Entertainment Weekly

Stay Connected


Advertise With Us

Learn More

Skip to content


The End of the World as We Know It

Posted on

The End of the World as We Know It

Current Status:
In Season
Robert Goolrick
Algonquin Books
Nonfiction, Memoir

We gave it a B+

In The End of the World as We Know It, his unnerving, elegantly crafted memoir, Robert Goolrick reflects on his appalling Southern gothic childhood and the lifelong emotional hangover that followed. His mom was a glacial, self-absorbed beauty; his dad, feckless and lazy; both were raging alcoholics who died in boozy squalor. His morbidly funny account of a world in which people had ”cocktails and hairdos” takes a gruesome turn near the end, with the revelation of horrific sexual abuse. Goolrick has earned the right to feel sorry for himself, but the book’s tone changes abruptly, and regrettably, from crystalline observation to high-pitched self-indulgence. B+