Douglas Coupland writes insane books. If you are not ready or able to accept a completely unbelievable plot with over the top characters, then get out while you can. That said, I liked this book a lot and read it in one sitting. I kept expecting there to be a bit of joy somewhere in the book, but this entire book is one gigantic pit of sadness.
I give it a 4/5, for style and because his writing draws you in. This book is narrated by 4 different characters, ranging from extremely hopeful to dwelling in the darkest pits of despair. The first character, Cheryl really surprised me, because she had such hope and was so loving. This was a surprise knowing what I do of Coupland’s previous work.
As I’m never going to be old, I’m glad that I never lost my sense of wonder about the world, although I have a hunch it would have happened pretty soon. I loved the world, its beauty and bigness as well as its smallness.
Douglas Coupland, Hey Nostradamus!
Each has one outstanding characteristic that is just so present, it basically defines them.
Cheryl is naive but has a hopeful look at the world. Which makes the rest of the book so depressing. (It’s really hard to review this book without any spoilers.)
Jason is angry. He gets himself into trouble because of his anger. But overall is a good person, even if he won’t let anyone else see that side of him.
Heather never gives up. She is also a bit gullible, but likeable.
Reg is just an ass.
This book is unbelievably sad. Although there are little pin pricks of light scattered throughout the book, which is part of what kept me going. Cheryl and Reg are the two most tragic characters, but they also have some of the most hopeful dialog.
At the end, it is hard to say exactly why I liked this book so much. Coupland does write good blackout scenes. He makes people in completely ridiculous circumstances seem relatable. When crazy things happen, you don’t really second guess them until after the book. I guess the real reason to read this book, is that it can make you believe in some really unbelievable things. And leave you with the smallest feeling of hope. Which is sometimes all that matters.