Cover Image: Exit


Pub Date:   |   Archive Date:

Member Reviews

Although this novel was a bit implausible and quite silly at times, I found myself enjoying it.

Our hero Felix Pink is a sweet old man on the surface, but in his spare time is a member of the Exiteers - a group of people who help assist ill people in dying.

It is Felix who made this story, and the novel employed some dark humour throughout. There are twists and turns (again, not always believable) but the humour and characterisation made it a fun and quirky read.

Was this review helpful?

I've gotten so used to dark thriller/mysteries that Exit was a surprise. It's very British in every way, probably could be called a farce, reminded me of A Man Called Ove, and even classics like Our Man in Havana. Serious things happen and there is true danger for several characters, but when Exit is funny, it's very funny. I enjoyed most of the characters very much and even sort of enjoyed the villains. Witty, well-plotted, and engrossing. I finished it in twenty-four hours.

Was this review helpful?

I loved Snap by Belinda Bauer. It's one of my favourite thrillers.

This book is equally good. I wasn't sure what to expect and I was pleasantly surprised. In the beginning I couldn't really connect with the story but the more I read the more I was entrenched in the story.
The author has done a fantastic job with the plotting of this amazing novel.

‘Exit’ is primarily about euthanasia. 75 year old Felix Pink is an exiteer - an exiteer is someone who sits with the terminally ill who wish to exit their world of pain and suffering. The exiteers aren’t allowed to assist the person to die, infact they stay within the law. However, when Felix enters number 3 Black Lane with newbie exiteer 23 year old Amanda in tow, something goes very wrong, an assisted suicide gone awry and it puts the pair of them in an illegal situation. Felix needs to evaluate just what went wrong, and decide at what point he should go to the police and surrender himself.

I adored Felix. He has led a boring and predictable life, all up until he becomes an Exiteer. Felix tugged at my heartstrings and brought a smile to my face.

The plot is dark, but there is so much wit and humor. The pacing and the characterisations along with the witty dialogues completely engage you. I wasn't expecting the plot twists which shows the skill of Bauer.

Definitely recommend this book.

Thanks to Netgalley and the publishers for sending a digital ARC in exchange for an honest review.

Was this review helpful?

Superb book. Surprising, touching, can't recommend enough.
Felix Pink works as an undercover Exiteer, helping out with support for those with a terminal illness. When an assignment goes horribly wrong, Felix thinks it's only a matter of time before the police come knocking. However, things are not as they seem and we encounter a whole host of characters with unsavoury motives and dubious connections. Beautiful characters, great dialogue, with sublime plotting keeps you guessing till the very end.

Was this review helpful?

Exit is a heartwarming tale full friendship, greed, family and humor. This story read more like a cozy mystery than a thriller. Felix is an Exiteer. His job is to provide comfort and peace during a person’s last breath. He personally finds solace in this act, until something goes horribly wrong and life as he knows it is changed forever. His sleuthing skills are put to the test as he tries to clear his conscience and uncover the truth. My heart rooted for Felix as he fumbled his way through this twisty tale. Exit is a character driven mystery full of interesting personalities with many laughs along the way. Thank you NetGalley and Grove Atlantic for my ARC.

Was this review helpful?

This was a very different but very entertaining story! It was clever and very fun! There were a lot humourous scenes and I found myself grinning a lot. It started off slow and but I raced through the second half. There were so many twists and turns. And the ending was perfect!
The characters were well written and realistic. I adored Felix.
Thank you to the publisher for the copy.

Was this review helpful?

This delightful book is dark humor at its finest. The characters are well-defined and treated with respect, no matter how minor they are, and the writing keeps the reader engaged from start to finish. It is one of those rare read-in-one-sitting books. Ms. Bauer has done it again!

NetGalley provided a copy of this book in exchange for an unbiased and honest review.

Was this review helpful?

Felix Pink works as a so called Exiteer which means he accompanies people during their last hours to decently transit from this to another world. Normally, they work in pairs and so far everything has gone quite smoothly. They do not leave any clues about their presence and don’t use their real names even with their colleagues. When Felix is called to his next client, it is his first job together with Amanda who is new to the business. When they have accomplished their task, a bit more demanding since the old man this time seems to have become reluctant to die in the last second, they are about to leave the house. At this moment, somebody shouts for them, obviously, they haven’t been alone in the house as expected, but there was a witness – waiting for them to assist his suicide. Felix and Amanda have made a huge mistake and have to face reality: they have just killed somebody and the police are already on their way.

“He had made a terrible mistake, but hoped there was a good reason why. He just hadn’t found it yet.”

I was first allured by the idea of the Exiteer business since assisted suicide has been fiercely discussed and surely isn’t an easy topic. However, Belinda Bauer’s novel turned out quite differently than expected. From the rather serious and gloomy start, an incredible plot develops which is full of fine irony and humour, wonderful characters who are diligently drawn and all the absurdities life can offer.

“‘Bloody hell,’ said Pete. ‘I did not see that coming.’ Calvin thought that spoke well of Pete, because you’d have to be pretty sick to see that coming.”

Felix Pink is a decent elderly widower who is a bit lonesome but as Exiteer has found a task which gives him the feeling of being helpful. Finding himself suddenly in the middle of a crime is something he absolutely cannot cope with. He is full of pangs of conscience which leads him to worsen the situation even more. Yet, it is not only the Exiteer who is breath-taking to observe but also the dead man’s family – consisting of his son Reggie and his father Skipper – who have quite some story to offer and also the police is a set of extraordinary characters.

A remarkable plot which offers quite some surprises one surely cannot see coming.

Was this review helpful?

Loved this! So good, so exciting, so gripping and great story. Can't wait to read more by this author - absolutely brilliant.

Was this review helpful?

Thank you to NetGalley and Grove Atlantic for this copy of Exit by Belinda Bauer.

The best word that I can use to describe Exit by Belinda Bauer is delightful. I love stumbling on to a book that I have never heard of but thoroughly enjoy and Exit is a perfect example of this. Exit is the story of Felix Pink, a man who just wants to help sick and dying people by being a witness to their last moments. Felix is an Exiteer. When something goes wrong on a what should be a very routine Exiteer visit Felix is faced with some choices that he would very much like to avoid.

I truly loved this book and it's delightful cast of characters. Even the bad guys are written in such a way that they seem not as terrible as their crimes. I found myself chuckling and really engaging with the characters, which is not so easy to do sometimes when reading fiction. I loved this book so much that I have already suggested it to my circle of reader friends, knowing that they will enjoy the exploits of Felix Pink as much as I did. This book was a true joy and I will definitely be checking out other Belinda Bauer books next!

Was this review helpful?

It's been a very long time since I've been properly excited about reviewing a book! I'm about to start shoving this beauty on everyone's face. This was an absolute joy to read.
This is my first experience with Belinda Bauer. I'm in awe of her talent, I just love her. She definitely is part of my list of favorite authors now.
"Exit" is s delightful and original thriller with a dark and witty sense of humor, following Felix Pink a senior employee of Exit, a secret organization with the purpose of helping terminally ill people as they carry on their assisted suicide. The employees of Exit (or exiteers) essential task is to lend moral support, and get rid of all evidence of the suicide, but will, in any case, interfere physically with the process.
Felix new case is with a new partner, a young woman named Amanda. They will be sitting with Skipper, who wants to end his life after a lost battle with lung cancer. Once there, they carry on with their mission like usual, until Skipper lost the grip on his mask, and Amanda, in a rush of excitement, helps him to it. Everything went south when he realized they helped the wrong man, and the police are on their way.
This is one of the most amazingly well-crafted books I've ever read. The writing is charming, with a precise equilibrium of suspense and witty humor that kept me bewitched the entire time. I honestly enjoyed every sentence. The events were suspenseful, there is no way to guess the ending. Even the characters' names were chosen to entertain. I don't think that I will ever get over this book. I love it so much.
Many thanks to Netgalley and Grove Atlantic for my e-copy.

Was this review helpful?

I wasnt sure I was going to like this book but I did. The characters were great, and such a different topic as well. At first I found it hard to connect too, but Im glad I continued because I really liked it.

Was this review helpful?

“Somehow he had always imagined himself to be a small part of a much bigger network. A cog in a reasonably sized machine. Not a battleship or a jet fighter, of course, but a steam traction engine, perhaps, or a church clock. It was rather disappointing to realize that he was more of a spring in a pop-up toaster.”

Methodical, unadventurous, creature of habit Felix Pink is a widower struggling to carry on after the death of his wife. He lives with Mabel, their dog, makes himself egg with buttered bread soldiers, and keeps things as they always were.

Except. Yes, except he has stepped outside his comfort zone and joined a kind of dying-with-dignity service where he and another volunteer witness a pre-arranged suicide of a terminal customer. Felix is known only as “John” to the service and to the patient, and he and the other volunteer take no part in the activities.

They do not make any preparations – they simply remove all evidence so that the family thinks their relative died naturally and as expected. It’s a great idea and a simple one. Felix is 75 and is familiar with thinking about and dealing with death. He and Margaret lost their only son when he was a young adult. He was approached after Margaret’s funeral about joining the ‘Exiteers’

“Felix had thought about it for six whole months, because he was not the kind of man to leap before he’d looked, and then looked again – and then possibly commissioned some sort of risk assessment report.”

That’s him. Methodical and cautious. It turned out that he was good at it. He and another elderly gent made a good, reassuring pair to visit those wishing to exit, but today, his usual partner isn’t there and he’s assisted by a young woman for whom this is her first assignment.

Something goes wrong, she makes a mistake, and what seemed like it was going to be a slow, straight-forward story about an old guy in a new situation changes entirely. It becomes both suspenseful and funny.

Each time we see Felix try to find out for himself what happened, we want to tell him “NO”! We know he means well but he’s out of his depth and he’s going to end up . . . would you believe, stuck up a tree?

There are many other memorable characters. Crooks, cops, and gamblers. Here’s one.

“Shifty Sands had been cursed with just enough intelligence to know he was not quite smart enough. Hence, he was a bitter young man.
. . .
He’d started smoking at twelve, taking a chance that it would kill him by thirty and he might start the next life over with better gifts, more money, and in a warmer place. But he was thirty-six now, and was just starting to worry that – unless he did something uncharacteristically daring – he would soon be a bitter old man.”

Don’t be fooled by Felix’s mundane existence - he does actually notice the irony around him.

“He folded the wrapping into a square and placed it under a stone so it wouldn’t blow away. He’d take it home with him. Recycle it. Two different boxes, of course. Both inconveniently big, both made of plastic. And then a lorry belching diesel fumes would come along and do its bit to save the planet . . .”

It’s an inventive story with some delightful surprises. and one of my favourite endings. Thanks to NetGalley and Grove Atlantic for the preview copy from which I’ve quoted, (so quotes may have changed, of course).

Was this review helpful?

Belinda Bauer’s latest novel is absolutely marvelous in every possible way.
Our main character Felix is seventy five years old, he lives in Devon with his dog Mabel. Apart from his dog he is pretty lonely, because first his beloved son and soon after his wife died due to unbearable terminal illnesses, that’s why he became an exiteer. Felix‘s duty as an exiteer is to support terminally ill clients passively, throughout their suicide by their own hands. No laws are being broken, until Amanda - a newbie exiteer assists him on one occasion. Eventually Felix has to face problems that he never anticipated.

I adored this cozy mystery so much, it is such a remarkable story, quite outstanding actually. I never read anything like this before, even though the plot seems utterly dark with the suffering people and the deaths, it is however heart-warming and uplifting the whole time.

You won’t be able to resist the fabolous writing and the lovely characters. The pull of this story is immense, you will be finished with this book in no time.

Furthermore you won’t be able to stop yourself from a giggle here and a chuckle there..

“There was a paperback book, open and face down, which almost made Felix have palpitations. He always used a bookmark and it pained him to see a book treated so shabbily - even a Clive Cussler.”

Thank you NetGalley / Grove Atlantic for providing me with this free e-arc, I‘m looking forward to read more of Belinda Bauer‘s books.

Was this review helpful?

Felix Pink is a retired widower who volunteers as an Exiteer–someone who stays with terminally ill people as they die by suicide. It is a mission of mercy and compassion, and the volunteers operate on just the edge of UK law. When one of his visits goes horribly wrong, Felix is dodging the police and trying to find out what actually happened.

Don’t let the ominous cover and dark description put you off. They really don’t do this book justice–it is surprisingly delightful. Felix is lovely and well-meaning, and many of the other characters are as well, which makes for many chuckle-worthy interactions. Dark themes and shady characters are a part of it, yes, but this is much more like A Man Called Ove than an edge-of-your-seat thriller.

Was this review helpful?

First published in Great Britain in 2020; published by Atlantic Monthly Press on February 2, 2021

Exit is a clever murder mystery concerning a death that may or may not be a murder. The story becomes progressively darker and more amusing as other lives are placed at risk from murders that may or may not be consummated.

The story revolves around the Exiteers, a group of people, mostly older, who help the sick and dying end their lives. They don’t want to cross the line by committing murder, so they are careful to take no fatal action of their own. Instead, they advise the soon-to-be-departed of a dentist who will sell them nitrous oxide. At the appointed hour, a team of two Exiteers arrives to provide comfort as their client stops breathing air and starts breathing nitrous. The Exiteers take a copy of the person’s Will (to prove, if they ever must, that they did not benefit from the death) and remove the nitrous cannister, making it appear that the client died a natural death.

The Exiteers are managed by Geoffrey Skeet from his wheelchair. Skeet sends Felix Pink and Amanda Bell to help Charles “Skipper” Cann make his way to whatever lies beyond. The enter the house and find a wheezing man in bed. The man grasps for a mask that is connected to the nitrous but drops it. Amanda makes the foolish mistake of handing it to him, perhaps becoming culpable for his death. That turns out to be the least of their worries when they discover that the person who died from inhaling the gas was not Charles at all, but his son Albert, who apparently thought he was reaching for his oxygen mask. Charles' grandson Reggie eventually reveals that he had arranged for the Exiteers to help Charles die, leading Felix (and the reader) to wonder whether the Exiteers were set up to kill the wrong man and, if so, whether Reggie was behind it.

Horse racing and loan sharks play a role in a plot that has nearly every character worried about paying debts, including Detective Constable Calvin Bridge. Calvin plays the horses and worries that a gangster, who placed a large wager on a horse that Calvin bet on, will seek retribution if the horse loses. Calvin has other worries as well, including his fear that his bosses will discover that his family members are all criminals. His biggest fear at the moment is that he won’t solve the mystery of Albert’s death.

Exit is a comedy of errors in which unexpected plot twists assure that nothing is quite as it seems. Belinda Bauer employs the understated humor that the British have long mastered to assure the reader’s constant amusement. The police get everything wrong and the reader will likely follow in their footsteps. The story does involve culprits and a murderous scheme, but the true culprits are skillfully concealed by Bauer’s deft misdirection. As one of the police inspectors says at the end, “I did not see that coming."

A couple of unexpected romances sweeten a plot that is never in danger of souring. Its focus on Charles, a crusty codger who wants to die, is tempered by the kindness of Felix, who is 75 but still sees the value in all lives, including that of Charles. Yet the novel also suggests, with good humor and a dash of wisdom, that choosing your own time and place and way to die might be all that anyone can ask.


Was this review helpful?

I have read six of the nine novels Belinda Bauer has written so far and all were great reads. This one was a perfect read – original, engaging and amusing while still retaining the ‘crime’ aspect that we have come to know and love with Bauer’s writing.

I loved Felix Pink. He was a kind, intelligent and morally minded man who only wanted to do what was ‘right’. No stranger to tragedy, he is lonely, a widower with only his little dog Mabel for company, his forays with the Exiteers were really his only social interactions.

His blossoming friendships throughout the novel were entertaining and heart-warming to read. What happens to Felix, and a few other of the characters reads almost like a comedy of errors at times. I chuckled aloud on several occasions.

Told via the points of view of Felix Pink and the detective Calvin Bridge, I was glued to the novel and cheered these characters on throughout the story. I also loved the various dogs and cats that played a part in the book.

Highly recommended to those readers who enjoy a quirky crime caper with liberal does of levity throughout. With a memorable and touching ending, this was… all in all, a great read.

Was this review helpful?

I have loved Belinda Bauer since her debut, but EXIT feels as if it's on a new level since her debut novel, a novel that surpasses those that have come before it and then some. The book involves people who are involved in helping those terminally or critically ill in their right to die, rather than suffer through pain. However, when one of the usual deaths goes wrong, it suddenly becomes clear this was a sort of conspiracy, and someone else was behind this. I won't spoil more, but trust me when I say it's worth the read.

Was this review helpful?

Thank you Netgalley for this ARC of Exit, by Belinda Bauer.

His name is Felix, but when he's working he goes by John. His volunteer position is a unique one, he's known as an Exiteer, a secret group of people who help people pass on without pain or threat of legal ramifications. Felix, being an elderly man himself, believes in the cause, and works hard to protect it.

But when a new recruit joins him, and they visit their first job, a simple error is made that will turn the Exit movement, it's founder, and Felix in grave danger...

This was not at all what I expected. Such an intricately woven and unique story. It aaaaaalmost had a dystopian feel to it, but very interesting characters and an underbelly that I could never have anticipated. Definitely well worth the read.

Was this review helpful?

I haven't been getting the best books lately so it could be that I'm overrating this. And yet, I'm sure this was a great book, the best of the year so far.

Felix works for a secret group that assists suicides. As a widower himself he prides in how he help those close to death take the final step in life, a help that wasn't available to his wife, but after so many cases, a big mistake occurs. So big, he has no idea how it happened. With the police after him, he has little time to make reparations and prepare for being behind bars. And yet, he's never felt this much alive since his wife's death.

This wasn't my second book by Bauer and I wasn't ready to enjoy this even more than Snap, my first. I did remember how well she wrote the psychological and emotional part of the story, but this was at another level!

My favorite thing about this one was the hidden humor, the ironies, especially with how cynical the narration could be. To be honest, there were times I wanted to laugh before I even noticed it had really been a joke. It's surely a heavy topic—suicide, murder—, so the tone made this book even more worth it. Aside from that and the wonderful characters, I have to note how perfectly all the random things we're introduced to just fit as we go on.

I don't think this is an extraordinary story though. Of course there were a few plot twists, but nothing that blew my mind. On the other hand, it wasn't predictable at all, not until I was close enough to the big reveal. I was at 90% of the read and still wasn't sure of what to expect of the solution, that's the truth. Again, nothing big happened, but it was gripping all the same.

Highly recommended for fans of thrillers and crime stories.

Honest review based on an ARC provided by Netgalley. Many thanks to the publisher for this opportunity.

Was this review helpful?