Cover Image: The Ends of the Earth

The Ends of the Earth

Pub Date:   |   Archive Date:

Member Reviews

would like to thank netgalley and the publisher for letting me read this book

mary stands everyday in the tube station with her sign...come home jim mainly she is ignored but on this particular day when the crowds are huge her voice is heard above the rest and she is videoed and days later when she finds out she is mortified

but from that video that is viewed by a large number of people a few hints of where jim might have been... could it really be that easy

this is more than a story of a missing person and the effects it has on the people left behind, it is the hot topic of the moment, mental health and also mens mental health 

its a touching story with highs and lows but it does what it sets out to do and that is to highlight mental health in this day and age
Was this review helpful?
A sad, uplifting and thought provoking read. How do you deal with the love of your life disappearing? The story entwined with the stories of other characters firmly puts men’s mental health at the top of the agenda.  Well written and highly recommended
Was this review helpful?
Every evening for the last seven years Mary has taken vigil at the train station, hoping one day her lost husband Jim will return.  He needs to know that she will always be there for him.  After an unexpected phone call Mary is unsettled, her world turned upside down.  Opening up to a stranger she finds an unlikely friend, and together they try to finally answer the question 'where is Jim?' 

I had no idea where this book was going to go for most of the way through.  I had several theories, changing as each new piece of information was revealed, but I never quite got it right. 

Mary was a great lead.  Although her life is on hold in parts, she's still a remarkable woman, managing to hold her own personal vigil and volunteer at a phone support line for those feeling lost or alone.  As we learn more about Mary as a younger woman you can see that person still shining through.  I loved that Abbie Greaves let's us see that, and shows us a woman who is heartbroken and trying to be there for her husband, rather than a woman who has fallen apart on her own.   

The timeline hopping worked well for me, I think you need to see how Mary and Jim's relationship grew for you to empathise with her, and for you to care about either of them.  This is the key to piecing the story together bit by bit too.  It's not a book that I would class as a page turner as such, but it is one where each new piece of information makes you reassess what you think you knew.  

Potential spoiler ahead:
As a book taking a look at mental health and the impact that those issues can have, not just on the person suffering but on those around them too the book does a good job.  We're hearing more and more about how we can support people with mental health issues, but how you support those that are supporting someone else is something that isn't always considered. 

I enjoyed reading this, and I though the ending was a really nice way to round it out.  I do like a book that doesn't necessarily bow to the pressure of the happy ending, and being able to do that and still finish on a positive note is a win.
Was this review helpful?
Mary O'Connor has been keeping a vigil for her first love for the last seven years. Every morning without fail, Mary arrives at Ealing Broadway Station and sets herself up among the commuters, in her hands Mary holds a sign which bears the words "Come Home Jim".

Mary stands at the exit of the train station with her sign, she has done this every day for the last seven years. A chance comment has made her an internet sensation. Local journalist, Alice who is in need of a front page story attempts to find out what has happened to Jim. Jim had been Mary's beau. The story covers: men's mental health problems, heartbreak and a missing person. The story flips back and forth between the present day and the past. This is quite a sad story to read. It's well written with some lovely characters. This book made a nice change from the books I normally read.

I would like to thank #NetGalley, #RandomHouseUK, Cornerstone and the author #AbbieGreaves for my ARC of #TheEndsOfTheEarth in exchange for an honest review
Was this review helpful?
Mary is trapped in a cycle of questions and grief as her boyfriend disappeared 7 years ago. She exists now rather than lives as she searches for Jim and for answers.

I don't always like a book with time shifts, but this one works really well.

The introduction of characters throughout the book who each bring something to the story is beautifully crafted and the conclusion is a slow creep crescendo to end. I was keen to keep reading and find out the end to Mary and Jim's story and felt a real connection to the characters.

I loved this book ❤

Thanks to Netgalley and Random House for the ARC of this book
Was this review helpful?
This was a lovely read, it was a little sad and a lot happy too. It was such a refreshing book to read and made a change from my usual genre. I throughly enjoyed this book and was sorry to finish it. My thanks to Netgalley and the publishers for giving me the opportunity to read this book in return for an honest review.
Was this review helpful?
The Ends of the Earth by Abbie Greaves hooked me in with the Belfast setting and the Stormont hotel which I know so well. Mary was easy to like and admire and her love story with Jim was a delight to follow. The darkness in the story was somewhat unexpected from such a positive beginning but what a great insight into depression and its destructive force on all around it. Mary’s vigil and Alice’s subsequent quest was well executed by Abbie. The Nightline volunteers were well brought to life and very engaging with their strengths and personal struggles. Mary did seem to draw kindness to her. Olive, Ted, and Kit are all clearly fond of her and protective of her too. Their enduring concern is touching and Mary is aware of it. This was a sad story but with kindness and Hope interwoven. A four star read
Was this review helpful?
Oh how I loved this book, it was a real page turner. Why then not 5 stars? Because I’m so frustrated! What did Mary say before she left for Mams birthday? What was going on at Jim’s work?  Perhaps that’s the art of good story telling. To leave the reader wanting more, needing answers.
Was this review helpful?
This started off well but I did start to lose patience with the character of Mary by the end. Seven years is a ling time to ignore a major truth, no matter how unpalatable and it all seemed a little silly. Alice and Kit were much more interesting than Mary and Jim, and I would have liked more about them both. It was well written and neatly packaged but not quite for me.
Was this review helpful?
Abbie Greaves gives us a book that touches on lots of emotional subjects.  It's a love story and so much more! Jim, the love of Mary's life, went missing 7 years ago and since then she's been at Ealing station every evening with her cardboard "Come Home Jim" sign.  Told in dual timelines this often heart-string tugging story deals with love, loss, grief, mental health issues and the value of friends and friendship.  I enjoyed this well written book and think it would make an excellent choice for a book club read giving rise to plenty of topics for discussion.  Having also read and enjoyed Abbie's first book "The Silent Treatment" I look forward to many more.
Thanks to Netgalley, the author and the publisher for an arc of this book.
Was this review helpful?
Mary holds a vigil at Ealing station every day, holding a sign 'Jim come home'. She has held the sign, without fail, for seven years. Jim was her partner, her soul-mate, and she was his 'Safe place'. Jim has disappeared, without trace, him Mary's life has been put on hold....What if someone finds him though? 'Without the crushing lows how can the soaring highs mean anything at all'..
A  tale about love and Mens mental health .
Was this review helpful?
I enjoyed this book - I like that it didn't go where I expected it to, and I thought that it was quite a realistic portrayal of not being able to let someone go. I think anyone who like The Silent Treatment will love this!
Was this review helpful?
A heartfelt story about love, loss, mental health and moving on. I think the characters were lovely and relatable and I enjoyed reading about them.
Was this review helpful?
Mary has been keeping a vigil every evening for seven years outside of Ealing Station, she stands in the same spot holding a sign which simply states “Come Home Jim”. The Ends of the Earth by Abbie Greaves follows Mary as she is finally forced to address what actually happened to Jim and finds the strength she needs to come to terms with his disappearance. The story is told through a dual timeline, one in the present day and the other from the beginning of Mary and Jim’s relationship, which was well managed and revealed the story steadily until its conclusion. At a first glance, their relationship was perfect, they were blissfully happy and there seems to be no reason as to why Jim disappeared years ago. But as with all relationships there can be a lot more complexity than first appears to an outsider and sometimes to those within as well which Mary begins to realise. 

Having yet to read Abbie Greaves debut novel, I fully expected this to be an entertaining, light-hearted romance novel, but I was surprised and pleased to discover that it has a lot of depth to the characters and their situations. Most importantly, this story addresses some sensitive issues as well the importance of raising awareness of men’s mental health which I’m sure will identify with many readers. Overall, I really enjoyed this book, but not for the reasons I had initially expected. It has been beautifully written and it carries a strong message of hope, acceptance and forgiveness in both ourselves and those we love.
Was this review helpful?

Mary O’Connor has been keeping a vigil for her first love for the past seven years.

Every evening without fail, Mary arrives at Ealing Broadway station and sets herself up among the commuters. In her hands Mary holds a sign which bears the words: ‘Come Home Jim.’ 

Call her mad, call her a nuisance, call her a drain on society – Mary isn’t going anywhere. 

That is, until an unexpected call turns her world on its head. In spite of all her efforts, Mary can no longer find the strength to hold herself together. She must finally face what happened all those years ago, and answer the question – where on earth is Jim?

My Thoughts

Having not read Greaves’ debut novel, I went into her latest – The Ends of the Earth– pretty blind.

Greaves creates characters- particularly in Mary and Jim – who appear to be one thing one the outside but, when you truly get into their characters, you realise (as the characters themselves do) that there is so much more to them. Mary is beautiful, caring and ambitious but – in the present day – she is tortured the unknown fate of her first love, Jim, and lets the public know through a heart wrenching nightly vigil. Jim, similarly, is known as beautiful, loving and successful but he has feelings he just can’t shake.

I could easily have read the story of Mary or of Jim but the sickly sweet, slightly cliche first meeting and subsequent love story between them was a captivating read. I can read slow burn romances but I think nothing appeals to me more than a romance that is quick, allowing the reader to truly observe the romance without much time to digest other stuff. My heart soared when they shared their first meeting and I loved the softer, private moments between them. I also really appreciated how, through more serious topics like alcohol issues and loss, Greaves illustrated obstacles and changes in a relationship and this allows us to see a different side to characters we think we know.

As much as this book is about Mary, it’s also about the people that help her find Jim – from Alice, an aspiring journalist whose job is at stake, to her colleagues at Nightline. I initially assumed this story would only follow one character but – whilst I was more interested in Mary’s side of the narrative – The Ends of the Earth follows a community of people racing to help one woman, which isn’t something you read (or see) every day.

My only problem with this book was the fact that it felt a little bit anticlimactic, as you spend half of the book trying to answer the question where is Jim and why won’t he come home, then – when everything is pieced together – I don’t think you get the resolution you might expect, even though the ending was a lot more hopeful than I expected.

Regardless, The Ends of the Earth is a captivating contemporary novel about first love, male mental health and people coming together.
Was this review helpful?
Mary and Jim meet at a wedding and fall in love. 6 years later Jim goes missing and Mary spends every night at the tube station with a sign waiting for him to come home. 
The story follows Mary and the people she comes into contact with as they try to find Jim. 
Really brilliant book which I read in one day!
Was this review helpful?
Mary and Jim have been together for six years. they have had their ups and downs but when Mary returns from a night away with her Mam, Jim has disappeared. 
No-one knows where he has gone and for seven years Mary stands outside Ealing station with sign '" come home Jim" but he doesn't. 
By day Mary works at a supermarket and after her stint at the station she works taking calls from people who need to talk. Then she receives a call which will change her life.
Was this review helpful?
This is a tale of May and Jim who seem to be perfect for each other. It was a good storyline but at times sad. I enjoyed reading the book which was set in two different timelines and touches a great deal on friendships and difficulties therein. It some aspects the story was a little far fetched but it’s touching on mental health was a good idea. The ending- I leave you to decide. Thanks to NetGalley for ARC.
Was this review helpful?
This book was not what I expected when I started it and I am left with a sense of wonder! Whose story was this in the end? Mary, the abandoned girlfriend who has held a vigil every night for 7 years in the hope that her missing boyfriend, Jim, would return to her loving arms? Or was is Jim's story - a man missing for a good proportion of the book. He is a captivating character who seemed to live life in the moment - so why would he simply disappear? Would he ever be found alive? Would he return? Could he return? And then there was the unexpected story of Alice who is secretly investigating Jim's disappearance and the disarming character of Kit...

So many characters had a story to tell and troubles that they hid and avoided confronting. I'm not sure that even by the end I ever really knew any of them, really. But then in life do we ever really know each other? Even those closest to you may hide deep secrets and doubts. Mary is so many things to so many different people: her Ma, Jim, his parents, her co-workers at Nightline, even to herself she does not seem to be true!

I loved this book and will return to those characters and their hidden 'selves' time and time again. I do feel that Alice's arrival at Nightline and her subsequent investigations were a little forced and sudden - perhaps they needed a little more backstory or fleshing out, so as to not to make her new co-workers more suspicious of her motives. However, this is a minor gripe in a wonderful piece of story-telling.
Was this review helpful?
I was really looking forward to reading this book. It held my interest to begin with but then I found it rather slow going and just couldn't connect with the characters.
Was this review helpful?