Tuesday, September 5, 2017

They Both Die at the End by Adam Silvera

Title: They Both Die at the End
Author: Adam Silvera
Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary, Science Fiction
Source: HarperTeen via Edelweiss

When Mateo receives the dreaded call from Death-Cast, informing him that today will be his last, he doesn't know where to begin. Quiet and shy, Mateo is devastated at the thought of leaving behind his hospitalised father, and his best friend and her baby girl. But he knows that he has to make the most of this day, it's his last chance to get out there and make an impression.

Rufus is busy beating up his ex-girlfriend's new boyfriend when he gets the call. Having lost his entire family, Rufus is no stranger to Death-Cast. Not that it makes it any easier. With bridges to mend, the police searching for him and the angry new boyfriend on his tail, it's time to run.

Isolated and scared, the boys reach out to each other, and what follows is a day of living life to the full. Though neither of them had expected that this would involve falling in love...

Another beautiful, heartbreaking and life-affirming book from the brilliant Adam Silvera, author of More Happy Than Not and History Is All You Left Me.
Review by Nara

No matter how we choose to live, we both die at the end
Adam Silvera is not known to write the fluffiest of novels (please see: More Happy Than Not and
History Is All You Left Me). But I must admit, despite the ominous title, They Both Die at the End was surprisingly not as devastating as expected. Perhaps after the continuous stab in the feels that History Is All You Left Me, I was expecting a lot more heartbreak in Silvera's next novel. While objectively sad, I felt like They Both Die at the End didn't quite have the emotional punch of Silvera's previous novels.

The novel centres on Rufus and Mateo, two young adults who have just been called by Death Cast, a company that lets you know about your death on the day that you die. They don't let you know what time, just that you are going to die in the next 24 hours. Rufus and Mateo meet through an app named Last Friend which matches "Deckers" (those who are going to die) and try to live a lifetime in a single day.

Rufus and Mateo were great characters. Despite seeing them only over the course of a single day, the character development was excellent, and it really felt like you knew the characters by the end of the novel. I did feel like the novel got slightly preachy about "carpe diem", especially with Mateo's character, which I guess stemmed slightly from the author's opinion as he states in the author's note.

Throughout the novel, there were short chapters from other more minor characters' points of view, and I have to say these little chapters were probably my favourite part of the novel. It was interesting seeing how they connected with the main story despite being from random characters.

Overall, I think They Both Die at the End was not quite as good as Adam Silvera's other novels, but it was still a well written and engaging novel. Certainly recommended.

Really liked it
Overall: 8/10
Plot: 4/5
Romance: 3/5
Writing: 4/5
Characters: /5
Cover: 4/5