What fascinated me the most about the final book of the MaddAddam trilogy was Toby’s reaction to Zeb’s death at the very end of the novel. When Zeb left, and never returned, he was presumed dead by the rest of the survivors. This caused Toby to fall into a deep depression, affecting her physical appearance, and eventually, leading to her own unknown death.
Throughout both the second and third novel, I viewed Toby as a warrior. She seemed very strong, and unaffected by what was happening around her. She knew how to fend for herself, and didn’t seem interested in men at all. But when she got together with Zeb, this all changed. She became jealous, insecure, and most of all, dependent. My opinion of Toby shifted drastically, almost to the point of no recognition. She became a stereotype, and in a way, she reminded me a lot of Lucerne, which was amusing, since she always seemed to judge her for being so ‘feminine’. But much like Lucerne, Toby too became vulnerable, and though she tried to hide it, extremely jealous. This was totally out of character for her, which made me wonder, can love really change who you are?
Yes, in fact, according to Health, love changes your body chemistry. It releases dopamine, which increases your level of happiness, as well as makes you feel more energetic. It also raises your level of oxytocin, testosterone, and norepinephrine: all chemicals that have a direct link to how good we feel when we fall in love. Losing your significant other can feel like withdrawing from a drug, and can lead to major depression, and sometimes even suicide, the drop of emotions can be extremely overwhelming.
Zebulon definitely changed Toby, but not necessarily for the better. Love is a beautiful thing, but when it turns you into someone you aren’t, it becomes unhealthy, and for Toby, the loss of Zeb lead to her death. She fell into a pit of sadness, and started losing a ton of weight. In her words, she had a wasting sickness that was increasing, and soon she would not be able to walk (Page 389). Toby was definitely madly in love, and sometimes love can effect you physically. Zeb was definitely the love of her life, and in a way, he took her life.
MaddAddam; McClelland & Stewart, 2013; Bloomsbury, 2013; Nan A. Talese/Doubleday, 2013.