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John Dies at the End by David Wong
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John Dies at the End (edition 2007)

by David Wong

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1,674904,276 (3.84)77
Member:ajhackwith
Title:John Dies at the End
Authors:David Wong
Info:Permuted Press (2007), Paperback, 376 pages
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John Dies at the End by David Wong

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» See also 77 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 89 (next | show all)
I loved this book, obviously. It was one of the few books in a long time that has actually scared me.

It is a surreal trip of a story that will have you asking what the hell is going on every few pages. Stick with it. It mostly gets explained. The story just barrells you along, until all of a sudden it's 3am and you can't remember what you just read. Which is the exact right mindset for readin this (and the sequel, This Book is Full of Spiders)

The voice of the narrator is original and feels so real. Upon a re-reading, the book is even more scary and actually sad. You really feel for the narrator and the other characters.

Hop on the JDATE bandwagon, you won't regret it. ( )
  A.E.Wasp | Apr 20, 2016 |
Peter Berkrot
  jmail | Mar 21, 2016 |
John Dies at the End is the story of David and John. Two idiots. They take some drugs which make them transcend time and space and become privy to a world of supernatural horror.

I feel like John Dies in the End is a book that had a lot of potential at the outset and lived up to almost none of it. It moved from incredibly subtle corner-of-your eye horror to a big bad who is actually an alien overlord working through an organic supercomputer with the intelligence level and sense of humor of the kind of 13 year old boy who gives the gaming community a bad name. If you think that an evil overlord who changed the lyrics of the songs on the car radio to be explicitly racist is something you're interested in then have I got a book for you. It also relies heavily on gross-out horror and over the top violence, neither of which are my thing.

On top of that, the women in this novel are paper thin and disposable. The love interest for the first part of the novel is described mostly as a pair of walking breasts and when she's gone he mostly misses the sex they aren't having. There are some other side girls he'd like to bone but can't and then there's this quirky girl who he thought was retarded (the book's word, not mine) but is actually just quirky and waiting for extreme fear to make her emotionally dependent on a man she's known for, like, a day. She then becomes the damsel in distress/quest object and she must be protected at all costs. Because there's no way a woman could hold her own. No way. Two high school drop stoners, totally. Because they have dicks. But not a GIRL! Eugh!

I was mostly disappointed as the start was pretty promising but it escalated into something I'd expect to be written as a high school project by someone with the username fux_u_lm3_fagz only with better spelling and grammar. ( )
1 vote TPauSilver | Mar 21, 2016 |
My take: 3.5 stars
This is the weirdest, craziest, oddest book I have ever read. And that's saying a lot. It is weird, yes, but oh so entertaining.

Warning: Do not read this if you are at all offended by the "F" word, kittens being kicked and dogs being blown up, penis envy and adoration, or gratuitous blood and gore.

However, if you can breeze past these things, you are in for one wild ride.

John and David are modern day heroes. They are borderline slacker-college-drop-out-losers, but step up to the plate when they see that their way of life, heck-probably the very planet, is in danger. Armed with a drug called "soy sauce" and very little fear, they jump with both feet into saving the world.

At 658 pages as an iBook, but was about 200 pages too long for me, but to persist is to benefit from a crazy, made-up ending and a taste for the sequel. This has been made into a movie, set to release in January 2013. I don't know how they made this into a movie, but I thought that about "Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy", too. Like that one, I will probably skip it on the big screen in favor of the images in my head. The book is always better.

Recommended. ( )
  CarmenMilligan | Jan 18, 2016 |
This is hard to rate. There were moments when I laughed out loud, and other points where I struggled to keep turning the pages. The action felt nonsensical, like it was written with a random-word generator. Like(my words, not his), "we ran into a room, and there were huge bat-things flying around. They had snake-like heads. They opened their mouths, and eggplants fell out. The eggplants turned into turtles with six feet..." It's all fun for a paragraph or so, but brutal when it goes on for pages and pages. Like listening to a kid describe his dream for two hours.

However, points to Wong for coming up with a way to counter all accusations of plot holes: "Oh, that was an alternate timeline." There were some loose threads left hanging that really bothered me, but, hey, alternate timeline, what're you gonna do?

The concepts of time and space were both fascinating and horrifying. And he created two great characters. No matter what happened, I found John and Dave to be completely appealing. They'd come up with these terrible plans, and they'd fail horribly and hilariously. (Needs to work on his female characters, though, as I found myself thinking of them as Girlfriend A and Girlfriend B.)

It was a mixed bag, but it's rare to find a book this bizarre. I'm willing to forgive a lot when I'm getting something that celebrates weirdness. I can feel the vibe of "I wrote this for fun, and I'm not overly concerned with what other people think of it." If the alternative is over-processed story product, then I'd rather listen to some kid's crazy dream.

Favorite quotes:

Page 10 (hardcover):
I reached for the knob. At the same moment it began to melt and transform, turning pink and finally taking the shape of a flaccid penis. It flopped softly against the door, like a man was cramming it through the knob hole from the other side.

I turned back to John and said, "That door cannot be opened."

Page 128:
The beast was batted away by a folding chair, wielded by John.

He screamed "YEAH!" in a dead-on impersonation of pro wrestler "Macho Man" Randy Savage, grasping the folded chair by two legs. He swung again and flattened another of the beasts, screaming, "Have a seat, bitch!"


P. 134:
Folding chairs were flying through the air as if propelled by dozens of invisible Bobby Knights.

P. 333:
And with that, everything snapped into place for me. All the pieces of the puzzle. If you figured it out before now, well, go win a Nobel Prize, Mr. Genius. ( )
  Malora | Jan 18, 2016 |
Showing 1-5 of 89 (next | show all)
JDATE is the rare genre novel that manages to keep its sense of humor strong without ever diminishing the scares; David is a consistently hilarious narrator whose one-liners and running commentary are sincere in a way that makes the horrors he confronts even more unsettling. Plot-wise, for a good two-thirds of the book, it seems like Wong is more interested in piling on weirder and weirder threats than fitting the pieces together, and while his invention never flags, the accumulation of horrors eventually threatens to turn the narrative into a breathless series of “And then?”s. Still, the tone and white-knuckle pacing cover up a lot of sins, and Wong manages to pull everything together for a finale that’s both stomach-churningly freaky and oddly moving. It’s the sort of thing that leaves readers breathless and nauseous, but surprisingly hungry for more.
 

» Add other authors (2 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
David Wongprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Arnold, RichDesignersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Grom, RobCover designersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Spear, GeoffCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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First words
Solving the following riddle will reveal the awful secret behind the universe, assuming you do not go utterly mad in the attempt.
Quotations
Something coming back from the dead was almost always bad news. Movies taught me that. For every one Jesus you get a million zombies.
Let's say you have an ax. Just a cheap one, from Home Depot. On one bitter winter day, you use said ax to behead a man. Don't worry, the man was already dead. Or maybe you should worry, because you're the one who shot him.
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Book description
STOP.You should not have touched this book with your bare hands.NO, don’t put it down. It’s too late.They’re watching you.My name is David Wong. My best friend is John. Those names are fake. You might want to change yours.You may not want to know about the things you’ll read on these pages, about the sauce, about Korrok, about the invasion, and the future. But it’s too late. You touched the book. You’re in the game. You’re under the eye.The only defense is knowledge. You need to read this book, to the end. Even the part with the bratwurst. Why? You just have to trust me. The important thing is this:The drug is called Soy Sauce and it gives users a window into another dimension. John and I never had the chance to say no. You still do.Unfortunately for us, if you make the right choice, we’ll have a much harder time explaining how to fight off the otherworldly invasion currently threatening to enslave humanity.I’m sorry to have involved you in this, I really am. But as you read about these terrible events and the very dark epoch the world is about to enter as a result, it is crucial you keep one thing in mind: None of this is was my fault.

In this reissue of an Internet phenomenon originally slapped between two covers in 2007 by indie Permutus Press, Wong—Cracked.com editor Jason Pargin's alter ego—adroitly spoofs the horror genre while simultaneously offering up a genuinely horrifying story. The terror is rooted in a substance known as “soy sauce,” a paranormal psychoactive that opens video store clerk Wong's—and his penis-obsessed friend John's—minds to higher levels of consciousness. Or is it just hell seeping into the unnamed Midwestern town where Wong and the others live? Meat monsters, wig-wearing scorpion aberrations and wingless white flies that burrow into human skin threaten to kill Wong and his crew before infesting the rest of the world. A multidimensional plot unfolds as the unlikely heroes drink lots of beer and battle the paradoxes of time and space, as well as the clichés of first-person-shooter video games and fantasy gore films. Sure to please the Fangoria set while appealing to a wider audience, the book's smart take on fear manages to tap into readers' existential dread on one page, then have them laughing the next. 

David Wong is the pseudonym of Jason Pargin, online humorist, National Lampoon contributor, and editor-in-chief of Cracked.com.
Haiku summary

Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0312659148, Paperback)

NOW A MAJOR MOTION PICTURE

STOP.

You should not have touched this book with your bare hands.

NO, don’t put it down. It’s too late.

They’re watching you.

My name is David Wong. My best friend is John. Those names are fake. You might want to change yours.

You may not want to know about the things you’ll read on these pages, about the sauce, about Korrok, about the invasion, and the future. But it’s too late. You touched the book. You’re in the game. You’re under the eye.

The only defense is knowledge. You need to read this book, to the end. Even the part with the bratwurst. Why? You just have to trust me.

 

The important thing is this:

The drug is called Soy Sauce and it gives users a window into another dimension. 

John and I never had the chance to say no. 

You still do.

Unfortunately for us, if you make the right choice, we’ll have a much harder time explaining how to fight off the otherworldly invasion currently threatening to enslave humanity.

            I’m sorry to have involved you in this, I really am. But as you read about these terrible events and the very dark epoch the world is about to enter as a result, it is crucial you keep one thing in mind:

 

None of this is was my fault.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:19:28 -0400)

(see all 6 descriptions)

This may be the story of John and David, a drug called soy sauce, and other-worldly beings invading the planet. Or, it may be the story of two beer-drinking friends who live in an unnamed Midwestern town and only think something horrific is going on. But the important thing is, according to the narrator, "None of this is my fault.".… (more)

(summary from another edition)

» see all 5 descriptions

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