26 January 2013

The Wrap-Up List; Steven Arnston

The Wrap-Up ListThe Wrap-Up List by Steven Arntson
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

DEATH is my favorite character in all of Discworld, and the Deaths imagined here by Arnston are pretty great! In this proximate future version of America (well, the world, really) people die, but some "depart" following letters received from a Death. Gabrielle is one such person - Hercule sends her a letter suggesting a week from Wednesday as her departure date. The established protocol is to write a wrap-up list, similar to a bucket list but with a definite time frame in mind. The Death will respond with hints as to how to accomplish said items; if you can find the Death's Secret Weakness, you might get a Pardon and continue with your life.

With only a week to live, Gabrielle has to find the Secret Witness, complete her wrap-up list, say goodbye to her friends and family, and prepare to depart. It's a lot, but the way in which she approaches it is interesting and will definitely resonate with teens. Her Death, Hercule, is less an amorphous thing than another character in the story, capable of emotion. If nothing else, it may make readers think about what they would want on their wrap-up list.

ARC provided by publisher.

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