Elsewhere – Gabrielle Zevin

 

Is it possible to grow up while getting younger?

Welcome to Elsewhere.  It is warm, with a breeze, and the beaches are marvelous.  It’s quiet and peaceful.  You can’t get sick or any older.  Curious to see new paintings by Picasso?  Swing by one of Elsewhere’s museums.  Need to talk to someone about your problems?  Stop by Marilyn Monroe’s psychiatric practice.

Elsewhere is where fifteen-year-old Liz Hall ends up, after she has died.  It is a place so like Earth, yet completely different.  Here Liz will age backward from the day of her death until she becomes a baby again and returns to Earth.  But Liz wants to turn sixteen, not fourteen again.  She wants to get her driver’s license.  She wants  to graduate from high school and go to college.  And now that she’s dead, Liz is being forced to live a life she doesn’t want with a grandmother she has only just met.  And it is not going well.  How can Liz let go of the only life she has ever known and embrace a new one?  Is it possible that a life lived in reverse is no different from a life lived forward?

 

What a new way to think about what happens after death.  What if you did live again…but in reverse?  Liz can’t quite wrap her head around it (surprise, could you?!) and has to deal with all new concepts of the ever after and her place in the universe.  Very good and thought provoking.  Recommended.    -Jessica, Teen Librarian.

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