Cover Image: At the End of Everything

At the End of Everything

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Member Reviews

Thank you to NetGalley for providing an eARC of this book in exchange for an honest review. 

I'm a big fan of some of Marieke Nijkamp's other writing. She always has a sharp, readable style and gives wonderful character details that create a vivid world in my mind as I read. 

These attributes were noticeable in this book as well. The story started off so strong and the descriptions and style made me feel like I was right there in the action. However, in my opinion, the story dragged throughout the middle and the end. While the writing was still quite good, I simply found myself losing interest in the plot. 

All that being said, I would definitely still read her next book! But this one didn't quite do it for me.
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I have absolutely loved every one of Marieke Nijkamp’s books. This one hit very close to home for obvious reasons and was hard to read at times. It was interesting to see a similar pandemic through the eyes of characters.
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Juvenile offenders and society misfits have been sent to The Hope Juvenile Treatment Center to serve their time.  This is a rough place for all and the care is minimum. Existence survives on routine. 
Suddenly the guards are leaving, no explanation and no instructions for the youth left behind.  Venturing outside the walls of the center in an effort to get back to their families they are met with violence. The youth are ordered to go back to the center as there is a pandemic in town and the town people are sick and dying.
The story now becomes a journey of survival. 

I could not help but hope for each of these characters. 

I enjoyed the novel as I have enjoyed all others from this author.  This was filled with pandemic concerns, worry and panic and still the core survival instinct remained strong.  

The book is written from the voice of alternating characters. The author has once again perfectly crafted a story that includes all.

I was gripped from the first page and really appreciated the trigger warning being placed at the front of the book.  This allows the reader to choose to read the book without being surprised by the content, 

Thank you NetGalley and Sourcebooks for the electronic ARC in exchange for my honest review.
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Thank you NetGalley for this eARC in exchange for my honest review.

The Hope Juvenile Treatment Center is "home" for misunderstood teenage delinquents. When all of the supervisors and guards disappear one day, the teens are suspicious. A few leave the center to try to find out what happened and discover that there's been a world wide pandemic. People are getting sick and dying. Everyone is on lockdown and quarantined. After a violent confrontation with the military, half the teens led by Hunter, the center's top bad boy, leave the center and the other half stay with Grace, who has anger issues but is strong enough to take charge for those who stay. The teens at Hope build a community and take care of one another in such a hard and confusing time. There are a lot of character development and I love that this book is written in multiple POV's. I think the pandemic story line definitely hits close to our new way of life. At the End of Everything is an addictive and sad book. Nijkamp provoked a mixture of unsettling feelings as I read and I loved it.
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The Quick Synopsis: The guards and staff abandon a juvenile detention center as a pandemic strikes. The teens are left to survive as best they can.

These are great characters. [I have read some negative comments in other reviews about the author "touching all the bases" with non-binary, special needs, etc, but I think the writers of those comments may not really understand the demographics found in juvenile detention centers.] Each of the characters is clearly flawed, often in multiple ways, but they are also clearly human in the most positive sense of the word.

I think it would make a really great YA read, but the "Content Warning" at the beginning of the book should not be ignored.
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Good but not great.  This is a story about a pandemic that escalates quickly and a group of teens at a juvenile detention center are left to fend for themselves.   The POV is a few of the main characters and their daily challenges.

This was hard to read bc it reminded me of the uncertainty and fear of 2020.  With the Delta variant on the rise and restrictions at work becoming tighter, this was uncomfortable to read at times.  

The characters could have used more depth and development with each other.  It all is felt a bit shallow.
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An infectious disease ravages the world and a group of abandoned teenagers are left to fend for themselves. They have no choice but to grow up, and fast. What will they do to protect their place of Hope? Anything they need to in order to survive.
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At the End of Everything

Full feature for this title will be posted at: @queensuprememortician on Instagram!
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When the plague strikes, the youth in the Hope detention center are abandoned. 

This book is the story of what happens next. Can these discarded teens survive?  What do they find out about themselves? 

A grim but interesting read, possibly inspired by the current pandemic.
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Actual rating 3.5/5 stars.

<i>"This is what the plague looks like.
It’s not illness, at first. It’s fear. The type of fear that nags at the back of your thoughts, that crawls like a parasite under your skin. It’s like every bruise that brushes against my clothes."</i>

The guards have gone and the lights are out. The teens at The Hope Juvenile Treatment Center find themselves abandoned. When a few of them travel to find help or answers they encounter armed soldiers and are informed that a deadly plague has swept through the world, taking many lives with it. Those supposed to protect and care for these teens have fled and now their only chance for survival lies in trusting in and working with the few of them who are left.

Reading about a plague during a pandemic was an odd experience. I would definitely say it heightened my emotional attachment to the storyline. The events that actually transpired in 2020 did not escalate as quickly nor get quite as bad as those depicted here, but this delivered a scary insight to how sinister everything could have easily turned. If I had read this a few years ago it may have felt like a distant dystopian story but reading it in 2021 made it feel like a very possible reality we were lucky to escape from.

For all the terror this novel conjured, it was also a remarkably quiet story. Events were slowly-paced and all were full of sorrow. It provided a very humane approach to the plague and kept the focus rooted on the individuals attempting to survive it.

The teens who centred the story were wonderfully resilient individuals. The world deemed them  expendable and yet they fought for their survival every single day, never giving up or complaining about the unfairness of their situation. The diverse cast of characters were all so lovable, selfless, and hard-working. I could have spent an entire novel's worth of pages with each one of them and am glad to have been provided with this insight to their stories, both personally and relating to the plague.

This captivated me throughout and yet I wished for a little something more, at the conclusion. Sorrow dogged these pages and the tone was not alleviated at the book's close. I felt desperately sad once it was over and though I understand that this was probably Nijkamp's desire, I could have used a few more moments of lightness and hope to be peppered throughout this.
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Okay, so I’ve read a few of Marieke books before and I have always really enjoyed them which is why I was so excited to receive an ARC for this book. However, I felt disappointed with this book and I can’t quite put my finger on exactly what I didn’t like, but perhaps this review will help make my mind clearer.

The cover is stunning - dark and mysterious and instantly drew me in. I loved the idea of the premise. Delinquent teens locked up and a sudden, bizarre disease has plagued the outside world? This honestly sounds like such an exciting plot but the execution just wasn’t it for me.

I have an issue with books that have multiple POV’s. Some authors can do it really well and you feel connected to the characters, but others (such as this one), fail to make you care about any of them when it feels like you still don’t know them. We have several POVs we flick between in this book and whilst I could understand this, it just didn’t work. I think having any more than two POVs is too many, especially when things just felt repeated in every chapter.
I also wasn’t keen on the pace of the plot. I found myself skimming some chapters and felt like I missed nothing significant. The book was slow starting and when things picked up, it was over and done with quick. 
I also felt like I kept waiting for more. More twists, more of a thriller (ish) plot as that’s the vibe I got from this book. 

This was the kind of book that had a lot of potential but just fell flat for me. I think it would also appeal to much younger YA readers.

<i>I received this book via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.</I>
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Thanks to Netgalley for this ARC! Overall, this story about a group of teenagers who are forgotten as a plague takes over the outside world is captivating. I was drawn in quickly and couldn’t put the book down as I read deeper into the story. I liked the diverse points of view and how the author shifted into their voices when a new chapter began. I felt like there could have been more depth there - it came across as barely scratching the surface. I didn’t feel very invested in the characters - I just wanted to know how it ended. I do not want to go into specifics and spoil the story - definitely give this a read to hear about what happens to those who were forgotten by those who were supposed to love and protect them.
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I wasn't prepared for just how timely this book is; an outbreak, people who don't care or believe in its existence, people who work to keep everyone else safe at their own expense...It was difficult to read but only because I feel like we're living this book's setting in real life.

The characters were diverse and unique, and I love the representation of different communities. Particularly with Emerson being non-binary and Logan speaking ASL; it definitely brought to light the difficulties that marginalized and underrepresented communities have to deal with in the best of times, let alone during a national crisis.

And it got me thinking - in all of Covid, did I once think about more than my little bubble and consider what was going on in, say, rehabilitation centers, detention centers, etc.? Ouch.
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I really enjoyed This Is Where It Ends and Even If We Break, so when I saw At the End of Everything available for request, I was thrilled to be approved. 

When the guards at Hope Juvenile Treatment Center--a remote detention center in the Ozarks--start acting strangely, none of the teens at the center could have predicted what it meant. An off day? Ornery attitudes?

A plague. And soon, the teens at Hope find themselves abandoned as a deadly virus rages outside. As  tensions and fear rise, they must figure out who to trust and how to survive. 

I liked this book.

Nijkamp did an excellent job creating and maintaining narrative voices. Multiple POVs can be tricky, but I didn't have a difficult time distinguishing characters or their motivations. I found their back stories to be layered and authentic, and overall, the chapters flowed well together. I wished there had been slightly more push past some of the more plague-plot stereotypes, but this still holds up well as a character study amidst harrowing circumstances. 

At the End of Everything is a quick read with solid characters and an of-the-moment plot that is bound to get people talking. 

Big thanks to Sourcebooks for providing an eARC in exchange for honest review consideration.
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Thank you Netgalley for the digital advanced readers copy of At The End of Everything by Marieke Nijkamp in exchange for my honest review. 

This story takes place at the fictional Hope Juvenile Treatment Center which houses a group of delinquent teenagers who all have been sent there for various reasons (arson, theft, etc.). It's not a very hopeful place especially when the teens are mistreated by the guards and are forced to abide by strict rules and zero compassion. But then the guards as well as the doctors start acting strange. Pretty soon, the teens find themselves all alone with no supervision. A small group of teens wander out of the treatment center to try to find answers when a violent exchange takes place between them and a group of soldiers. The teens find out that a deadly plague is taking over the country and everyone is forced to quarantine. What happens next will have you on the edge of your seat! 

I didn't think I'd enjoy this book, being that reading is my escape and the last thing I really want to read about is being in quarantine. But I was fully engrossed and had to know what was going to happen. This book is told in several of the teen's perspectives. I liked that the reader gets to know the thoughts, feelings, and actions of different characters. I may have gotten a bit emotional at one point. The author, Marieke Nijkamp, has spun a gripping fictional tale with a touch of reality and what our world is dealing with.
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This dystopian novel takes the current pandemic to a new level as a group of children or teens - the book isn't too  specific about ages - who are in a juvenile correctional facility must fend for themselves when their guards abandon them as the plague takes hold.  I believe this book would have held together better if I had read the previous stories. It can be read as a stand-alone but I felt I was missing some important information.  Nevertheless, the characters were appealing and though I felt the book was short on details, I cared about them and their struggles to survive in a hostile world.
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At The End Of Everything by this new to me author, published by Sourcebooks, is a n absolutely gripping ya-ish thriller that had me in knots.
The storyline is set in  a juvenile treatment center called Hope - ironic because hope is the last what is to expected at this place. The teens there, forgotten by society coping with their circumstances, heartbreaking, tearyeyed. Simply unputdownable, this book deals with sensitive subjects. This is an highly en´motional read, consider you warned.
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Thank you NetGalley for the ARC and giving me the opportunity to read this.
This story is set in a juvenile “rehabilitation” center, though reads more like a prison. Positioned in the Ozarks, the children are sent there for almost every reason - possible shoplifting, being transgender, all the way to supposed murder. No one there seems to care about them and definitely no one in the local town wants them there. Enter a plague and this is where the store falls flat… when I mentioned a plague in this setting, a reader can imagine almost everything that occurs in the story. We’ll, in this case, everything imagined is basically what happens. The characters are mostly stereotypes and act accordingly. The illness spreads predictably, as does the fallout it causes. I wanted to like this book, but it was almost boring and left no where for the reader to be surprised.
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Nijkamp has came back to us with another amazing book, that tells an important story as well. The writing proves to be flawless using the right words and placement. Cannot wait to read more of her work!
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Thanks to Netgalley and the publisher for early access. I really liked the story and character development, along with the writing overall. But I think the topic of dealing with a plague/pandemic might be a little too soon for what's currently going on- made it only a 4 star for me.
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