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Ending Up

3.65  ·  Rating details ·  464 Ratings  ·  67 Reviews
An alternative cover edition for this ISBN can be found here

The title refers to how we spend our retirement years, often called "golden," though in Kingsley Amis' hands anything but.

At Tuppenny-Hapenny Cottage a clutch of oldsters, brought together more by ill fortune than blood or love, struggles with problems that range from penury to prostate. That's the good news. The
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Paperback, 176 pages
Published April 30th 1976 by Penguin (first published 1974)
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Glenn Russell
Nov 13, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition



British author Kingsley Amis’ 1973 novel of two old women and three old men living out their last days in Tuppenny-hapenny Cottage nestled among the trees and fields in a delightful English countryside. Sound quaint and perhaps charming? It is anything but quaint and charming – for the most part these five septuagenarians – Adela, the one squarely in charge, her brother, former army officer, Bernard, Bernard’s past sexual partner, a servant nicknamed Shorty, Marigold, an oldster becoming progres
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·Karen·
The Prince of Snark

Five old geezers sharing an over-stuffed house, but this is hardly the gently indulgent world of Quartet in Autumn nor the steely self-preservation of the residents in Mrs Palfrey at the Claremont. No, this is savage. Harsh.
Amis can be uproariously funny in his descriptions: I especially liked the idea of Marigold having a figure that, at 73, was 'still recognizably female' for example, and there's a delightful scene where Marigold puts in a request for a drink (alcoholic) in
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sanne_reads
May 14, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: library
Hilarious, I love this book, and I love the elderly.
Jim Leckband
May 06, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I'm sure you've all heard the comment of a book "I didn't care for the book since I didn't like any of the characters." Well those readers should stay away from Kingsley Amis and stick to romance or YA novels where there are plenty of characters to like.

On the other hand if you like reading about a bunch of snarky old age pensioners that have 45 hilarious ways of being irritable to each other, then this is the book for you. (The "45" comes from comments of Amis about specific irritations he put
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Lazarus P Badpenny Esq
Compellingly sour and Amis has an acute ear for comic dialogue.
Eleanor
A grim yet savagely funny book about five elderly people who share a house as they creep through their lives. Each of the five characters is drawn brilliantly. Each, even the vicious Bernard, can be pitied. I can only hope I don't end up in such a ménage!

There are many laugh out loud moments, as for instance when the local doctor is talking to Marigold, a woman who drives the others to distraction by using phrases such as "drinkie-pinkie":

"'Would you call her one of the most interesting people y
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Katherine Kreuter
Nov 07, 2017 rated it liked it
I firmly liked this, but found the style slightly dated. It's interesting to compare this tale of geriatric co-habitees with later works in the same vein, particulary Best Exotic Marigold Hotel. Both feature groups of the elderly living together more for convenience than genuine affection. Kingsley's book is the first of his that I've read. At the time this book was originally published, his reputation was firmly established by Lucky Jim. So he was in a sense writing for an existing fan base who ...more
Phil
Jan 09, 2017 rated it really liked it
Kingsley Amis was always acutely aware of the absurdities and indignities of ageing, and it is one of the recurring themes of his fiction to explore this in all its painful truth. Perhaps this was a result of his having initially made his name as an 'angry young man', and then become aware that many of the assumptions and causes that this implied bore little relevance to the wider priorities of existence. It's nevertheless true that few English novelists - particularly of Amis's generation - had ...more
Melissa
May 25, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: nyrb-classics
I received an ARC of this title from the publisher.

In this comedy about old age, Amis provides us with a geriatric cast of characters living under the same roof who are basically trying to stay as comfortable and happy as possible before they die. There are five septuagenarians in total, three men and two women. Although they want nothing put peace in their final years, they manage to annoy each other and bicker to the point where peace is the last thing that any one of them is going find.

Adela
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Heather
May 20, 2010 marked it as to-read
I was invited and went to dinner with a human rights lawyer yoga teacher, philosophy professor, Swahili fluent Indian, and a pro skier photographer. It sounds like the beginning of a joke and was just as hilarious and intriguing as a good one might be.

We spent a lively portion of the eve bantering about British literature and humor (Which I only know through media. That's enough to make me expert, right? I do need to go to London and surrounding countryside. So often wowed by my vicarious exper
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Michael Bafford
I thought this was the book of Amis' old age. The rascal was only 50 when he wrote it. Possibly he was preparing those around him for his declining years, if we can believe Wikipedia, which I do.

This was still a pretty good read. All Englishmen seem to be oddballs and eccentrics so why would old Englishmen be any different. Of our party of five inhabiting Tupenny-hapenny cottage only two can be considered to be sympathetic. I mean Adela and George. And Adela is tiresomely pining for love and Ge
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Realini
Ending Up by Kingsley Amis


Discovering Kingsley Amis could be one of the most exhilarating, luminous, paramount, otherworldly and amusing experiences, given the extraordinary talent of an author that has won the Booker Prize – for which he was short-listed three times – and his first book, Lucky Jim, has been included on the All-TIME 100 Novels list -http://realini.blogspot.com/2018/05/l...

The extraordinary experience of reading Ending Up comes as no surprise for some acquainted with Kingsley Ami
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Maggie Rusnak
Dec 13, 2017 rated it it was ok
Didn't much care for it. Didn't find it funny. Had to stop 70% through when (view spoiler) I'll call it a read since I did make it through more than 2/3. Too bad because the premise was great!
M.k. Yost
Well this was depressing as hell...
Mauro
Jul 29, 2015 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Pessimism, sarcasm and old age.
You read this one and hope you won't go that far. But you will, ah, you will.
Jim
May 27, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction, humor
Grim humor to say the least! Imagine five elderly people, three men and two women, living together in a large house. In writing Ending Up, Kingsley Amis imagined all the bad traits of the people he knew multiplied many times over and carried forward into old age.

The worst of them is Brigadier Bernard Bascom, who straight out wishes to do harm. There is Shorty, his former lover, who acts as a servant to the group; George Zeyer, a scholar who is unable to move from his bed; Adela, Bascom's sister;
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Paul O'Leary
Aug 13, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Funny...
Before beginning Amis' Ending Up, I had been pondering my approaching senior citizen status. As I'm of a churlish disposition in general(I swear it's everyone else, not me!), I have commented to my lovely wife that I was gleefully looking forward to reaching seniority so I could really begin to complain. Avec moi, le déluge.. I would really "up my game" when I eventually(coming soon!) hit fifty. The prospect of being old enough to gripe about most everything and everyone appealed to me a
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Uthpala Dassanayake
Kingsley Amis being a Man Booker winner and short listed several times I expected something exceptional. But the moment I started reading first few sentences of “Ending Up”, what I felt was “This writing is so ordinary”. Reading through, found some better stuff, but never exceptional. Ending up of the story is so crude.
I try not to judge Amis by the only book I read of him.
Pete daPixie
Fast approaching the age that I am 'ending up', I thought this short essay quite amusing. My first foray into the writing of Amis. Strong characterisation culminating in a farcical twist. Nominated for the Booker prize back in 1974.
Louise
Well, that was fun. 5 old crotchety characters (including an old dog) that you're not going to like, but in a way you do. Dark humour to be sure.
Sarah  T
Absolutely brutal. Loved it.
Mark Ellis
Jun 02, 2018 rated it liked it
Funny and cruel in a typical Kingsley Amis way but not his best. A dry run perhaps for the later brilliant Old Devils?
Lisa Beaulieu
Apr 24, 2018 rated it did not like it
One of the most mean-spirited things I have ever read. I had a moment feeling sorry for Bernard toward the end, but it was brief. Cringed my way through the whole thing. A deeply inhumane book.
David
Jan 21, 2018 rated it really liked it
Darkly comic.
Chris Montez
May 25, 2018 rated it really liked it
If you're in the mood for a British dark comedy, this is the book for you.
Bryce Wilson
Jul 30, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Holy shit.

I think this was his masterpiece.
Cheryl
Aug 30, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Kingsley Amis is my new favorite author. Great book, had me laughing out loud.
Lois
Oct 16, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
First Amis. Poor Shorty. Awesome dark humor.
Rae
Jan 31, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2018, other-fiction
Dark humor about the elderly, the aging process, and death.
British.
Paul C. Stalder
A pleasure to read, combined with prose dripping in wit. While I was rather disappointed by the actual plot, the sheer style of the book is almost worth it alone.
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Sir Kingsley William Amis, CBE was an English novelist, poet, critic, and teacher. He wrote more than twenty novels, three collections of poetry, short stories, radio and television scripts, and books of social and literary criticism. He fathered the English novelist Martin Amis.

Kingsley Amis was born in Clapham, Wandsworth, Couty of London (now South London), England, the son of William Robert Am
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