Monday, December 6, 2010

The End of Marking Time by C.J. West

Michael O'Connor left home at the young age of fifteen when his momma held a gun to his head.  A survivor, he made his living on the streets.  He became a professional of robbing houses and cars and made some unsavory friends, but did manage to keep himself out of a gang.  He lived reasonably and if he ran low of funds, he just robbed someone.  But one day, Michael's luck ran out.  After a successful robbery of a district attorney, Michael is laying low, but one of his contacts needs some quick cash.  Michael gives him an unused credit card and soon finds himself in cuffs.

The court finds against Michael and he is sentenced to five years in the state prison.  On the bus to the big house, a shooting occurs and Michael is shot.  When he wakes up, it is four years later.  He had been in a coma that whole time. And while he was in a coma, his world as he knew it changed.  The government let all of the criminals go free.  They thought it inhuman to keep them caged.  But, they had to learn by new rules.  Michael doesn't know those rules but he is about to learn them the hard way.

Wendell Cummings prides himself on his rehabilitation system.  80% of the criminals that graduate from his system are upstanding citizens.  He is determined to re-learn Michael so he can join society once again.  Michael wears an ankle strap that warns the public that he is a relearner, and is also bound to the house much of his day.  If he doesn't sit in front of the black box with all of it's dvd's, he won't graduate to the next level of his relearning.  But Michael wants to know what's going on out in the real world and makes some poor choices.  When Michael gets in trouble, Wendell gets in trouble.  But eventually, Michael wants to help himself to help Wendell, but the price might just be too high.

The End of Marking Time is a hypnotizing novel.  It has such a unique plot line that I couldn't put it down.  Granted, I really hated the ending, but if an author can raise any emotion out of a reader, it is high marks.  The End of Marking Time really makes you think, long after the book is finished.  Every action has a consequence and a domino effect and C.J. West takes it to the whole next level.  Absolutely riveting!!


  1. Wendy,

    I'm so glad you enjoyed The End of Marking Time. Thanks for such a thoughtful review. The ending is one of those things that people either love or hate. Still, I'm glad it had you thinking.


  2. Hi! I found your blog through Follow Me Wednesday. I am now following you. :)


The old grey donkey, Eeyore stood by himself in a thistly corner of the Forest, his front feet well apart, his head on one side, and thought about things. Sometimes he thought sadly to himself, "Why?" and sometimes he thought, "Wherefore?" and sometimes he thought, "Inasmuch as which?" and sometimes he didn't quite know what he was thinking about.

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