Everyone In This Room Will Soon Be Dead

“Hilarious, relatable, exasperating, and endearing. For all readers of fiction.” —Library Journal

This hilarious and profound debut for fans of Mostly Dead Things and Goodbye, Vitamin, follows a morbidly anxious young woman—“the kindhearted heroine we all need right now” (Courtney Maum, New York Times bestselling author)—who stumbles into a job as a receptionist at a Catholic church and becomes obsessed with her predecessor’s mysterious death.

Gilda, a twenty-something, atheist, animal-loving lesbian, cannot stop ruminating about death. Desperate for relief from her panicky mind and alienated from her repressive family, she responds to a flyer for free therapy at a local Catholic church and finds herself being greeted by Father Jeff, who assumes she’s there for a job interview. Too embarrassed to correct him, Gilda is abruptly hired to replace the recently deceased receptionist Grace.

In between trying to memorize the lines to Catholic mass, hiding the fact that she has a new girlfriend, and erecting a dirty dish tower in her crumbling apartment, Gilda strikes up an email correspondence with Grace’s old friend. She can’t bear to ignore the kindly old woman, who has been trying to reach her friend through the church inbox, but she also can’t bring herself to break the bad news. Desperate, she begins impersonating Grace via email. But when the police discover suspicious circumstances surrounding Grace’s death, Gilda may have to finally reveal the truth of her mortifying existence.

A delightful blend of warmth, deadpan humour, and pitch-perfect observations about the human condition, Everyone in This Room Will Someday Be Dead is a crackling exploration of what it takes to stay afloat in a world where your expiration—and the expiration of those you love—is the only certainty.

Duffy’s Thoughts On Everyone In This Room Will Someday Be Dead

Gilda is a train wreck of a human. Lurching from one job to the next, hiding dirty dishes in a wardrobe because she can’t face the washing up, and hospital visits so frequent, the janitor knows her by name. We follow Gilda as she tries to navigate the calamity which is her life and from the moment she accidentally ends up with a new job when all she really wanted was a counselling session.

Everyone In This Room Will Someday Be Dead is a unique read. It’s an acute observation of someone who is struggling with mental health issues, blending macabre thoughts and actions with deadpan humour. If you live with anxiety and other mental health issues, you will likely resonate with Gilda. As frustrating as she is at times, those intrusive thoughts are there for all of us at times. It’s just that we usually push them out of our heads and never EVER think to share them. Here, those thoughts and feelings are laid bare on the page in all its honesty and without any sugar coating.

The supporting cast of characters adds colour, light and a splash of wholesomeness to balance out the darker side of Everyone In This Room Will Someday Be Dead. This book won’t be for everyone, but I really enjoyed it and in particular, Gilda, an anti-heroine if ever there was one.

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