Wednesday, July 18, 2007

"Then We Came to the End" by Joshua Ferris

Another book that arrived after a long wait at the library, this one was a quick read. Part of the fun of it was that it was written in first person plural, so "We did this, we did that..." It's about an ad agency that is slowly failing in Chicago after the turn of the millennium, with the last chapter happening five years later, where everybody has a sort of reunion. There were moments that were laugh-out-loud funny, to me maybe because I work in an office where people do creative work, but nothing is as creative as the work we do filling out our time sheets.

There's a woman who's in charge of all the characters, and she may or may not have cancer. The "We" all spend a huge amount of time gossiping, really getting nothing done. The worst portion of the book for me was the only chapter that was written in third-person, the chapter about Lynn Mason, she who might have cancer, at home. We needed to know what the truth was of all the gossip, but I wonder if the writer would be all that good at writing a 'conventional' novel written in the third-person, or if the whole "we" schtick was all he had.

However, I did enjoy the read.

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