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The Postmortal: A Novel [Kindle Edition]

Drew Magary
4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (122 customer reviews)

Print List Price: $16.00
Kindle Price: $10.99
You Save: $5.01 (31%)
Sold by: Penguin Group (USA) LLC

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Book Description

John Farrell is about to get "The Cure."
Old age can never kill him now.
The only problem is, everything else still can . . .

Imagine a near future where a cure for aging is discovered and-after much political and moral debate-made available to people worldwide. Immortality, however, comes with its own unique problems-including evil green people, government euthanasia programs, a disturbing new religious cult, and other horrors. Witty, eerie, and full of humanity, The Postmortal is an unforgettable thriller that envisions a pre-apocalyptic world so real that it is completely terrifying.

Editorial Reviews


"A must-read for fans of postmodern dystopia in the vein of Margaret Atwood, Chuck Palahniuk, and Neil Gaiman" ---Library Journal

About the Author

Drew Magary is a writer for Deadspin, NBC, and Maxim. His first book, Men with Balls, was released in 2008. The Postmortal is his first novel.

Johnny Heller has won two prestigious Audie Awards, earned numerous Audie nominations, and was named one of the Top 50 Narrators of the Twentieth Century by AudioFile magazine.

Product Details

  • File Size: 562 KB
  • Print Length: 384 pages
  • Publisher: Penguin Books; 1 edition (August 30, 2011)
  • Sold by: Penguin Group (USA) LLC
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B0052RHFM2
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #137,526 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
44 of 50 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Dystopian humor August 30, 2011
In 2019, the "cure for aging" -- gene therapy -- is legal in only four countries, but immortality can be purchased on the black market. The issue is divisive: gene therapy's opponents use terrorist tactics to attack the black market while protests in favor of legalizing the cure turn ugly. The desire to cheat death ultimately triumphs.

John Farrell takes the cure without devoting much thought to its downside: If you stop aging, retirement isn't an option and you can forget about social security. If your parents don't die, you don't inherit. If you live forever, you never experience eternal respite from annoying relatives and politicians, it's less easy to ignore future threats like global warming, and the escape clause from your marital vows -- until death do us part -- becomes a nullity. Couples often say they marry so they can grow old together. Would they bother with marriage if eternal youth made possible an eternal choice of partners? On a more serious note, the pressures of overpopulation would dramatically increase the already unsustainable consumption of finite resources, a predicament that would initially lead to hoarding, then to war, and ultimately to a barren planet.

Beginning in 2019, Farrell blogs about the impact gene therapy has on his life and the world. The introduction to The Postmortal advises us that Farrell's text files are discovered in 2090. Through Farrell's eyes, we watch the escalating disaster: the rise of pro-death pressure, the burgeoning prison populations resulting from life sentences that last forever, the harsh measures China imposes to assure that its citizens forego the cure, the glorification of suicide, the fracturing of society.
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11 of 15 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Okay read, but fails to realize its potential July 1, 2012
It's an okay read, but only sporadically clever. The idea for the story is a good one, and got me intrigued enough to buy the book. The first third or so of the book is probably the best because it deals with postmortalism becoming a new reality. Unfortunately, the story starts skipping long periods of the main character's life after that, and too often glosses over just why indefinite lifespans create the conditions that they do, and how people got together to bring about the dystopian future described. For me, this book lacked an engaging flow with the time gaps and the blog/news story chapters. The main character becomes increasingly unlikable throughout the book. You can decide for yourself whether that matters. Magary is also very very fond of similes. Many are strange and somewhat inspired, but too often the abundance of similes served to make the reading tedious and repetitive feeling. It's a thought provoking book, but in the end it fails to capitalize on its own potential.
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13 of 18 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Surprisingly vapid and boring October 13, 2011
This book came to me with high recommendations, and was a moderate, if not major, disappointment. The idea is great- a cure for aging that will render humans immortal. There is a lot of potential in this topic for a book with amazing characters and deep philosophical exploration. This book offers neither. Instead, we get a somewhat hastily-thrown-together dystopian planet which is poorly developed, and we follow the story line of a vapid main character, who experiences many tragedies and adventures. They don't make much of an impression on him, and they don't make much of an impression on the reader either. None of the events or characters do, in fact. There are a few smart moments- such as a glimpse into what emergency rooms might look like twenty (or five) years from now, but with a concept this radical there could have been much more. This book might amaze you if you've never read Philip K. Dick books or any decent science fiction. But if you have, I think you're in for a letdown.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
This is a disturbing, depressing, compelling, captivating read. I have no experience with Magary's other writings. Perhaps that is why I found no humor in the book as other's have said they found. As I read this book, I kept thinking of Lord of the Flies.

The book begins with an account of the discovery of 60 years of John Farell's "text files" containing an account of his life and the world within which he lived. We are told that these materials are being presented as "incontrovertible evidence that the cure for aging must never again be legalized".

Farell describes his decision to seek the "cure" as an obsession: "I instantly wanted it more than I had ever wanted anything....It was a want. A hunger. A naked compulsion that was bullet proof to logic and reason."

The doctor who gives Farell the cure, describes the people who come to him as vane and obsessive:

"When people come through my door, the first and only thing they think about is, `Oh boy, I'm gonna live forever.' But they don't stop to consider what that means. They want to live forever, but they don't think about what they're going to have to live with. What they'll have to carry with them. And whether or not that's something they really, truly want."

The doctor also tells Farell he can never "die a natural, peaceful death". To which Farell responds.

"I don't think most people die natural, peaceful deaths," I said. "All the loved ones I've seen die have been sick, frail, and helpless. Undergoing chemo. Lying in hospitals. Soiling their beds. Two of my grandparents died alone, with no one to talk to. I don't think natural death offers much in the way of gentle relief. I think it's a slow, wrenching thing I'd like to try to get far, far away from.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
1.0 out of 5 stars Felt like I was living forever when I read this book
Book read like the author sat down and made it up as he went along. Repeated themes, flat characters and a hackneyed plot. I agree, a missed opportunity for a better writer. Read more
Published 6 days ago by Robert Merivel
4.0 out of 5 stars Nice job. Recommended for those with a taste for ...
Well written in a pulp style. Dark, sardonic and imaginative tale. Nice job. Recommended for those with a taste for dark tales.
Published 1 month ago by Ken McA
5.0 out of 5 stars GOOD!!!
the book was in great shape, just that the one I got didn't match the cover shown where you buy it but it was the correct book.
Published 1 month ago by Christopher Linares
4.0 out of 5 stars Dark, tragic dystopian future.
Pretty good for a first novel. Postmortal is an endgame of over-population and world collapse via the elimination of aging. Read more
Published 3 months ago by Jalon Q. Zimmerman
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Very original story line with the absurdist humor like Kurt Vonnegut
Published 3 months ago by scarlet pimple
5.0 out of 5 stars A surprising, well-told story.
The Postmortal is an unexpected entry in the vast ranks of recent dystopian future literature. A specific scenario, told by one consistent voice without trying to be too clever or... Read more
Published 6 months ago by Shoshona19
3.0 out of 5 stars A curious sci-fi drama
What would happen if a cure for aging was discovered? People would be able to take it, and stay with the same biological age forever (or until an accident, or someone killed them). Read more
Published 7 months ago by Alejandro Contreras
4.0 out of 5 stars A solid, but unexpected read
Any regular reader of Drew Magary (Deadspin, GQ) would not associate this fiction with his normal prose. Read more
Published 7 months ago by PN
4.0 out of 5 stars Great start but limps to the stable.
I was totally hooked within a few pages. The style of storytelling is brisk and unique. Unfortunately as the story progresses the pace slows considerably. Read more
Published 7 months ago by Jason Kirby
3.0 out of 5 stars Liked the idea.
I really enjoyed the beginning of the book and its potential, but the love stories in it seemed random and inorganic which bothered me.
Published 7 months ago by Katie Candilora
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