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Other Novels To Discuss > I Am The Messenger ****MAJOR SPOILERS****

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message 1: by Laura (last edited Feb 01, 2009 09:23AM) (new)

Laura (apenandzen) ********************SPOILERS*************************


I started this thread for anyone who wants to discuss the ENDING of this book. What did you think? Did you love the ending? Hate it? Did anything about the ending confuse you? Were there loose ends that you felt should have been wrapped up more cleanly?

I have to get offline at the moment, but I'll check back in with my own response later.

message 2: by Becky (new)

Becky (beckyofthe19and9) I know a lot of people who absolutely hated the ending, and felt like it was a cop out (much like people thought that the end to The Stand was one), but I had no problem with it, surprisingly.

Maybe that's because I'd read The Book Thief first and had a little time to get used to his way of making everything happen for a reason, and that there is someone who, maybe isn't planning events, but at least has a hand in them and knows what will occur.

Oddly enough, I don't myself necessarily believe in God as an almighty, all-knowing, creator of the universe, manipulator of lives, etc. My own views are much different than that, so I was pretty surprised when the Deus Ex Machina ending didn't bother me.

Then there are the people who were upset by Zusak putting himself in the role of Ed's "God". This didn't bother me either. It makes perfect sense. Zusak created Ed, his friends, his world, the situation, all of the tasks, etc, so why SHOULDN'T he be the "God" of their creation? In my opinion, Zusak's assumption is what bothers people, and mainly only those who think that there is One True God, and that stepping into those shoes even in a fictional work is blasphemy.

Sorry for the rant... I hope all of that makes sense!

message 3: by Laura (new)

Laura (apenandzen) OK so wait....I can be really dense sometimes.

The guy at the end who told him the whole story is supposed to be the author? Wow I really missed that, but that sure adds stars to the ending.

Am I understanding you right Becky?

message 4: by Becky (new)

Becky (beckyofthe19and9) That's how I interpreted the ending, yes.

message 5: by Laura (new)

Laura (apenandzen) OK I'm gonna reread that section. Thanks Becky! I'm actually liking the ending alot more if that's what the deal is!

message 6: by Becky (new)

Becky (beckyofthe19and9) Sure, anytime! By the way, I'd love to know what your original feelings were regarding the ending. :)

message 7: by Laura (new)

Laura (apenandzen) Becky! Thank you so much ! That's exactly what it means! Now I love the book even more !!!

And I can't stop writing with exclamation points !!!!


Thank God for TNBBC!


message 8: by Becky (new)

Becky (beckyofthe19and9) You're welcome! I'm glad that you enjoy the book more now than you did... I love it when people love books that I love!

message 9: by Laura (new)

Laura (apenandzen) To be honest, it was sort of a puzzle to me. I thought I would have to put the book down for awhile then come back to it, and see if I could sort it out. I just finished it yesterday. Then we got talking about this Outlander book and we were supposed to start this weekend, so I picked up Outlander and haven't given this one another thought until just now when you added your post.

I'm sure you are right though. Absolutely. And the photograph at the very end of the book makes it so clear! I can't believe I didn't see it at first!

message 10: by Becky (new)

Becky (beckyofthe19and9) Gotcha... :)

message 11: by Heather (new)

Heather Hi! Thanks for starting this thread Laura. I'm one of those who felt like Zusak didn't know how to end the book when I first read it. So, yeah, I guess I felt like he copped out on it. The idea the Zusak placed himself as God doesn't bother me. Unfortunately, I don't have the book with me at the moment, but as soon as I get it back I'm going to re-evaluate the ending. Becky, I think you have great ideas about the ending!

message 12: by Laura (new)

Laura (apenandzen) When you re-read it, Heather, and then look at the final photo of the author toward the very end of the book - it all comes together. Brilliant!

message 13: by Becky (new)

Becky (beckyofthe19and9) Thank you Heather!

message 14: by Heather (new)

Heather Okay, so the whole ending thing has been driving me nuts all day. So I went to Borders and bought a new copy of I am the Messenger just to satisfy this curiosity. I also realized I may never see my other copy again (a student borrowed it who then promptly got expelled from school). I, of course, immediately looked at the photo of Zusak and saw the running shoes and the folder. HeeHee. Saw it before but it didn't register with me at the time. I'll actually re-read the ending in a day or so. I just feel better now the book is back in my hands.

Did either of you ever watch Star Trek The Next Generation? Zusak looks like the kid who played Wesley on the show.

message 15: by Laura (new)

Laura (apenandzen) I've never been a trekkie Heather. He's a good looking man that Zusak! I'd like to own a copy of this one too, so I can loan it out to people. And reread it one day.

message 16: by Becky (new)

Becky (beckyofthe19and9) OK... I don't really recall the picture you guys are talking about, but I'm guessing it's the authors photo on the inside. (I had this in hardcover and I hate reading hardcovers with the jacket on, so I always remove it. And then I gave the book to my mom, so I can't even see it!) I just figured that the "guy" explaining everything to Ed was the author. Now I'm curious!

message 17: by Laura (new)

Laura (apenandzen) It's actually not on the flap, it's one of the last pages of the book. Which makes sense, considering what we're supposed to infer for the ending!

message 18: by Laura (new)

Laura (apenandzen) Oh and BTW the picture of him is terrific. I actually have a teeny little crush on him.


message 19: by Becky (new)

Becky (beckyofthe19and9) I will have to check that out when I go to my mom's next... I don't remember the picture at all!

message 20: by Becky (new)

Becky (beckyofthe19and9) He is a good-looking guy... ;)

message 21: by Laura (new)

Laura (apenandzen) Umm...yeah. Love his smile. I would really really like to meet him - in all seriousness. Because I think his point in this book (and that's why I love the ending even more) is to encourage people to care. Really. Just care. Notice when people need something, and take some kind of action. I'd love to write a YA book - they need more of this kind of reading material, IMO - inspirational.

message 22: by Becky (new)

Becky (beckyofthe19and9) It is... It proves that we don't have to be rich to help others.

I really think that my favorite of his tasks was reading to the elderly lady. That part made me cry when I read it because I just kept thinking of how lonely she must be, waiting for her husband and never remembering that he'll never come. :(

message 23: by Laura (new)

Laura (apenandzen) I loved everything he did, but yeah that one was nice. I wish that someone would give me a list like that of people to help and I would know going in that they would welcome the help. You know how sometimes you want to help someone, but you don't know if they would be suspicious if you did. Like - why are they doing this? what do they want from me? that kind of thing. It would be cool.

I love this book!

message 24: by Melissa (last edited Feb 23, 2009 03:32PM) (new)

Melissa (melissamarilyn) First of all I'd just like to say I absolutely loved it, and I think I have a bit of a crush on Zusak. He's amazing. Hah.

The ending certainly confused me as I was reading (and immediately after), but (like someone above), I came to interpret it as his life was all written by an author (essentially: God)...which makes sense, and is really quite clever. However, I kind of liked the first conclusion Ed came to, that his father had planned it all before his death, and basically orchestrated the whole thing from "beyond the grave". Though it's not quite as interesting an ending, I liked it, maybe better than the actual ending. Did anyone else?

message 25: by Laura (new)

Laura (apenandzen) I like the ending as Becky interpreted it. I guess the dad one has some merit too, but ... I just wanted to add I think I have a crush on him too! He is awesome. This book made me fall crazy for him. I just love the whole premise of it, and I think esp. since it is directed at teens, to stir up feelings of what it would be like to be directed out into the world to help just makes me smile. I so wish I would get a card in the mail, and lists of names.

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