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A long way down

This novel is written by the British author Nick Hornby. Four strangers meet on New Year's
Eve when they all chosen to commit suicide from the same building roof in London. Martin,
Jess, Maureen and JJ come from very different backgrounds and they live very different lives,
but they all have made the decision to kill themselves. Meeting each other interrupts their
plans and the four form a sort of pact that keeps them alive and helps them to overcome their
mental issues.
First, readers meet Martin, a TV show host who was arrested for sleeping with a 15-year-old
girl. He was not aware that she was just fifteen years old at the time. Having lost his wife,
children and job in the scandal, Martin feels there is little left to live for.
Maureen interrupts Martin's attempt to jump when she asks to borrow his ladder. Maureen is a
single mother of her disabled son. Her son has been unable to communicate or care for
himself since he was born. Maureen love him very much but has become so isolated because
of caring for him that she sunk into a deep depression.
Next comes JJ. The reasons he wants to kill himself stem from the breakup of his band and his
relationship with his girlfriend Lizzie. JJ is embarrassed about his seemingly inconsequential
reasons for suicide, so he tells the group that he has uncurable cancer.
And then there is Jess. She is a drug-addicted and troubled teenager. Her sister went missing
about a year before. Jess claims to be on the roof because her boyfriend abandoned her.
What gets them off the roof is Jess. She convinces the other three to go with her to a party to
confront her ex-boyfriend, who turns out to be just a one-night stand. After the confrontation
is done, they all go back to Martin's place. Over the next year, the group meets on a regular
basis, telling each other their life stories and arguing with each other. However, the interaction
keeps them all interacting with the world, and helps them to start a healing process. At one
point, they decide to go on vacation together. It turns out to be a disastrous adventure. But
they get through the year alive. One moment that reinforces their belief that they are not truly
suicidal is when they return to the roof to celebrate the anniversary of when they met. While
they are there, they see a man about to jump, and try to make him to reconsider. The man
barely registers them and goes through with his own suicide.
Hornby uses multiple viewpoints in this novel, he tells each chapter from a different
character's perspective and in that character's voice, to better make you understand the
psychological inner dialogue that exists when life seems hard.
I enjoyed this book and would recommend it to people who likes to read. I don’t really read
books, but I stilled enjoyed the story. And I see that the story is relevant today, because there
is a lot of suicides today.