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More Than This

by Patrick Ness

Published by U.S. edition: Candlewick Press, 2013
472 pages
ISBN: 978𢠩636-62585

Age 13 and older

Teenage Seth drowns in the chilly waters of the Pacific Northwest only to awaken, feeble and dehydrated, in the long abandoned house of his British childhood. Trying to make sense of the inexplicable world in which he抯 found himself梩he entire town appears lifeless桽eth struggles to find the basic necessities he needs to survive. He meets teenage Regine and young Tomasz on one of his scrounging forays, and they warn him about the Driver, a menacing individual who seems intent on hunting all three of them down. They also begin to explain the world in which Seth has found himself, and he mightily resists what they tell him. As more and more proof presents itself, Seth is forced to revisit painful moments from his long-ago childhood, and recent events that sent him walking into the ocean intent on dying. If he believes Regine and Tomasz, then much of Seth抯 life is a lie. If he rejects what they tell him, then they are the lie, and he抯 come to care too much about them to believe that, either. Masterful rather than manipulative, the ambiguity of Patrick Ness抯 wholly original and compelling novel gives readers a richly developed array of possibilities but leaves the meaning-making up to them when it comes to divining the situational truth of Seth抯 story. But some truths exist at every point along the continuum of possibilities laid out or waiting to be imagined: Meaningful relationships matter, and a life is so much more than can be measured or felt at any single moment in time.  © Cooperative Children's Book Center


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