The Postmortal is set in an America not too far in the future,where a man has discovered the cure for aging. While at first this is outlawed, and is only received secretly by those who have enough money, then finally made available to everyone in the country. It is told from the point of view of a lawyer named John Farrell. He gets “the Cure”, as it is dubbed, early on. The story is a series of blog posts by him all about his experiences caused by “the Cure.” We watch as John loses people he loves and gains new ones. Readers get to experience all the trouble caused when humans think that they are immortal. The tragedy caused by those against this vast step forward, and the hardship caused by not enough resources to provide for the ever-growing population. New and crushing diseases are formed and devastate the country, the poor and hungry attack in hordes, and people known as “End Specialists” make their living killing those that don’t want to live this never-ending life anymore, or those that the country deems unworthy to live and take up resources. Tensions between countries rise, China outlaws the cure, and begins to tattoo its people with their birthdays. Russia forces everyone to get the cure, and builds its army to send out pillaging for resources. The U.S. army begins attacking our own people for their resources. The world falls into utter chaos. Will the world ever recover from this?
Drew Magary really takes a deep look into humanity and what agelessness would cause. He forces the reader to think about what they would do in this situation. Whether you would get the cure, how you would deal with the changes in our world once this situation takes hold. It is very interesting the way that he forces us to look at this situation through the eyes of this lawyer. The way that John himself seems to move through life kind of ambivalent to the world around him until he gets the cure. The way John changes as a character, going from a carefree lawyer to someone constantly obsessing over death and the happenings of the world. Is not aging worth all the grief it causes? The book never really answers, that is something the reader must figure out for themselves. The Postmortal is enthralling, the suspense drags you in and makes you forget how long you have been reading — or in my case, listening to the Hoopla audiobook — the story flows well, despite having a lot of news articles and internet comments. The formatting for the novel — blog posts — was a really interesting way to represent the story. The ending to the book feels a bit unfinished, perhaps Magary is thinking about writing a sequel, or perhaps he just wants the reader to fill in the blanks at the end of the book. All in all it was a very interesting read.
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