'How we hated our coffee mugs! And our mouse pads, our desk clocks, our daily calendars, all the contents of our desk drawers. Even the photos of our loved ones taped to our computer monitors for uplift and support turned to cloying reminders of time served ...' Welcome to the world of Joshua Ferris' dazzlingly acute, brilliantly original, ...
'How we hated our coffee mugs! And our mouse pads, our desk clocks, our daily calendars, all the contents of our desk drawers. Even the photos of our loved ones taped to our computer monitors for uplift and support turned to cloying reminders of time served ...' Welcome to the world of Joshua Ferris' dazzlingly acute, brilliantly original, agonizingly funny novel. The dotcom bubble has just burst on an advertising agency on Chicago's Magnificent Mile. Employees shuffle slowly up the steps towards the revolving doors, afraid of what is waiting to greet them inside their cubicles ..."Then We Came to the End" is about how we spend our days and too many of our nights. It is about being away from friends and family, about sharing a stretch of stained carpet with a group of strangers we call colleagues. It is about sitting all morning next to someone you deliberately cross the road to avoid at lunchtime. Joshua Ferris' fabulous novel is the story of your life, and mine. It is the story of our times.
I hated it. It was slow, repetitive and boring. If this is modern corporate life I don't want any of it.
Aug 17, 2008
Office Gossip - Gotta love it?
The view point in the book can be wearying at times, but it creates a picture of something that almost all of us recognize, the modern office.
Like much good literature, it asks the question, "What in life is really important?" It, also, makes clear that the people we spend the most time with, our co-workers, may not be the people that we believe them to be. That may be a good thing.
Jul 10, 2008
A timely topic and good book
A fascinating and enjoyable book (even if it did tend to drag at times). Seldom do we stop and think about the wonderful, interesting and sometimes trying relationships we develop through our work environment. The co-workers in this successful advertising firm form a family-like network bound to each other in powerful ways. When hard economic times strike, this corporate family begins to unravel revealing some strange and humorous characters. Ferris? topic is timely in these tough economic times. There may be many who can relate.
May 10, 2007
It truly is fun to read a novel set in my day to day world. This is Dilbert-esque in the perceptions and realities of what goes on in Corporate America. I laughed at the goings on because it was such a good, albeit sometimes caricatured, perspective on life in Cubeville: the gossip, the infighting, the drama and the interchanges of lives woven together during the work day. It's set in an advertising company, so it's a nice glimpse into that world, but it transcends that to touching all of us who work in the politically correctly termed "workstation." Worth passing along to a colleague.
May 3, 2007
One of the most amusingly snarky (yet heartfelt) first novels ever about, well, work -- vis a vis life, love, anger, marriage, community, protocol, stolen office chairs, and mysteriously bequeathed totem poles. Should be required reading for anyone who's ever typed away in a cube, and wondered if they're making a difference in the world, or even just an impact on their co-workers. Answer: yes.
Publishers Weekly, 2007-01-08 In this wildly funny debut from former ad man Ferris, a group of copywriters and designers at a Chicago ad agency face layoffs at the end of the '90s boom. Indignation rises over the rightful owner of a particularly coveted chair ("We felt deceived"). Gonzo e-mailer Tom Mota quotes Walt Whitman and Ralph Waldo Emerson in the midst of his tirades, desperately trying to retain a shred of integrity at a job that requires a ruthless attention to what will make people buy things. Jealousy toward the aloof and "inscrutable" middle manager Joe Pope spins out of control. Copywriter Chris Yop secretly returns to the office after he's laid off to prove his worth. Rumors that supervisor Lynn Mason has breast cancer inspire blood lust, remorse, compassion. Ferris has the downward-spiraling office down cold, and his use of the narrative "we" brilliantly conveys the collective fear, pettiness, idiocy and also humanity of high-level office drones as anxiety rises to a fever pitch. Only once does Ferris shift from the first person plural (for an extended fugue on Lynn's realization that she may be ill), and the perspective feels natural throughout. At once delightfully freakish and entirely credible, Ferris's cast makes a real impression. (Mar.) Copyright 2007 Reed Business Information.
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