Then We Came to the End

  • by Joshua Ferris
  • Narrated by Deanna Hurst
  • 4 hrs and 32 mins
  • Abridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

An astounding debut novel, wickedly funny and big-hearted, about life in the office, signals the arrival of a gloriously talented new writer.No one knows us quite the same way as the men and women who sit beside us in department meetings and crowd the office refrigerator with their labeled yogurts. Every office is a family of sorts, and the Chicago ad agency Joshua Ferris brilliantly depicts in his debut novel is family at its strangest and best. The characters in Then We Came to an End cope with a business downturn in the time-honored way: through gossip, secret romance, elaborate pranks, and increasingly frequent coffee breaks. As one colleague after another is seen "walking Spanish down the hall" (office shorthand for being fired), the survivors obsessively parse their bosses' decisions - when they're not competing for the best office furniture left behind or trying to make sense of the mysterious pro-bono ad campaign that is their only remaining "work". Joshua Ferris has a demon's eye for the details and emotions that make up our lives, and he has written a hilarious and moving novel about the strange selves we become when we walk through the office doors each day.


What the Critics Say

"Heartfelt and delivered in solemn deadpan. It may even be, in its own modest way, a great American novel." (Darcy Cosper, Los Angeles Times)
"Wildly funny....At once delightfully freakish and entirely credible, Ferris' cast makes a real impression." (Publishers Weekly)
"It's hilarious in a Catch-22 way, but with an undercurrent of sadness that works counterpoint to all the absurdity." (Stephen King)


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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Abridged Reading

We were eager to read this, after listening together to Joshua Ferris being interviewed on the NYT book review podcast, so we downloaded the Audible version and enjoyed it quite a lot. Between listening sessions we talked about the characters and shared our thoughts about the book's narrators. We did not realize until it was over that we were listening to an abridged version. As a rule, we don't read (or listen to) abridgements. So we don't feel qualified to review the book when we're really only read part of it! However, it is clever and entertaining and any former or current cube-dwellers will almost certainly find much to appreciate. The composite narrator (much of the story is told from the perspective of "us") feels as fresh and novel as the first time we read Jay McInerney's "Bright Lights, Big City" 23 years ago. We only wish the Audible version were not an abridgement. We felt, in the end, as if someone were missing.
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- Steve

Hilarious in book form, not so much for audio...

I wondered what all the hoopla was about after I had finished listening to the audiobook version of this. I don't have anything against the reader---she was OK. But the book content is a real slice-and-dice job of the original book. This abridged version cuts out a lot of the fun, quirky stuff and you don't get a sense of how funny the book really is. My advice: don't get this version.
Audible: please try to request an unabridged version!

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- Jas

Book Details

  • Release Date: 02-22-2007
  • Publisher: Hachette Audio