A Long Way Down Author:Nick Hornby Meet Martin, JJ, Jess, and Maureen. Four people who come together on New Year's Eve: a former TV talk show host, a musician, a teenage girl, and a mother. Three are British, one is American. They encounter one another on the roof of Topper's House, a London destination famous as the last stop for those ready to end their lives. — In four ... more »distinct and riveting first-person voices, Nick Hornby tells a story of four individuals confronting the limits of choice, circumstance, and their own mortality. This is a tale of connections made and missed, punishing regrets, and the grace of second chances.« less
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Fantastic book - explores the reasons all of us have for living (or not), in a readable way. What would you do next if you had reached the point when you felt you had nothing to live for - the answers are surprising, and certainly not sappy sweet.
This book was just terrific. As a reader, i was immediately immersed in the plot and in love with all the characters. It seems like a rather dreary thing to be reading about, but its really nice how their relationships form and grow. Great read!!!
Nick Hornby has used a unique and sometimes humorous approach to a dark subject, suicide. The four main characters, J.J., Jess, Maureen and Martin share a death wish and as the story unfolds, you will see they share so much more. It could have been a dark, somber book, but instead Nick Hornby's writing style and presentation of the story in the first person make this a great read!
Eh. I wasn't crazy about this book...it was actually one of the first ones I swapped and sent back out. It's the story of 4 people who all want to kill themselves by leaping off a building and instead, they all 4 become friends (?) and change each others lives. I felt the reasons they wanted to die were kind of lame. And the youngest character REALLY got on my nerves (as she did the characters in the book also).
XLNT read. Each character's "voice" is different. I like that the punctuation matches their personalities. The story is funny "ha ha" and funny "strange" -- not as involved a study as is "A Confederacy of Dunces" but not entirely lighthearted. Learned a few things. I feel I need to just accept each character - but maybe say a little prayer for them, just in case, you know?
My overall impression of the book is: "meh." It'd be a good read for a holiday on the beach because it's light and airy and attempts to be funny (and is, at quite a few parts, but mostly I could tell that he was just trying too hard, you know?). The premise is really interesting: four strangers each go to commit suicide atop the same building, and each is fully confident of his/her convictions behind such an act, but upon running into each other, they begin to doubt the validity of the others motives. So, they're each saying "I deserve to die," but that "you don't, because you're too young/a parent/haven't thought things through/too crazy/etc to die yourself." Essentially, they save each other. But one of the characters (Jess), really the main one who drives the story line along, is awful and rude and completely impossible to relate to, so that made the the ability to really "get sucked into" the book difficult. I had high expectations and I thought this book was just "okay".