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This is How it Ends

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Ella Riordan is a community activist who became famous when she was beaten by police during a social protest. Now Ella is a squatter in a building where the owners are evicting tenants so they can convert it into luxury condos, and she’s determined to stay and defend the few holdout tenants, despite death threats.

One night after a rooftop party with her fellow holdouts, Ella finds a horrible scene awaiting her in her apartment. In a panic, she calls her neighbor Molly, who convinces her that the police won’t believe she’s innocent. Together the two women concoct a gruesome plan to hide the body down the building’s elevator shaft.

But the secret won’t stay buried for long. As truth hangs in the balance, a neighbor tells Molly he had heard Ella arguing with a man in the hallway and mistrust grows between Ella and Molly, as repercussions of that night threaten to change both women’s lives forever.

310 pages, Hardcover

First published May 13, 2018

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About the author

Eva Dolan

16 books354 followers
Eva Dolan was shortlisted for the CWA Dagger for unpublished authors when only a teenager. The four novels in her Zigic and Ferreira series have been published to widespread critical acclaim: Tell No Tales and After You Die were shortlisted for the Theakston’s Crime Novel of the Year Award and After You Die was also longlisted for the CWA Gold Dagger. She lives in Cambridge.


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5 stars
181 (14%)
4 stars
411 (33%)
3 stars
419 (33%)
2 stars
157 (12%)
1 star
65 (5%)
Displaying 1 - 30 of 236 reviews
Profile Image for Paromjit.
2,601 reviews24.8k followers
January 4, 2018
Eva Dolan has written a superb bleak and atmospheric psychological thriller that provides background of how the the horror that resulted in the Grenfell Tower disaster came to manifest itself. It covers the burning issues of gentrification and the social and economic cleansing of the poor and the working class whilst the property developers ruthlessly profiteer in London. Dolan gives us a rare glimpse into the alternative lifestyles and lives of the political activists, revealing their human rivalries and flaws. Young idealistic Ella Riordan is a blogger and activist squatting in a tower block where most tenants have been evicted, she is protesting at plans to turn it into luxury flats. She is holding a roof top party to promote her book, when she ends up in her apartment below with a dead body of a man. She is feeling nervous and fraught as she phones Molly for help. Ella claims it was self defence which leads the two women to hide the body in a elevator shaft. Repercussions from their actions follow.

The narrative is delivered from the perspective of Ella and Molly, Ella's chapters go back in time to the present whilst Molly's go forward in time. Ella, it turns out is a PhD student from a wealthy family background who has been beaten up by the police in a protest. Her family are less than happy with her political activities. Middle aged Molly is a principled and experienced campaigner with a long history in dedicated political activism beginning at Greenham Common, but there has been precious little reward in any sphere of Molly's life. The relationship between the two women is at the heart of the story, with shades of a mother and daughter dynamic. However, before long Molly begins to suspect that Ella not been truthful about what happened and their relationship begins to decidedly fray. The web of lies, deceit and murder becomes apparent and there is a huge unexpected final twist.

Eva Dolan has written an intricate, dark, low key, multilayered and beautifully plotted story of depth. She gives us an incisive, relevant, and insightful picture of grassroots political activism and issues that affect our contemporary world, making this a highly pertinent read. The disparate characters of Ella and Molly are complex and nuanced, snagging the reader's interest with ease. The story is full of tension and suspense as it drives to the final conclusion. A brilliant psychological thriller from a gifted writer. Highly recommended! Many thanks to Bloomsbury for an ARC.
Profile Image for Liz.
2,020 reviews2,524 followers
March 2, 2018
3.5 stars
This starts as a book about taking on the system, about the little guys and gals railing against the system. A housing project in London is due to be destroyed to make way for luxury housing. Ella, a young blogger and anti-gentrification activist, is trying to fight the proposed project and help the six remaining owners. Molly is another more long term activist. One night, at a party for Ella’s upcoming book, there’s a death and Molly and Ella cover it up. I didn’t buy into their reasoning for doing so.

The book is told from each woman’s POV, and also from before and after the night of the party. I struggled with Ella, even the Ella of before the cover up. Flip side, I was sympathetic to Molly. Maybe because she’s closer to my age, but I appreciated all she’d given up through the years to be an activist and what those choices had now cost her. As an American, some of the protests named as part of Molly’s history were unknown to me and I had to google them to see if they were real. They are.

This was an interesting premise for me. Because it’s not a clear cut fight. The building in question is old, “ a toad of a building”, with “the smell of mold and rot”. It wasn’t a building that called out to be saved. And with only six families remaining of 300, it seemed more a fight for the sake of a fight than one designed to really change anything.

Now, I was reading an advance copy so I’m not sure if this is intentional or not. Was there a message in the lack of capitalization of some, but not all, formal names and the first word in many, but not all, sentences?

There is a huge twist at the end that I didn’t see coming. In fact, the ending was worth a half, if not a full, star. Because up until then, this book wasn’t really drawing me in.

My thanks to netgalley and Bloomsbury USA for an advance copy of this book.

Profile Image for Carrie.
3,156 reviews1,516 followers
March 12, 2018
This Is How It Ends by Eva Dolan is a psychological thriller. The story is told from alternating the prospective between Ella and Molly and also flashing back into the past to the events leading up to where the book begins.

As it starts off Ella has called her friend Molly to help her when after her party she finds herself with the body of a dead man. Ella claims to have been attacked and only defended herself but of course Molly doesn’t trust the police and offers to help Ella cover up the crime by ditching the body in the almost abandoned building they had been fighting to save.

The book then begins changing between the two ladies as it goes back to show how they had met and the campaign to save the building in which Molly lives. But it also has chapters in the current time after the murder in which Molly begins to question Ella’s story of just what happened that night.

I have to say that it seems when I was finished that I really seem to be in the minority on this book but unfortunately I just didn’t end up liking it much at all. My biggest problem started off when I just didn’t really care or connect to either Ella or Molly although I will say I liked Molly a bit more. But with not really connecting to either main character it just seemed to make everything that came after drag at a snail’s pace and I found it easy to put this one to the side which is rare for me.

The idea of fighting for the low income against the rich might have been intriguing if I could get behind the characters but instead I just didn’t find it interesting at all and couldn’t find it in me to care about the details to how Ella ended up with a dead man, I was more thinking oh just arrest them all so I can move onto my next read. So needless to say this one just wasn’t my cup of tea although the majority of reviewers do seem to love this one.

I received an advance copy from the publisher via NetGalley.

For more reviews please visit https://carriesbookreviews.com/
Profile Image for Sandysbookaday is (reluctantly) on hiatus.
1,969 reviews2,039 followers
January 26, 2018
EXCERPT: 'I'm going to expose you,' he snarled.

The laughter caught in her throat. It was as if he was there in front of her, face contorted with rage, body blown up and pumped for the fight.

'I know what you did, Ella.'

A man ran up the stairs, clipping her shoulder as he passed, but she hardly noticed.

'And I know how you did it,' Quinn said.

THE BLURB: Ella Riordan is a community activist who became famous when she was beaten by police during a social protest. Now Ella is a squatter in a building where the owners are evicting tenants so they can convert it into luxury condos, and she’s determined to stay and defend the few holdout tenants, despite death threats.

One night after a rooftop party with her fellow holdouts, Ella finds a horrible scene awaiting her in her apartment. In a panic, she calls her neighbor Molly, who convinces her that the police won’t believe she’s innocent. Together the two women concoct a gruesome plan to hide the body down the building’s elevator shaft.

But the secret won’t stay buried for long. As truth hangs in the balance, a neighbor tells Molly he had heard Ella arguing with a man in the hallway and mistrust grows between Ella and Molly, as repercussions of that night threaten to change both women’s lives forever.

MY THOUGHTS: I really did not connect with this book. I read it. I finished it. It was okay.

The book is told from two points of view, Ella's and Molly's, over two timelines, then and now. In some cases this works; in this case it doesn't. There should, ideally, be a 'trigger' for the change in timelines for it to flow smoothly. In This is How it Ends, this never happened. The changes appear to have been totally random, with nothing connecting the switch. I spent a great deal of time feeling confused and going back to the previous chapter to try and figure out what precipitated the change. Usually, the answer was nothing.

This is How it Ends failed to keep me interested. I would read a chapter or two, then wander off to look for something else to do. I never thought I would see the day when I would prefer housework to reading! It wasn’t bad enough that I felt like I should abandon it, but it is not a book that I will be recommending to my reader friends.

However, I know I am in the minority with my feelings on This is The Way it Ends by Eva Dolan, so if you enjoyed the excerpt and like the sound of the blurb, please go ahead and read This is The Way it Ends, and please let me know what you think of it.

Thank you to Bloomsbury UK & ANZ, Raven Books for providing a digital copy of This is The Wayit Ends by Eva Dolan for review. All opinions expressed in this review are entirely my own personal opinions. Please refer to my Goodreads.com profile page or the 'about ' page on sandysbookaday.wordpress.com for an explanation of my rating system. This review and others are also published on my blog sandysbookaday.wordpress.com.
Profile Image for Christine.
831 reviews147 followers
November 12, 2017
Eva Dolan has ventured into the sphere of the psychological thriller with This Is How It Ends. She has done it magnificently, bringing wit and depth to this tale of two women.

We enter into a very different subculture. A rather fascinating and vibrant one. This is the world of the activist. These are the people who take direct action, rather than sitting at home and moaning about what is wrong with the world. The people who demonstrate in public, with placards and get the attention of authorities. The ones who end up being kettled by the police. Some cause disruption, damage property and take part in other criminal actions. It is a world of petty jealousies and competitiveness. They regard newcomers with suspicion. These are people who want to change the world.

We meet two very different women, living this alternative lifestyle. The drama is followed from their two perspectives and jumps back and forwards between time-frames. Molly is the seasoned long term activist, who earned her stripes at Greenham Common. Ella is the young university Phd student and blogger, finding her feet and eager to make her mark against authority. We see they have a sort of mother/daughter relationship. Molly is protective and supportive of Ella, guiding her in this new environment. They are both camped out in a semi-derelict tower block in London, which is marked for development. They intend to be a thorn in the side of the developers, for as long as possible. Definitely we see shades of Grenfell Tower, as gentrification is a reality here. Social cleansing in action.

There is a death. A man is killed. He is left in a lift shaft. Only Molly and Ella know what happened. We follow the drama, as both women have to deal with the emotional repercussions of this terrible event. This incident leads to an increasingly complex web of lies and deceit. Can Ella trust Molly? Can Molly trust Ella?

This is incredible. A masterclass in uniting a strong storyline, with escalating tension and thoroughly complex characters. It is utterly unique. We get a dollop of realism. Dolan takes us right into the heart of this unfamiliar world, to see the realities of living an anti-establishment lifestyle. It is powerful. It is harsh. It is bleak. Although I guessed what was coming, I was completely enthralled by the way it played out.

Clever. Brilliant. Stunning. Top marks!

Highly recommended, for fans of quality crime.
Profile Image for Liz Barnsley.
3,430 reviews990 followers
September 11, 2017
Well to be honest I’m not sure where to begin. I’m certainly sure that the end has left me with that melancholy, low key buzz of a feeling that all real readers will know when they’ve just finished a novel that will linger in the senses and be the benchmark for future reads for a long long time to come.

Eva Dolan’s Zigic and Ferreira series is one of the best, most authentic police series out there but This Is How It Ends enters a whole new league of subtle brilliance that defies explanation in any kind of review – things to note though are the beautifully immersive writing, the insightful and deeply layered characters and the ability to recreate the world we are living in without need for filter or fuss. Socially relevant, entertaining yes but also utterly genuine and just getting you right in the heart.

This Is How It Ends is masterfully plotted – A party, a body and two friends who live in a world of protest and activism, suddenly faced with a moral dilemma – This is how it began…

I’m not telling you anymore about the detailed plot than that and I hope HOPE that not many reviewers coming after me do either. This is a masterclass of suspense and character study, peeling back layers of both the fact and the fiction of these two women, until you are left with how it ends. If you know almost anything else it won’t have the same impact – and it does have impact, trust me on that one. I was blown away by the ultimate resolution both emotionally and practically, all I could do was sit there and shake my head at the pure resonance of it (and give a small nod of approval to the clever way Eva Dolan had manipulated my head)

Look this is classically good writing right? There are a plethora of brilliant crime and thriller writers around, using language in many different ways to entertain us, but there a few, those very few that just have that depth of emotion, that literary twist to the way they do things, that thing in their storytelling that tells you they were born to do this – and this author is one of those. She’s been showing us for a while now, but with this novel, undoubtedly for this reader her best so far, she’s hit that sweet spot that starts defining a writing career.

Exquisitely understated prose that digs deep, two characters that you will live with, an utterly utterly riveting story with a final denouement that will leave you stunned, This Is How It Ends heads straight onto my favourites of all time list. No messing. Sometimes that’s just the way it is.

Read this. This is what it’s all about. Eva Dolan is the real deal.

Highly Recommended.

Profile Image for Josh.
1,636 reviews148 followers
March 13, 2018
Ella is an activist for a just cause – she’s at the forefront of a movement to halt the ever expanding London skyline; the corporate empire dredging out the lower socio-economic families in rundown apartment housing for capital gain, pimping overseas investment growth.

Molly is a tenant and former big league activist in her own right, past her corporate-fighting days, she’s now a top class photographer content to sit on the sidelines, capturing key moments of rallies, movements, celebrations, and heartbreak to ensure the public eye isn’t tainted by political spin.

The two form a bond through a common interest which evolves into a near mother-daughter relationship, a relationship which is tested to extremes when Molly unwittingly becomes an accomplice to murder.

Told through present and past tense via alternating multi POV chapters between Ella and Molly, This is How it Ends is a cleverly written novel which traps the reader into the semi-false narrative of its protagonist.

My rating: 4/5 I loved the way This is How it Ends ended - a twist I didn't see coming which flipped the script on its head. I'll have to track down more books by Eva Dolen, if This is How it Ends is anything to go by.
Profile Image for Emma.
974 reviews975 followers
October 2, 2017
Cleverly plotted and blindingly well written, this psychological thriller takes you into the world of social activism and murder. As with all of Dolan's work, it brings contemporary issues right to your front door, forming them into created situations that challenge the way you think, about people especially. She's not afraid to take you into grey areas and her characters are so complex, natural, and real, that they provoke a strong emotional reaction in you, like they really did just turn up on your doorstep for a chat.

And yet, this is why this book loses one star from me. Ella is so hard to spend time with that it's taken me a ridiculous amount of time to read a book I could usually finish in one sitting. I had to force myself to pick the book up again and each revelation about her character only made me dislike her more. Maybe this means I should be giving extra stars for such a brilliant creation on the part of the author, but if it wasn't this author, I would have put the book down, especially as the other main character, Molly, isn't that much easier to take. I can't even explain why as it's too spoilery and I think people should read the book anyway, but i'm very bloody pleased that it's over.

ARC via Netgalley.
Profile Image for Carolyn.
2,173 reviews615 followers
January 28, 2018
This is a complex psychological thriller set in the world of social activism. Ella Riordan is a PhD student writing her thesis on social activism. At first the activists Ella wanted to interview were wary of her but after she was beaten by police at a rally, they began to talk to her. Now she has become involved in trying to stop the eviction of people from a low cost housing tower by developers planning to build a new expensive apartment block in its place. Ella has written a book about the evictions with her friend Molly, an older, experienced activist and photographer and they decide to hold a launch party on the roof of the housing tower. After the party a body is found in the elevator shaft. Ella claims to not know the man or have seen him at the party but Molly feels she is hiding something and wonders if she can really trust her.

While Ella doesn’t get on well with her well off parents, Molly and Eva have almost a mother and daughter relationship which is central to this novel. Eva Dolan has used an interesting technique of telling Molly’s story going forward in time and Ella’s going backwards in time. The reason for this approach all makes sense when the threads all pull together with a giant twist at the end.

With thanks to Netgalley, the author and Bloomsbury Publishing for a copy of the book to read and review
Profile Image for Ova - Excuse My Reading.
474 reviews365 followers
May 15, 2018
A Brilliant, gritty, hopeless story.

I loved the way the book was structured/implemented. Very, very clever. I admit it was difficult to get into the story as it goes back and forth between "then and now" from multiple PoV's in a chaotic way but, wow!

The end was absolutely amazing and worth it.

The characterisation was flawless. Molly was built skillfully and through her a lot of social issues were addressed, and having read so many books overcrowded with 'issues' I think it was very well balanced in this book .
Profile Image for Ken.
2,164 reviews1,322 followers
August 12, 2018
An enjoyable crime drama that demands your attention, focusing on people’s actions rather than the crime itself.

Told through two different POVs as Ella narrates the past and Molly the present as both women try and attempt to hide a body...

The story opens as Ella calls Molly to help her as having attended a party and finds herself with a dead man.
Ella convinces her friend that he attacked her first, but she feels that the police won’t believe her story and the pair try to hide the crime.

I really liked how the book instantly thrusts the reader into the story, which leads straight to the separate narrations.
I’m glad that Dolan kept all the past POV’s to just the one character as it was easy to follow the timelines.
But I do feel trying to keep close attention to the numerous switches every couple of pages did disrupt the follow of the story slightly.

Molly starting to question Ella’s account of the events in the present day was really fascinating.
Highly enjoyable but it didn’t quite grip me as much as I would have liked.
Profile Image for Crime by the Book.
192 reviews1,607 followers
February 3, 2018
Find my full review here: http://crimebythebook.com/blog/2018/1...

This book delivered one of my most conflicted reading experiences in recent memory! I absolutely loved its final 100 or so pages - but the earlier half of the book I found a bit slow and difficult to follow due to a plotline told in reverse chronological order. You can find my full thoughts on the book’s pros and cons in my blog post!
Profile Image for Andy Weston.
2,423 reviews147 followers
May 4, 2018
If indeed this is ‘the most critically acclaimed crime thriller of 2018’ it’s going to be a very disappointing year for the genre. I’m not sure who gave the novel that subtitle, but it is quite inapplicable. I’m not sure how I managed not to stop reading this. Looking back I certainly should have stopped.
There is very little to redeem this. I may not be it’s target audience, but I decided to read it based on a positive review on the CrimeReads website which is usually very reliable.
Profile Image for ReadsSometimes.
218 reviews55 followers
February 1, 2018
This is how it begins.
With a near-empty building, the inhabitants forced out of their homes by property developers.
With two women: idealistic, impassioned blogger Ella and seasoned campaigner, Molly.
With a body hidden in a lift shaft.
But how will it end?

I always relish a new Eva Dolan novel and this certainly lived up to my expectations.
Once again, Eva has blown me away with this contemporary and eloquent piece of modern-day crime fiction. We learn the story of Ella and Molly who are both activists. Ella is a young, ambitious and very creative with her blog. She’s hoping she can put a lot of input and energy into their campaign and impress Molly, the senior, most seasoned part of the group.
I’m not going to go into how they both become involved with a body in a lift shaft. I’ll leave that for your own pleasure as it helps build the story.
Everything about this book is finely tuned. Not only the storyline but the way that Eva tells the story in her wonderful and unique way. Very humane with her characters and so up to date with the research, this book could’ve been written in a few years time!
Loved it and highly recommend!
Profile Image for Summer.
332 reviews87 followers
September 7, 2021
After attending a party Ella finds herself alone with a dead man. Unsure of what to do, she calls her best friend Molly. Ella tells Molly that the man attacked her and she accidentally killed him while defending herself. Molly does not want the police involved so she helps Ella by hiding the body in an abandoned building. But ultimately the two friends start to question each other's motives and they do not trust each other.

This story is told from Ella and Molly’s point of views with alternating timelines.

Wow! This is a superbly twisted and suspenseful psychological thriller. My jaw almost hit the floor after reading this one. I loved the complex characters and the strong plotline. Not only is this a fantastic thriller but it is a social commentary on activism. Eve Dolan is a brilliant writer and I look forward to reading more of her work.

I highly recommend this book to all psychological thriller fans! This book would be perfect for fans of Alice Feeney and Mary Kubica. Many thanks to Netgalley and the publisher for the arc in exchange for an honest review!
Profile Image for Fictionophile .
1,027 reviews331 followers
January 12, 2019
To read my full review of this novel visit my blog: https://fictionophile.wordpress.com/2...

First off, I have to say the writing was brilliant. I enjoyed the pacing, and the atmosphere that the author evoked. I really wanted to connect with the characters, but found to my disappointment that I really could not. This impacted on my overall enjoyment of the novel - I think it would have been a 5-star read otherwise. Perhaps the lives of the characters were just so far divergent from my own experience? I don't know... If I had to pick a favourite character it would be Molly Fader.
Ultimately, this is a novel about betrayal. About how people who you would trust your life with can turn around and betray you in the worst ways. It asks the age old question, "Can you really EVER know another person?"
"This is how it ends" has a VERY memorable ending. One of those endings that you just know will stick in your mind for months, years...
This is my first read by Eva Dolan and I know that I want to read more of her work. The first novel in her Zigic and Ferraria police procedural series "Long Way Home" is on my TBR.

I received a complimentary digital copy of this novel from Bloomsbury USA via NetGalley. This review is my small way of saying thank-you.
Profile Image for Mandy White (mandylovestoread).
2,029 reviews528 followers
December 23, 2017
Well that was a twist that I certainly did not see coming! The story of 2 women... a young activist and an older women who is like a mother figure. It jumps between the 2 women... before and after the body is thrown down the elevator shaft.

Thank you to Netgalley and Bloomsbury publishing for a copy of this book to read and review
Profile Image for H.A. Leuschel.
Author 5 books251 followers
March 9, 2018
What a fantastic page-turner! I found myself completely immersed in the fascinating and gripping narrative that alternates between the main protagonists - two women with complicated pasts and dark secrets. I did guess the twist early on BUT it actually didn't spoil my enthusiasm to find out how this would end at all. Highly recommended!
544 reviews12 followers
October 2, 2017
I've not read any of Eva Dolan's previous novels, but having read this standalone thriller, I really want to. Like most psychological thrillers these days, it's told in alternating chapters from two people's point of view, one in the third person (Ella) and one in the first (Molly). Ella finds herself with a dead body on her hands, and calls Molly for help. Molly's chapters go forward in time, from the death onwards, and Ella's go backwards in time over the weeks and months leading up to it, so we slowly find out more about her life. Ella is a young left-wing political activist with a growing media profile, and Molly is a veteran activist now in her fifties, who has taken Ella under her wing. The pair have been, unsuccessfully, trying to stop developers buying up the now mostly empty and increasingly derelict London tower block where Molly lives. During a roof party to celebrate a book about the project which Ella is publishing, Ella goes down to one of the flats, from from there calls Molly about the body. Ella claims that the dead man tried to attack her and that she accidentally killed him in self-defence. As we find out more about both central characters, it emerges that Ella comes from a privileged background, and her father is prominent figure in the police force. Her parents are disgusted with her recent activism, and, conversely, many of her fellow activists mistrust her because of her background. Molly, on the other hand, has dedicated her life to political causes, and has little to show for it in terms of wealth, career or family. Can Molly and Ella trust each other? Sometimes these dually narrated, time-bending thrillers can be misjudged and clunky - but this is very adeptly done, and though you can guess to some extent where it's going, it's hard to guess the details. I really enjoyed it, and it surprised me to the end!
Profile Image for Wendi Lee.
Author 1 book468 followers
March 15, 2018
Ella and her mentor, Molly, are both political activists and close friends. So when Ella appears with a dead man and a tepid story about what happened, Molly helps her hide the body without question. It is only later that Molly realizes she needs to find out the truth about what happened - and quickly, as her own life is now at stake.

We experience the story through both Ella and Molly’s POVs. I was immediately drawn to Molly, an older activist who is looking toward her future and finding it grim. Molly’s motivations are simple, she has beliefs and she stands for them, even at the risk of being arrested or assaulted. Ella is a much more complicated, murky character. As we glimpse flashbacks into these women’s lives, twists and turns are revealed. Ella’s storyline was at times confusing to follow, but the last few chapters made everything shockingly clear.

Thanks to Bloomsbury and Netgalley for an ARC.
Profile Image for Jenny.
184 reviews
December 1, 2019
This started off slow for me, it is told from the perspective of the two main characters and from the past and the present.
It turned out to be a very interesting and suspenceful story...lots of twists and turns.
Profile Image for Kate.
1,626 reviews322 followers
January 7, 2018
I've read everything Eva Dolan has written and they've been marvellous but this one is utterly outstanding, enormously clever and a masterclass in plotting and reader immersion! Surely a book of the year.
Profile Image for Laura Rash Wonderchick.
1,268 reviews142 followers
March 12, 2018
The first 3/4 of this book is slightly confusing told in reverse chronological order & super slowwwwww. The last 1/4 is faster paced & crazy good, ALMOST making up for the first part.
Profile Image for Sherrie.
394 reviews16 followers
January 8, 2022
An interesting read, an insight into the world of activists although quite slow. The alternate chapters about each woman, with Ella's story told in reverse was different and I hadn't really seen the twist at the end.
Profile Image for Kasa Cotugno.
2,353 reviews452 followers
March 14, 2018
Ian Rankin's blurb on the cover says it all: "...She's top drawer." Since Kate Atkinson and Denise Mina can't write fast enough for me, what a joy to discover Eva Dolan. This beautifully crafted twister has more substance and insight about what it means to live in London nowadays than many other takes on the same subject. And there's a mystery at the center that takes the entire book to unravel. In fact, more than one mysteries. The characters are nuanced, well drawn. Although the structure was a little off putting at first, once into the rhythm, it made sense. Alternating chapters move forward ( (date)NOW and in reverse ( (date) THEN). Well done.
Profile Image for Jean.
408 reviews52 followers
March 20, 2018
Ella Riordan is a community activist who became famous when she was beaten by police during a social protest. Now Ella is a squatter in a building where the owners are evicting tenants so they can convert it into luxury condos. On a night where all the tenants and other guests are on the building's rooftop for a party, Ella finds herself next to a dead body. Instead of calling the cops, Ella calls a fellow neighbor and activist, Molly. Ella tells her friend the unknown man just attacked her and it was an accident. Together the two women decide to hide the body. But soon after, Molly starts to see holes in Ella's story.

This story was told in alternating point of views between Ella and Molly. I also got confused because it was jumping between the past and the present. I thought the story was slow and boring. I actually started skimming the book but I don't think I missed much.

Thank you to NetGalley and Bloomsbury USA for supplying me a copy of Eva Dolan's "This is How it Ends" in exchange of an honest review.
Profile Image for Darinda.
8,157 reviews145 followers
February 22, 2018
Ella and Molly are activists. Ella is young and new to the activist community, whereas Molly is older and has been involved with the activist community for years. They are both living in a building that is evicting the tenants, and most tenants have already left. After a rooftop party, Molly receives a call from Ella to come help her. When Molly arrives, there is a dead man in Ella's apartment. Due to the women's backgrounds, they don't think the police will believe they're innocent, so they opt to dispose of his body and not report his death. As time progresses, mistrust grows between the two women.

This story is told from two points of view, Ella and Molly. The book starts with the defining event (i.e., the dead guy) between these two women, then Ella's story moves in reverse chronological order, while Molly's story moves forward with the present day. The alternating viewpoints were interesting, because this is the type of story where that works, but the time changes (past vs present) were sometimes confusing.

This was a quick read, but I wasn't really interested in the characters. I was never drawn into the story and fully immersed. The last half of the book was much more intriguing than the first half, and I did enjoy the twist at the end.

I received a copy of this book from Bloomsbury and Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.
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858 reviews13 followers
January 17, 2018
With thanks to the publisher for the copy received.
This Is How It Ends is the first standalone novel by Eva Dolan and it is pretty amazing. It is based around a group of friends who protest against government, property developers and anybody who they feel is doing harm. With the state of the country there is plenty to protest about but their current project is the demolition of a block of flats that will have a huge impact on the lives of it’s inhabitants. Many people protest from the comfort of their sofas, shouting at the TV but there are also those who are prepared to go one step further. A few of these are Molly, Ella and Carol.
Molly and Carol have been protesting for years, Ella is the new kid on the block. The daughter of a high-ranking police officer she has had a privileged life compared to the people she protests with and for. After a party at the condemned flats their lives change dramatically. And that is all I can say about the plot. The less you know the more you will enjoy the novel.
There are two narrators, Molly whose account moves forward into real-time, and Ella whose account starts in the present time but then goes backward. Molly is older than Ella, she feels protective towards her but is increasingly wary . There are other characters who feature quite heavily. Most of them have an outward image that doesn’t reflect their true personality.
It’s a very topical book to read. Nearly every time you watch the news you see what type of things protesters are prepared to fight. All the mistrust of the police, the government and the media is all evident in real life and in this novel. The big events that are mentioned in the novel, one of which meant more to me than the others made it real and showed that are always going to be battles that affect some personally.
The last few pages I couldn’t read quickly enough,with an increasing anxiety and heart rate. On finishing, I just sat gazing into space devastated over what I had read.
Eva Dolan, you have excelled yourself. This novel is one that makes you analyse what is happening around you. I will be very surprised if this book isn’t one of the best sellers of the year.
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