagine: You’re, like, the top whatever in Zimbabwe, brain surgeon or whatever, and then you have to come to England because the fascist regime wants to nail your ass to a tree, and you end up being patronised at three in the morning by some stoned motherfucker with the munchies . . . I mean, shouldn’t you be legally entitled to break his fucking jaw?)” [p. 30]

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