by Patrick Ness

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Review

Seth is dead. He drowned off the coast of Washington and did he really try to save himself? Now he’s awakened alone in an abandoned world covered in dust. Stranger yet, he’s in his old house in London where he hasn’t lived in years.  His family immigrated to America after a bad man did bad things to his brother and it was Seth’s fault.  Is he in hell or some kind of existential afterlife where he has to face his shortfalls to move on?  Or is this all there is? When he sleeps, he painfully relives his memories of drowning, his secret boyfriend, and what happened to his family.  One day he discovers two other people in this desolate landscape who are trying to escape The Driver, an entity that wants to kill all of them. But aren’t they already dead?  Seth struggles to find out what’s real, and if it even matters when reality is only what he thinks it is, right? A creepy sci fi read that will stick with you  long after you finish.  Ness does an excellent job of exploring the meaning of life and death, reality and personal perception.  I love the way Ness writes and the fact that he leaves the answer up to the reader to figure out. Plus,  it’s always interesting to wonder what happens to us after we die.

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