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More Than This

Ness, Patrick, 1971-

Book - 2013
Average Rating: 4 stars out of 5.
More Than This
A boy named Seth drowns, losing his life as the pounding sea claims him. But then he wakes. He is naked, thirsty, starving. But alive. How is that possible? He remembers dying. So how is he here? And where is this place? It looks like the suburban English town where he lived as a child, before an unthinkable tragedy happened and his family moved to America. But the neighborhood around his old house is overgrown, covered in dust, and completely abandoned. What's going on? And why is it that whenever he closes his eyes, he falls prey to vivid, agonizing memories that seem more real than the world around him? Seth begins a search for answers, hoping that he might not be alone, trapped in a crumbling, abandoned world.

Publisher: Somerville, Mass. : Candlewick Press, 2013
Edition: 1st U.S. ed
ISBN: 0763662585 (hardcover)
9780763662585 (hardcover)
Branch Call Number: PZ7.N43843 Mor 2013x
Characteristics: 472 pages ; 23 cm


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Jan 17, 2015
  • mvkramer rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

This is a perfectly fine book by Patrick Ness, but it lacks the raw, emotional punch of his other works. For an almost-500-page book, this was pretty propulsive - I think I read the last 200 pages in an afternoon. I like the deliberate ambiguity of the setting. Is Seth really dead and imagining the whole thing, or is it real?

Nov 14, 2014
  • Chapel_Hill_StephenA rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

The main character of this book dies within the first five pages. But that's only the beginning. He could have never predicted the world he would wake up in: a strange abandoned version of his childhood in England. The book starts slow and tense and quickly escalates into a thrilling and thoughtful adventure.

Sep 25, 2014
  • joelbutler rated this: 4.5 stars out of 5.

A boy drowns off the Northwest coast of America, he wakes up in his childhood home in England. An England that is covered in thick layers of dust with not a single person. It had me reading late into the night with cliffhangers and revelations every few pages.

Aug 05, 2014

"When 16-year-old Seth walks into the churning waves of the ocean, he never expects to wake up -- especially not in a desolate, uninhabited version of his family's old neighbourhood in England. Could he be in hell, or is something stranger going on? Grieving for the forbidden love he shared with his best friend and nursing his guilt over a tragic childhood mishap, Seth tries to puzzle out what's really happening… and if he's really alone. "Stark and uncompromising" (Booklist), More Than This will appeal to older fans of gritty dystopian survival stories as well as to thoughtful readers who like to chew on mind-bending ideas." Teen Scene August 2014 newsletter http://www.libraryaware.com/996/NewsletterIssues/ViewIssue/901904f0-2498-4d63-9444-9269c2947502?postId=1ec4cbf0-86db-49f7-95ca-d750f797014b

Jun 11, 2014

hate open ended books like this

Jun 06, 2014
  • esuntken786 rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

The prose and style of the book leads the reader right through the emotions they should be feeling. In the beginning, an third person omniscient tells of a boy who dies and wakes up in an unknown place. Patrick Ness uses sentence length an bland descriptions to leave the reader as confused as the boy. As the book picks up in suspense, so do the description. This effect pushes the reader through the story, leaving them wanting more. Throughout the novel the complex ideas of the meaning of life and afterlife appeal to emotions the reader knows to effectively prove points.

Feb 06, 2014
  • JCLChrisK rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

Seth's story starts with his suicide, after he's given up hope that life holds anything more for him. Except death isn't all there is, because he wakes in a strange, empty, strangely familiar world. He's lost, weak, and hungry and faced with a new set of questions: What is this place and does he care enough to struggle to survive while he figures it all out?
I didn't find all of the answers as fascinating and satisfying as they might have been (four stars, not five), but I did enough of them to make the book engagingly meaningful, and the journey to them was characterized by captivating plotting, pacing, characters, and world-building. As information emerges, Seth--and readers--are kept just off-balance enough to maintain momentum and build tension without ever feeling frustratingly adrift. A journey well worth taking.

Jan 22, 2014
  • Kyanite rated this: 3.5 stars out of 5.

A good book, but if you have a problem with really open-ended books, then this one isn't for you.

Jan 06, 2014
  • librarygirl_6 rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

As someone who is not a huge fan of the dystopian genre (while I do love YA fiction), I was surprisingly drawn very much into this book. It may seem a bit slow-paced at the beginning but stick with it and follow Seth on his journey. It will be well-worth the read. I definitely plan to read other works by Patrick Ness.

Jan 03, 2014
  • LibraryK8 rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

A very mysterious plot, it can be a little hard to follow. I thought I had my finger on it about a third of the way through and I couldn't figure out how the story was going to continue for another 250 pages...then there was a twist! Then another! Then another! The plot will keep you guessing (although not always in the best way, I did find some of the twists very confusing and not entirely believable) but in the end I was left satisfied (for the most part). It could be a little bit of a set up for sequel, not sure yet. But I think it can stand on its own if you like ambiguity.

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Jan 03, 2014
  • LibraryK8 rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

The morning after Seth walks into the Pacific Ocean and is crushed on the rocks by the brutal waves, he wakes up. It is impossible, his shoulder was broken, his skull pulverized on the sharp reef near his Oregon home. He has been transported to the small English town where he grew up (and left when he was only 8 for a better life in America). Everything is exactly the same as he left it...exactly. Nothing has moved, no one has trespassed, no one has cleaned. The house is filled with dust, the lawn has grown unruly and the cabinets are full of moldy food. When he steps outside he discovers that the rest of his block, his neighborhood, his whole town, has been completely abandoned.

Seth is convinced he must be in hell, a personal hell plucked from his worst memories, that sent him into the frigid ocean in the first place. Then he meets two other survivors, although he isn't entirely convinced they aren't a part of his imagination, and begins to uncover the truth about the town that time forgot.


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