Release Date: May 7, 2013
Source: Publisher (Edelweiss)
Goodreads Stars: 1
Seventeen-year-old Michael and his five-year-old brother, Patrick, have been battling monsters in The Game for weeks.
In the rural mountains of West Virginia, armed with only their rifle and their love for each other, the brothers follow Instructions from the mysterious Game Master. They spend their days searching for survivors, their nights fighting endless hordes of “Bellows”—creatures that roam the dark, roaring for flesh. And at this Game, Michael and Patrick are very good.
But The Game is changing.
The Bellows are evolving.
The Game Master is leading Michael and Patrick to other survivors—survivors who don’t play by the rules.
And the brothers will never be the same. - Goodreads
Michael awoke in the dark to the screams again.
---I have absolutely nothing good to say about The End Games, so if you're a fan of this novel then I suggest you turn back now if you think you're going to be offended. I went into this novel expected to adore these two brothers while they helped each other survive the zombie apocalypse. You all know how I love my sibling relationships. But after finishing this book, I just feel underwhelmed and rather empty.
My main issue with this book is the writing style, because I think that it affected other aspects of the novel as well. The writing was just so choppy. There is no other way to describe it. I was getting confused as to what was happening in a scene, and I had to keep rereading entire paragraphs (as if I don't do that anyway, ha) to try to make sense of them. It was too much work.
As well as the writing style in general, the older brother's thoughts were so, so weird. After a chapter or two, I was wondering whether or not Michael had a learning disability, but it wasn't - as far as I am aware - mentioned or covered at all, so I don't know what to think. If he did have a learning disability, that would have been great because I do think more YA novels need to have more of those main characters, but since it wasn't talked about I'm going with Michael just being weird and Martin's writing style absolutely failing.
Michael came across as so immature, which isn't something I expected in a survival/post-apocalyptic novel. This is the guy who has to look after his little brother, for god's sake. Normally a sibling relationship would have my heart fluttering, but this one was just dull. I didn't feel any connection to Michael nor Patrick, and I found myself falling asleep during their interactions with each other.
There's a slight twist about 20% of the way through, which I think was meant to be shocking or surprising. But it wasn't. I thought it was common knowledge from the very beginning, but I guess not.
Due to the poor writing style, I ended up skipping the last 65%. I regret nothing. There is no way I could have sat through the rest of this book, because it was boring me to tears and I wanted to grab my red pen and write all over the page. Except, of course, the page would have been my Kindle and that would not have been good.
Do I recommend The End Games? In case it wasn't obvious: no. No, I do not.