Tomorrow, and Tomorrow, and Tomorrow: the book’s ending, explained


Tomorrow, and Tomorrow, and Tomorrow is a 2022 novel by Gabrielle Zevin. It follows the story of Sam and Sadie, two gamers and programmers in the late 90’s who come together and drift apart throughout the novel. Let’s see what the end is about.

Spoilers Ahead!

Sam and Sadie- their starting and coming back together

Sadie Green and Samson Masur meet first at a hospital in California when they’re around 11. While her sister is in treatment for cancer, Sam is there with his left foot badly broken from an accident. Their love for games brings them together.

Sam has spoken for the first time since his accident to Sadie. That’s why the nurses suggest Sadie talk to him for her community service till her Bar Mitzvah. Sadie gets her timesheet stamped every time she leaves. Although she needed just a few hours, the total falls at 609 hours when Sam gets to know and feels that it was not real friendship but “charity”.

They don’t speak but fast forward when they’re in university- Sam (Harvard) and Sadie (MIT)- when they meet again. Sadie gives Sam her coursework video-game to review and they reconnect again.

Sadie’s relationships and Sam’s proposal

Sadie is in a relationship with her professor- a famous game programmer- when she meets Sam. It’s nothing sustainable since he’s married. Along with her lover, he’s her mentor but slowly, she feels herself diminishing. Eventually, he leaves to patch up with his wife in Israel and Sadie is heartbroken and depressed.

That’s when Sam proposes that they make a game together. They’re a good team, they love gaming and Sam’s roommate Marx is letting them use his apartment for the same. The game will be ready before their next term. Sadie eventually agrees after reluctance.

Birth of Ichigo, A Child of The Sea

Marx is also the producer of the game. He’s got a soft spot for Sam and considers him his younger brother. Sam’s broken foot is barely holding up in his adult age and he’s constantly is pain. As they start working on a game, they’re inspired by the Japanese culture and symbols which they base the game on. Its sweet, simple yet compelling.

The game bagged a huge amount of money and changed their lives. Sam’s looks made players believe he was Ichigo and associated the game with him- Sadie is in the backlight, something she resents.

Further games and complications

Their deal had a condition that Ichigo needs a sequel, and while Sam (Mazer now) was on tours, Sadie worked reluctantly on the sequel- which wasn’t a huge success. She felt like a failure. She blamed Sam for it and refused to make another part of it.

Sadie proposed another game- one with a parallel world. Sam loved the idea and they started work on it but fought a lot since they were both struggling internally with their own issues. They decided to work separately on the two worlds. When the game- Both Sides- released, the world Sam made became more popular even though Sadie’s was better in graphics.

Adding to the piling resentment, the team decided to reproduce Sam’s world into a separate game altogether. This was the early 2000’s. They’ve shifted and settled their offices in California for Sam’s necessary foot amputation.

Mapletown and a heart-breaking tragedy

The game- Mapletown was released and became immensely popular. Sam was the Mayor in that virtual world and the people felt peace after the tragedy of 9/11 which struck them a few months prior. They seeked utopia.

It had also been sometime since Marx and Sadie became a couple and were in love. Sam realised that had he not waited, he and Sadie might’ve been together.

Sam soon started to make political statements through the game. Same-sex marriage, gun laws etc. This led to the tragedy where Marx was fatally shot because of someone’s irrational and displaced anger at Mayor Mazer- Sam’s persona. Sam and Sadie were touring when this happened.

Sadie, pregnant, was devastated. Sam handled the burden of running the business alone. They drifted apart.

A game for Sadie…

Sam developed a resource-gathering game based on Sadie’s and his likes in their childhood. He made it to comfort Sadie and himself too. He interacted with her in disguise in the game and the two became close and even married.

Sadie soon confronted the virtual avatar and Sam came clean. She felt he betrayed her privacy and stopped talking to him altogether. She accepted the position of teaching the Advanced Games class she was in and moved to Massachusetts with her daughter.

A new beginning and a new hope

Eventually, after 2 years and now in their 30’s, Sam and Sadie get in touch again. They talked about the meeting with a company which wished to make Ichigo part 3. They decided it to be a good decision. They talked about life, loss and love. Sam asked why they never came into a relationship. Sadie replied that she liked her work relationship with him.

Throughout the novel, there are enough “just out of reach” moments which show how compatible both of them are but just never fell in sync. They part again and Sadie, like the beginning, gives him her game to review. They start again, a replay button for players to play till they reach their goal.

Talking to Today, the author says that, “The story is about partnership and collaboration, about romance and love, and about finding hope and growth after tragedy rocks everything.”