Publisher's Note:  

From two-time Carnegie Medal winner Patrick Ness comes an enthralling and provocative new novel chronicling the life — or perhaps afterlife — of a teen trapped in a crumbling, abandoned world.

A boy named Seth drowns, desperate and alone in his final moments, 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, his bones breaking, his skull dashed upon the rocks. 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, that this might not be the hell he fears it to be, that there might be more than just this. . ..

More Than This

by Patrick Ness

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Overall Review:  

In the past several years, books targeted at teens such as The Hunger Games have become popular, and sometimes it seems like the majority of what is published is a book with a story that centers on a dystopian society headed toward ever more dysfunction and disaster. It can be easy for all of the storylines of these books to run together into somewhat of a muddle of words, plots, and characters. Eventually, a new fad among teen readers and writers will show up, but if you are getting a bit bored with what can seem like the same story over and over, Patrick Ness has written a book with a slightly different feel to it.

Imagine waking up from what may or may not be a dream.  The fact that you aren't sure if you are awake or still dreaming is eerie enough, but your family has all disappeared, or at least they are nowhere to be found. Everything as you have known it has changed, and yet everything is the same. More Than This is the remarkably creative story of Seth, a boy who is very much dead, and yet very much alive. Is he an apparition? A ghost? Is he dreaming? It's up to you to find out.

Content Analysis:  

Profanity/Language:  10 religious exclamations; 56 mild obscenities; 5 religious profanities; 5 derogatory names; 1 anatomical term; 3 F-word derivatives


Violence/Gore:  A teen girl commits suicide; two characters shoot each other, resulting in an injury for one of them but no blood or gore is mentioned; a "monster" chases and attacks a group of characters; a girl briefly speaks of being abused by her stepfather; a girl is physically and verbally abused in at home; a child is abducted and it is suggested that he may have been killed; a young child is mentioned to have died; a character drowns violently; several scary scenes involving coffins and corpses; there is a car crash with no casualties.


Sex/Nudity: Two teen boys are attracted to each other, despite their parents discouragement; two teen boys kiss; a teen boy dares his friend to sleep with a fellow girl classmate; two teens are attracted to each other and one of them describes being sexually aroused; a boy describes a nude man, this could be interpreted in a sexual way; a teen boy mentions his use of pornography briefly but with no detail.

Mature Subject Matter:  

Death, homosexuality, the end of the world.

Alcohol / Drug Use:  

Teens drink alcohol; teens smoke cigarettes; teens are mentioned to be drunk.

Reviewed By Lydia
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