The ending of Nevada is frustratingly anti-climactic. The book ends with James ditching Maria at a casino to go back to his unsatisfying relationship with his girlfriend. There’s no more after that; no resolution with Maria or what she’s going to do. There are a TON of loose ends left.
The ending, in my opinion, is super absurdist. There’s no meaning or anything to the ending; it simply ends with James wishing his girlfriend would give him head, something very mundane and sexual . Compared to a lot of the other books we read which at least had an ending, this is extremely different. Compare it to Zami where Lorde ends it with philosophical musings on her own life and struggles in the book. Not just narratively, there’s something missing in the ending of Nevada. There’s no closure, none.
I’m sure this is completely intentional on Binnie’s part. Perhaps she wanted to instill the frustrating bleakness of life or something equally depressing. There’s not a lot of room for happy interpretations here.
Looking at this from the perspective of Maria as a Manic Pixie Dream Girl as I posted earlier, it’s a definite subversion of the trope. Maria just absolutely fails at being a Manic Pixie Dream Girl here. James just ditches her and just goes back to his previous way of living. You really can’t fix a person if they really don’t want to be fixed.
Of all the books we read this semester, I feel like this has one of the more bleak endings. I know it leaves me bleak.
- Why do you think Imogen Binnie ended the novel this way?
- Do you think James was justified in leaving? Why or why not?