The year is 2019 and a cure for aging has been discovered. After much political and cultural debate "The Cure" is made available to populations worldwide. Through fast-paced journal entries and blogger-style news story roundups compiled by an ever-watchful New York lawyer, John Farrell, readers experience a world where age-related diseases and deaths disappear altogether. But there are residual effects and THE POSTMORTAL forces us to rethink our idea of marriage if rendered indefinite and the allocation of precious resources in a world with exponential population growth. Ideological divisions manifest themselves in chilling ways in this new environment, introducing "pro death" anarchists who inflict ghastly punishments on those who dare to remain young. With the apocalypse on the horizon and regret creeping into everyday lives, living forever, as it turns out, isn't all it's cracked up to be.
The Postmortal is a powerful book. Magary takes an honest look at society's reaction to not aging - constant partying, marriages fall apart, the earth's resources are dwindling. We see John Farrell, a wise-cracking lawyer, who's life changes markedly throughout the book as he gets older without aging. His optimism turns to skepticism, even on to hopelessness. The storyline is very dark in this book, but Magary manages to add humor and lighten the mood in just the right places.
It's an interesting novel, showing how society slowly disintegrates just as it is granted one of its biggest wishes. The government begins to take total control of everyone's life...and death. This story really makes you think, even as you're being entertained.
Publisher: Penguin (August 30, 2011)