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The End As I Know It: A Novel of Millennial Anxiety Hardcover – December 26, 2006
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From Publishers Weekly
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“The End as I Know It is a smart, funny, disturbing and, yes, charming novel that had me waxing nostalgic for the not-so-long-ago days when a simple digital anomaly was the only thing vying for attention in the pantheon of Things That Scare the Living Crap Out of Me.”
—James P. Othmer, author of The Futurist
“Kevin Shay brilliantly mines tension from the gap between the fears of 1999 and the reality of Y2K, and he does it with incredible humor and heart. The End as I Know It is a funny, profound, effortless book.”
—Kevin Guilfoile, author of Cast of Shadows
"After reading just a few pages of The End As I Know It, I knew that I did not want it to end. Kevin Shay is a wonderfully funny novelist, a creator of deft (sometimes daft) comic moments, and his story is completely irresistible."
—Sean Wilsey, bestselling author, Oh the Glory of It All
"Kevin Shay has come up with a funny, twisted, razor-sharp lens with which to view the very distant recent past. The End as I Know It will leave you laughing, and refusing to cry. A deeply rewarding journey for anyone who may have felt like the only American without the requisite bright future in America, circa 1999 — the only ones certain we weren't worth a million on paper. The party in America has been over for seemingly as long as one can remember, but then Kevin Shay turns up like your only friend who took the right kind of pictures. And somehow you feel better."
—Dan Kennedy, Author of Loser Goes First
Top Customer Reviews
The secret to ths book's success is in Mr. Shay's timeless characters and situations. Replace the year 2000 with Avian Flu, Global Warming, the threat of the Cold War, the Atom Bomb, or any End of the World scenario that has plagued us for generations - the threat is irrelevant. All that matters is Randall, our narrator, and his Gen-X, Gen-Y, Gen-whatever struggle to make something of his life. He battles clueless relatives and annoyed friends in his pursuit to "save" them from catastrophe. Yet he skewers other conspiracists who, to him, take their beliefs too far. In other words, to bastardize Groucho Marx, he doesn't want to belong to the only club that will actually have him as a member.
So we root for Randall as he watches the ticking clock and wrestles with his fears. That he also plays absurd children's songs at elementary schools with the help of some double-entendre named puppets adds to our pathos, and the novel's ample humour.
Mr. Shay gives us a narrator we can't trust, probably wouldn't befriend, and at times want to strangle for chucking away what's good in his life. But then, we all have Y2Ks to worry about, while others stare in wonder at our insistent ignorance to ignore the simple truths they all can see.
Hitchcock would have been proud at the trick here - that the supposed purpose for the book, the time bomb, is not nearly as important as the mirror the author holds up for us to observe. Warts and all, we have a blast doing it.
Shay is witty and creative and even manages to create some tension along the way.
This book is an easy read and very easy to enjoy.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I enjoyed this book, both for the period details of the Y2K era, as well as for the humor and touching details of the plot. Overall, it was a fun read!Published on January 5, 2014 by Acctprof
The writing was such that it seemed to come from someone who was illiterate. I somewhat got an idea of the plot but it was rather confusing. Read morePublished on June 5, 2013 by David H Kraft