But is it so easy? // The Easy Way Out by Steven Amsterdam

But is it so easy? // The Easy Way Out by Steven AmsterdamThe Easy Way Out by Steven Amsterdam
Published by Hachette UK on November 3rd 2016
Rating: four-stars
Genres: Fiction, Literary, General
Pages: 320

'A poignant, sharply funny story that raises questions about life, death, and love' Louise O'Neill
'You might just want to find and hug a nurse after finishing this thoughtful and ethically nuanced novel' Guardian
Evan is the one at the hospital who hands out the last drink to those who ask for it.
Evan's friends don't know what he does during the day. His mother, Viv, doesn't know what he's up to at night. And his supervisor suspects there may be trouble ahead.
As he helps one patient after another die, Evan pushes against the limits of the law - and his own morality. And with Viv increasingly unwell, his love life complicated, to say the least, Evan begins to wonder who might be there for him, when the time comes.
From an award-winning author, The Easy Way Out is a brilliantly funny and exquisitely sad novel that gets to the heart of one of the most difficult questions each of us may face: would you help someone die?

The Easy Way Out was promised to me to be uplifting, funny, thoughtful, and it very much was all of those things. It probably wouldn’t have been a novel I would have picked up myself, but after an email from the publicist for the book, the book was firmly on my radar. It sounded right up my street, and I don’t mean that in a weird way, but honestly? Euthanasia interests me – why someone would choose to go that way, whether that’s braver than suffering for no real reason, it’s just a really interesting topic.

Evan’s story is so sad, but so interesting. There’s part of me that wants to wrap this damaged man-child up in a blanket and tell him everything would be okay. He just seemed kind of down all the time, which is extra worrying, considering what he can lay his hands on, am I right? But I also liked the part of him that was, in his own weird way, helping people to stop suffering. Because that’s quite an amazing thing, it’s just hard to read, because no one wants to think of anyone in that kind of situation, but the way these guys deal with the patients they see, day in, day out is pretty impressive.

One of the most impressive plot points of the novel is Evan’s relationship with his mother, Viv. Viv is so bright, so sparky, so full of life, that to see her cruelly took down by Parkinsons was so, so hard to swallow. And her relationship with Evan is complicated, but there’s so much love there, as proven come the end of this compelling, interesting read.

The Easy Way Out is one of those books that will stay with me for life, true story. It’s kind of hard to forget this kind of plot, and all the occurs within the pages of this book, and Evan’s life is like a tragic comedy, where you want to look away, cover your eyes and keep looking like watching a car crash. I can see this novel soaring when it releases, this was such a compelling book, I really enjoyed it (which is a weird thing to say considering the plot, but hey ho, I did enjoy it, and it certainly kept me reading).


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