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snark (reading) lady

In my free time, I snark things. In my freer time, I read things.

Currently reading

Night Film
Marisha Pessl
The Amber Spyglass (His Dark Materials, #3)
Philip Pullman
Mark Slouka
The Lord of the Rings
J.R.R. Tolkien, J.R.R. Tolkien

More Than This

More Than This - Patrick Ness I love Patrick Ness and I love him for writing some of my favorite things of all time. I was beyond excited to pick up his new book, and I wasn't disappointed even if this book wasn't exactly my cup of tea. More Than This tells the story of Seth, a teenaged boy who dies after drowning in the ocean. He dies and then he wakes up somewhere new. We follow Seth as he tries to survive, tries to make sense of his new existence, his old life, and how the two are related. One thing about Ness books is that I shouldn't tell you much more. Ness has a way of keeping you off balance for the entire story. You never settle into the story as much as you allow yourself to be jerked along by it. It makes for an exciting read. I never once found a, "this is a good place to stop for the night," spot. I was always tearing myself from the world after something else was just revealed. Ness' writing style can range from downright poetic, to the style in this book which is very simple, stripped down and to the point. This book asks big WHAT IS LIFE? questions, and it does so in so many words. I mean, it is titled More Than This. The story is existential, but I love that it never gets preachy. Ness presents the story, builds up his questions around it and sort of puts his hands up and tells you to infer your own answers at your leisure. Perhaps other reviews won't treat these as spoilers, but [spoiler] I liked the supporting characters for what they added to the story, though I don't think there was one built to be loved. They are all flawed, quirky people, dropped in this deep and dark setting. Also, I applaud Ness for his use and portrayal of a gay protagonist. This isn't "revealed" into some ways into the story, so I don't want to take that away from anyone.[/spoilers]So why couldn't I bring myself to rate this 5 stars? The ending. It wasn't bad by any stretch of the imagination. I was looking at my Kindle seeing 99% and thinking, "OH MY GOSH HOW WILL HE FIX THIS?" But he does. Kind of. Reading this book was like a winding path uphill and the end leaves you right at the top of the hill. You turn the last page, and kind of look around all, "now what?" You know, I'd even say that's part of the charm of this book, but it isn't something I particularly like. So that missing star (and probably closer to half star) is a personal preference thing. Worth the read and will definitely end up as one of the best things I've read this year.