Rummanah Aasi
  Reading a book by Neal Shusterman is always an adventure. His stories are so bizarre, original, and unexpected. The characters draw you in and challenge you to be in their shoes. Shusterman's novels some how manage to not only suck you in, but also absorb your thoughts days after you finish it. I was recently carried away by one of his novels called Everlost that explore the gray boundary between life and death.

Description: Nick and Allie do not survive a car accident. They are no longer alive, but have not yet reached the end of their journey. They land in Everlost, a color-bleached plane populated with child and teen spirits. There are rules in Everlost that new "greensouls" must learn to survive: keep moving, don't fall into a routine, don't seek the living, watch out for gangs, and steer clear of the McGill, Everlost's resident monster. Such rules are immortalized in the many books on Everlost penned by Mary Hightower, the leader of a large community of souls residing in the inanimate ghosts of New York's Twin Towers. Nick feels like he has found a home with Mary, while Allie fights to escape montony of Everlost and yearns to go back to the living.

Review: I finished Everlost in one afternoon. The action-packed plot moves quickly and is fully developed. I was never bored while reading the book. There is even a twist at the end that I did not see coming at all. I love when that happens! Nick and Allie along with the various Everlost characters grow and change as they learn to cope with their new existence. Thankfully, this is a trilogy and the first book so I look forward to reading more about Nick and Allie's adventures. Although Everlost does read as a complete and satisfying one volume book. I would have liked more of a discussion of life and death and hope to read more of that in the other books in the series. Everlost would be a great read for those who like adventure, fantasy, and science fiction.

Rating: 4 stars

Words of Caution: There is a few curse words sprinkled in the book. The concept of death might be too much for elementary school students, but I think this would be a great book for a book club suggestion for 7th graders and up. Here is a great discussion guide in case you do decide to use the book in a book club.

If you like this book, try: Everwild by Neal Shusterman or Elsewhere by Gabrielle Zevin
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