It is very rare for me to give a book less than three or four stars…I was very disappointed in this book, it was definitely a book that I was hoping to enjoy. The expectations I had going into reading this were not met. This was my first Zevin book.
Elsewhere is about a fifteen year-old girl named Liz who is hit by a taxi and dies. Liz wakes up on a ship and can’t remember what happened. Later, she learns that the ship is taking her to Elsewhere. On the ship, she meets a friend, Thandi and a famous musician, Curtis. Basically, this story is a portrayal of the “afterlife”. I was confused by the rules in Elsewhere and did not agree with them such as that they are forbidden to talk to their loved ones on Earth? That’s ridiculous. They don’t age up, they age down and then return to Earth as babies. Also, you’re punished if you try to use the ocean to contact your loved ones on Earth. The children do not go to school, they immediately have a job. Animals speak, which we learn at Liz’s job. Some concepts I enjoyed but I wished that Elsewhere wasn’t so strict. I felt that the world building wasn’t developed very well or fair.
The main character, Liz *I felt* wasn’t a likeable character, she was rude and self-centered. She’s very rude when she meets her grandmother for the first time which made me very unhappy. She spends countless hours watching her family on Earth and complaining about how she doesn’t want to be dead.
I also was left with unanswered questions & felt that the romance wasn’t needed. I wanted to see more of Thandi, too. I felt that Thandi was her friend and she didn’t go to her for advice, she went to Curtis. Really, Liz just annoyed me!!
Overall, this was just not my kind of book and I wish it would’ve been constructed better & left out Liz’s romance. I couldn’t wait to be done this book. But, I’ll still try more of Zevin’s work! This book wasn’t for me, but it could be for you!
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