Knopf Books for Young Readers
April 14, 2015
add to Goodreads/buy from TBD/or Amazon
Fans of John Green and Matthew Quick: Get ready to die laughing.While it's true, 'What if yo knew when you were going to die?' isn't exactly the newest idea, Lance Rubin's take on the question just may be.
Denton Little's Deathdate takes place in a world exactly like our own except that everyone knows the day they will die. For 17-year-old Denton Little, that's tomorrow, the day of his senior prom.
Despite his early deathdate, Denton has always wanted to live a normal life, but his final days are filled with dramatic firsts. First hangover. First sex. First love triangle (as the first sex seems to have happened not with his adoring girlfriend, but with his best friend's hostile sister. Though he's not totally sure. See: first hangover.) His anxiety builds when he discovers a strange purple rash making its way up his body. Is this what will kill him? And then a strange man shows up at his funeral, claiming to have known Denton's long-deceased mother, and warning him to beware of suspicious government characters…. Suddenly Denton's life is filled with mysterious questions and precious little time to find the answers.
Debut author Lance Rubin takes us on a fast, furious, and outrageously funny ride through the last hours of a teenager's life as he searches for love, meaning, answers, and (just maybe) a way to live on.
In Denton Little's world almost everyone knows the day their going to die, their deathdeate. Tomorrow is Denton's.
Denton Little's Deathdate was a lot funnier than I was expecting. The summary does promise laughter but the novel exceeded any expectations I had.
Denton knows he's going to die in, really, only a matter of hours. He has his funeral to look forward to, time with his best friend, his parents and brother . . . and then he's going to die at seventeen-years-old. He's known it for almost as long as he can remember and has tried to have a normal life in spite of - or maybe a little bit because of - it.
Only now, with his death approaching, he has questions. Questions about how he'll die, when exactly, about his dead mother. Questions and more questions but not more time.
As Denton progresses through the last days of his life, we see the questions he has for himself on how he's lived his life, the choices he's made, the things he's done and left undone and his thoughts on family, friends, love and loss.
Even as the book is incredibly humorous, it's also touching and though provoking.
The science of how people's deathdates are known and the workings of that were mostly missing. There's enough of a mention that it doesn't feel entirely ignored and it makes sense Denton wouldn't be giving that much thought, but I was still curious.
Denton is a character I think I would have liked reading about at any point in his life, but with the added element of his (known) impending death, he's a brilliant character. The ending leaves more than a few questions; I hope to read a sequel soon. There's so many possibilities presented - with the characters, deathdates, and what happens in the end of the novel - for a second (at least) book.
digital galley received from publisher, via NetGalley, for review