Cover Image: At the End of Everything

At the End of Everything

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I was a bit worried to read a book about a plague regarding the current pandemic but it’s spooky season so I gave it a try. The symptoms are a bit similar to covid-19 but in my head it was more like the walking dead even though people didn’t turn into zombies.

I really enjoyed the structure of the narrative with multiple points of view, phone conversations and articles.

In this book, the main characters are teens who have been put in a juvenile treatment center. They can be violent but you learn to care for them as they have been abandoned by the system not once but several times. It’s interesting to see how they’ve been treated and how they react and try to organise the center.

It’s inclusive but it can be triggering for some readers.

TW: abuse, transphobia, ableism… (the list is a bit longer and at the beginning of the book)

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At The End of Everything by Marieke Nijkamp is a hard book to talk about. It took me quite a bit to get into it, probably because I tend to struggle with prison settings – I didn’t look up what the book was about before I started reading as I loved their last book, Even If We Break, and knew I would want to follow what they wrote. That the book deals with a virus breakout doesn’t help either, it hits very close to home as the characters struggle to survive after they’ve been forgotten by the world around them. But damn, once you get into the book, it grips you. The way Nijkamp manages to build tension through the rapid switch of PoVs, the addition of lists, transcripts of phone calls and left messages and similar scenes is brilliant, and as the story goes on, you end up not as close to any single character as you’d be in a traditionally told story, but caught up in the fraught atmosphere of the world. It is an excellent book, and one with great disability rep – there is a deaf character and an autistic character, both of which are really well written. Generally, Nijkamp’s a great bet if you’re looking for queer and diverse YA, and this one in particular is one for you if you like to tear your heart out and stomp on it. Be prepared for all the pain.

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This book was... okay. Thank you to netgalley and the publisher for my copy of this book. I appreciate it very much.

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This book hits really close to home by centering around a government shut down due to a respiratory disease that reads as being so much worse than Covid. Taking place in Hope Juvenile Center which is situated in the middle of the Ozark mountains cut off from civilization. Once the virus hits, the teens find themselves abandoned after the guards up and leave.

It did not bother me to read a book such as this so close to the happening around us here. I was lucky, Covid never hit my family, of the four or five different houses in my family, we buckled down and stayed home and none of us caught the virus. I imagine however that this book could be a major triggering point to some people because of the realism of the story. It is funny, if I had read this book before 2020, I might not have thought it so realistic, never have we experienced something like this in our lifetime, so I figured it would almost feel a bit dystopian to me.

The story is a very character-driven slow burn. The events that happen are slowly fed to the reader, paced throughout, but as you read, the dread and tension will be felt on the pages.

The characters in the book do a great job of taking hold of the situation and have strong wills and resilience. The writer has chosen very diverse characters for the story, for instance, a deaf girl, and another trying to find a God that will be accepting of their queerness. They are all written fantastically with different personalities and abilities but it is great watching them grow and learn to work together. I would have liked a bit more backstory on the characters however, I felt this would have given them each a bit more depth, and a chance for me to know them better.

The one thing I really enjoyed about At The End Everything was the author’s inclusion of things that drove the story forward but were not actually written as the story. Included were phone transcripts and a few other things that seemed to give the story a realness to it.

I do not read a lot of YA books, but this one surprised me and drew me in. It was heartbreaking, and despite that these teens were left to survive alone with sickness and other harsh obstacles surrounding them, this book is also full of hope, love, and survival.

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The teens at Hope Juvenile Treatment Center all have one thing in common, they've broken the rules and ended up residing at a "treatment center" that isn't really treating them or cultivating hope; In fact the only thing the treatment center does for these kids is force a routine and strict rules on the young adults. Every day is exactly like the previous day....until it isn't.. Suddenly the guards don't show up at all. A deadly plague tears through their ranks and they must act quickly as supplies dwindle and panic spreads.

At the End of Everything is full of suspense as we follow the teens left alone in a world that didn't want them to begin with. Tackling many social questions with expertly written prose this post-apocalyptic novel is scarily relevant.. With brilliant metaphors hiding between the lines, At the End of Everything is sure to keep readers intrigued, and on the edge of their seat.

A big thank you to Netgalley and publishers for providing an e-copy so I can share my honest opinion with all of you..

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Hope Juvenile Treatment Center is a home for delinquent teens. When the guards start acting strangely, and quit showing up altogether a number of the kids break out of the facility in attempts to run away. They encounter a blockade of military personnel forcing them back to Hope. They are told of a plague ripping through the nation, and everyone outside Hope is in lockdown. As the delinquents are faced with minimal supplies, and illness spreading through the facility they realize they must band together and leave their misdeeds behind in order to survive. All while wondering if anyone has remembered they are there.

I loved the relationship these kids eventually develop with each other. They each find their niche, and so what they have to to try and survive. The author said in the author note that she wrote this book while recovering from illness, and it makes total sense where her inspiration for “the plague” came from. It was thought provoking to see the perspective of children that “no one remembers” during times of pandemonium, and although I’m sure similar things have and are happening we need to make sure we are doing better for those that need help.

Thank you so much @netgalley and @sourcebooksfire for the advance copy of the e-book in exchange for an honest review. This one is set to be published Jan 4, 2022 so be sure to watch for it!

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I loved this book! It kept me on my toes and dying to know what happens next. The situation may have once been unimaginable but now we all can see how something like this could happen. The only question is who will we be or become when it really matters.

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This book was pretty good. At the End Of Everything is a novel about a juvenile detention center that gets left behind when a global plague begins. The novel covered a couple of the kids perspectives, which helped to get a sense of how things were going for each of them. I liked all the characters, but somehow; by the end of the novel, it didn’t feel like it really came to a close. However, there was a good group of diverse characters, so it was a true reflection of a juvenile center. Author did a great job.

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Teenagers are left at a treatment center while a plague runs throughout the world.

They must come together and find food and help eachother when they get sick.
I felt like there wasn't really a plot. Nobody ever comes for them and nothing really happens.

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The teens at Hope Juvenile Treatment Center aren't really receiving much "treatment" and they certainly don't have much "hope." Admitted for various reasons, the teens follow the rules of the center and don't really form relationships with each other. When the guards don't show up for work one day, the teens venture outside, only to discover a respiratory plague has hit the area. Can the teens learn to work together and survive? Or will the plague and infighting take them out?

At the End of Everything is a survival dystopia set in the very near future. A little eerie to be reading about a respiratory plague, and there are definitely elements that mirror the societal effects of Covid-19. A nice standalone title that incorporates many characters that are failed by the justice system. Includes some language, but otherwise, a pretty PG title.

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This was a good read but nothing really stood out or kept me on the edge of my seat. We follow a group of kids left to die in a facility when an deadly outbreak hits. Some leave to find a better way to survive. As the story goes on we see bits and pieces of the kids' background in the form of phone calls. The kids that we follow do tend to grow into their new roles as providers and survivors quite well but the odds are stacked against most of them.

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This was a hard book to read, with the pandemic not over it just felt too close to what we are dealing with, as a book overall it worked but i wished there were fewer character/pov to get more emotionally involved with them. I would read other books by this author and I appreciate the attempt to deal with the subject

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This book started out strong! I love a good YA dystopia book, particularly pandemic-related. The tension and world-building in the opening chapters was great. However, I found the multiple POVs difficult to keep up with and lost interest about halfway through. Perhaps it was characters I can't relate to or there wasn't enough suspense/underlying fear for my taste.

Thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for the opportunity to read this book.

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This book felt super eerie and uncomfortable with the current pandemic but the author managed to hit the nail on the head. I really like the cast of characters but I wasn’t rooting for anyone or convinced by the voice/actions of the individuals. It’s an interesting story of survival but a bit jumbled. 2.75/5

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“At The End Of Everything” will keep you on the edge of your seat the first the whole story. It’s creepy, timely, and hits very close to home. This is the kind of book that you will stay up all night to finish, the kind of book that gives you goosebumps.

Set in a juvenile rehabilitation facility known as “Hope For Bright Futures”, the story follows a group of teens cast out by society for various reasons. Told through three main narrators, they tell of their fight for survival. They are all alone and left to figure out how to make it through. They are cut off from society, and can only get very rare contact from anyone on the outside. Some come together despite their differences, and some decide to flee. Each teen steps into a role no one asked for. It’s a harrowing account of our worst fears when society collapses.

The characters are outstanding, especially my favorite, Emerson. I don’t want to spoil anything, but their story is the most heartbreaking. They do realize their strength and get not only a sense of being accepted, but gain their power back. I really appreciate that the author was so inclusive and how she built her characters. They were relatable, and their stories will stick with me a long time.

I would like to thank Marieke Nijkamp, Sourcebooks Fire, and Netgalley for the opportunity to read and review this ARC in exchange for my honest review.

Publication date: 01/04/2022

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This was a different style of book for me, and not what I was expecting.

In these difficult times, a story like this is a real link for YA readers.

Although it was a slow starter, the story did build. Sadly the number of characters made getting the story straight hard going. Due to the circumstances of Hope, none of the characters were particularly likeable apart from Casey, maybe because we didn’t know his background!

The ending was a hard read, but totally relevant. I would recommend to younger readers, a real conversation starter.

Thank you NetGalley.

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Not what I was expecting.
I went into At the End of Everything thinking it was going to be much darker and macabre. The story revolves around a group of teens that society has labeled troubled and sent to Hope Juvenile Treatment Center. The reader can only assume the teens weren't treated fairly before the pandemic started, as we don't get a lot of backstory before. We pick up with the guards abandoning the teens to save themselves from the plague, and leaving the teens to fend for themselves.
This was more a novel about survival and resilience, and how society treats those deemed disposable. While the plot was a bit flat, and not a lot of action in the story minus the stand off with soldiers at the beginning, overall I liked the book. I enjoyed the characters, they were emotionally drawn, with their flaws and all. At times while reading I felt like I took to google and looked up covid-19, and it may have been a bit too soon for me to read a book about an infectious disease pandemic book. The writing style was lovely and the book gives you hope even if things look to be hopeless. If you're ready to read about a pandemic, and like post apocalyptical style of novels I recommend At the End of Everything.

Thank you to netgalley and the publisher, Sourcebooks fire for an advanced reading copy in exchange for an honest review.

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Thank you NetGalley for an e-ARC of At the End of Everything by Marieke Nijkamp.
At the End of Everything is a timely novel that explores the effects of a pandemic on juveniles in a detention center. Told from several points of view, the reader is able to see how different people deal with extreme circumstances, and what it takes to survive. An unlikely group of friends that need to work together will help teens recognize empathy. This is a book that teens will be able to relate to due to circumstances of COVID.

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This is such a heartwrenching story with an incredible cast of characters. All three POVs are so interesting to read. I love the autism rep and the nonbinary rep. While this is not a Covid-19 story, it is *based on* the current pandemic, and the plague in this story had some similarities to our real life situation right now. I think this story is very important and shines a light on how people in prisons and other similar institutions are being forgotten and left behind during the pandemic. The main characters are Logan, Grace and Emerson. Logan is autistic and nonverbal, and she has her own secret sign language to communicate with her twin sister, and I really love their bond. Grace is the one who takes care of everyone, she's such a strong and important character, and this book wouldn't be the same without her. Emerson is nonbinary and religious and they just seem to care so much about their friends, I love them. Special mention goes to Casey for being such a wonderful caregiver and doing his best to keep people alive. I have big love for him. This is not an easy story to read; it's sad, it's infuriating, and at times it made me cry - but there is a message of hope weaved into the pages. There is love, there is kindness, and there is friendship. There is a community, working together to survive. Fighting to stay alive. And that's important.

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This is a great suspense novel for a YA audience. It does eerily mirror the pandemic, so some people might not be quite ready for this topic yet. I appreciate the diversity of characters.

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