Saturday 10 October 2020

After The End

I've read I Let You Go, I See You, and Let Me Lie by Clare Mackintosh. Last year she brought out After The End, a different genre to the three I'd already read so I didn't go out of my way to read it, but when I saw it on a Kindle deal I thought I'd give it a go.

"Max and Pip are the strongest couple you know. Only now they're facing the most important decision of their lives - and they don't agree.

With the consequences of an impossible choice threatening to devastate them both, nothing will ever be the same again."

The story is split into two halves, the first half covering the devastating situation that Max and Pip find themselves in. Their two year old child is in Paediatric Intensive Care suffering from brain damage resulting from surgery to remove a brain tumor. They have the unenviable decision of deciding whether to transfer him to a hospital in America for treatment, which may or may not prolong his life, or follow the hospital's advice to provide him with palliative care which will ultimately lead to his death. Max and Pip don't agree.

The second part of the story is 'After The End' and follows two separate stories of what happens to Max and Pip after their son dies.

It's very clever how the second part of the book follows two pathways depending on which decision is taken, though I must say that I found it quite confusing following what was happening as it flits in time and storyline from chapter to chapter and the ending had me totally baffled. I like Clare Mackintosh's twists in her books but I don't think this book, with the subject matter as it is, calls for it.

I'd say it's an okay book but it is a story of two halves and I much preferred the first half where I knew where I was and I didn't have to concentrate quite so much.


  1. Thanks for your book review, they are so useful when choosing a possible read.

  2. I am not sure I could read this book, I have struggled in the past reading books like this, I can't cope with the sadness.

  3. Those awful decisions were too many to witness as my life in the NICU. It made me so sad. You try to have a thick professional skin, but it is impossible . I can't even read those stories now even if they are fiction. I honestly , think it changed my life working there. I often wish I hadn't . IT was hard to relate to others in the park, etc, when they complained about their own problems. They were valid of course, but when you are just coming off shift and a baby had seizures the whole time, and you had to hold it together for the parents, your perspective is very skewed. YOU know what matters, and that is a gift that comes from it. But you also see death so much more than people who are not in the healthcare fields. I can't read those sad books....

  4. I do like her books but will probably not read this one, it all sounds too upsetting and confusing too. Thank you for saving me some money. x

  5. Many thanks for the book review.
    I don't think it's one for me though.

    All the best Jan

  6. Oh, this sounds too sad for me. I'm a terrible

  7. I didn't like the ending and couldn't really decide what had actually happened. I did cry at a lot of different parts of the story though.