Friday, May 11, 2018

Existentialism from Ness

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/21969786-more-than-this?from_search=true
More Than This, Patrick Ness
I listened to this as an audiobook (rarely my preference and not in this case either) over a week and a half while completing chores.  It's compelling.  The mystery-build is reminiscent of The Subtle Knife and The Maze Runner, but features more explicit and graphic content than both.  Tonally, it reminds me of A Short Stay in Hell (Steven L. Peck) and The Messenger (Markus Zusak).  So many comparisons, I know!  I wouldn't say the work is derivative, but comparative works were in my mind almost constantly while reading it (including The Matrix).  I also mentally compared it to other works I've read by Ness.  I liked it more than Release, but less than the Chaos Walking Trilogy and A Monster Calls.  If I had to pinpoint why it wasn't my favourite, it probably has to do with taking on too much.  More Than This tackles a lot of confronting questions and themes simultaneously.  All receive fair treatment, but none are given the sumptuous depth I know Ness is capable of.   This one is for mature readers (16+, maybe), and contains coarse language, sensual scenes, violence, abuse, trauma-I-won't-specify-so-as-not-to-spoil, suicide, various accounts of death, teens coming out to parents, bullying and more.
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