Some Kind of Ending
The chaos that can encompass one’s existence shines throughout the pages of Some Kind of Ending. The wayward life of Doug includes drunken binges, mindless spending, and awakening in parts unknown. The search for the “Lady with Red Bikini” consumes his thoughts as his head attempts to shrug off the latest bacchanalia. Frank is surviving in North Dakota, but he is eyeing an escape to the Northwest. Ian Bliss is a writer, with covert affiliations, who is covering the latest global scrums in Cold-War (hot-war) Central America and other various places. Andre is a lothario with a standing line of one-night stands, and he is aimless in his movements as well, but his written words and views on life propel him to an adventure. He doesn’t know that pursuing parties are seeking to save his troubled soul. Doug is currently working in the trade of the deadliest catch, thrown together with a crew of foreigners, whose only goal is the lucrative payout at the end of the voyage. The money to be made makes the loneliness almost worthwhile. Doug receives letters from his mother intermittently, telling of the latest death in the family as an almost afterthought. The dependency on the chemical highs are the only things that help keep them on an even keel, as the rough seas and stranger crew members serve as eye openers to be kept mindful of. The perilous times of the 1980s serve as a backdrop to the weird and crazy journey our protagonists are ensnared in. Contras, Sandinistas, Ronald Reagan, and the CIA all have their walk-on roles. The characters are all on a collision course, but where will they intersect? Will there be anyone left in the aftermath? Will Doug’s mom ever write a positive letter to her prodigal son? The reader will have to discover that.
Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas was subtitled as A Savage Journey to the Heart of the American Dream. Some Kind of Ending is a next-generation take on the gonzo journey men are capable of embarking on. The action veers from different directions, concentrating on one protagonist for a short take, then on to the next. The drugs and alcohol consumed by the characters set up the insanity throughout, the illustrations appearing throughout to guide the way along a fuzzy road. The book is a hodgepodge of confusion but not necessarily in a negative way. The book is a tour de force with a worthwhile payoff for those who stick with it.
Chris Hayden has been working at City Book Review since 2012, so that makes him the keeper of knowledge. He manages the office and book reviewers (all 200 of them!), which is no small feat. If you’re looking at the book reviews here, you’re seeing them because he sent the books out for review. Without him, this place would fall apart, because no one else in the office knows how to use the postage machine. Two words: job security.
|Author||Conon Parks with Mike MacNeil|
|Page Count||256 pages|
|Publisher||Brave Dog/Dead Dog Artworks|
|Amazon||Buy this Book|