More Than This (Paperback)
Heartbroken and humiliated, Seth ends his pain by diving into the frigid waters of the Pacific Northwest . . . And then awakens in his early childhood home a continent away. But this is not his home as he remembers it: the whole area is abandoned and derelict. Is this hell, an alternate universe, or something else entirely? Seth must reckon with his past as he grapples with the present . . . and he needs to hurry because something is lurking. ~ Eight Cousins, Summer Picks 2021— From Summer Picks 2021
Seth drowns, desperate and alone. But then he wakes. Naked, thirsty, starving. But alive. And where is he? The street seems familiar, but everything is abandoned, overgrown, covered in dust. He remembers dying, his skull bashed against the rocks. Has he woken up in his own personal hell? Is there more to this life, or perhaps this afterlife? From the acclaimed author of the Chaos Walking trilogy and A Monster Calls comes one of the most provocative teen novels of our time.
—School Library Journal (starred review)
Ness brilliantly plays with contrasts: life and death, privacy and exposure, guilt and innocence. In characteristic style, the author of the Chaos Walking trilogy delves into the stuff of nightmares for an existential exploration of the human psyche.
—Kirkus Reviews (starred review)
Compulsively readable... It is a very compelling, multidimensional story.
—Library Media Connection
Ness’ knack for cliff-hangers, honed in the Chaos Walking series, remains strong, while the spare, gradual, anytime, anyplace quality of the story recalls A Monster Calls... Ness has crafted something stark and uncompromising.
This complex, genrebending book opens with Seth’s violent drowning death at sea, described in such spare but devastating detail that readers may feel themselves gasping for a breath as Seth draws his last. ... Ness subverts familiar sci-fi/survival tropes and storytelling conventions, leaving readers with an ambiguous ending... The thematic explorations of the nature of reality and the afterlife offer some heady discussion fodder, while the nail-biting tension and high-stakes action sequences make this an easy sell to the legions of dystopia fans as well.
—Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books
Ness leads readers on an adventure into a world that astounds and amazes. ... Ness captures the mind of a teenager perfectly. It is a fast-paced journey that even reluctant readers will pursue...
Ness is not only a good storyteller but an interesting prose stylist, and his latest effort is as provocative as ever.
—The Horn Book
Books are often described as ‘mind-blowing,’ but this is one of the few books in which, while reading it, I have exclaimed aloud, ‘Oh. My. God.’ on multiple occasions. I won’t tell you anything else about it. Just read it.
It is a gorgeous story with masterful pacing and unforgettable passages.
—The Boston Globe
At times, More Than This is like a literary experiment that only by the grace and dedication of its creator resulted in a novel proper, but in the hands of a poised, perfectionist prose-smith like Patrick Ness, it’s rarely less than life-affirming. ... The author’s newest novel is riveting, edge-of-your-reading-seat stuff from beginning to end.
Artsy, creepy, and full of psychological suspense... Ness specializes in writing post-apocalyptic worlds where things are rarely as they seem. ... The dizzying ending brings the characters to the narrow edge between inevitable outcomes and hope for second chances — and challenges readers to form their own conclusions.
[A] YA game-changer. It's provocative and philosophical, sweet and darkly funny, and destined to be discussed and debated. And there's not a vampire or a zombie lurking anywhere in its dystopian landscape.
—Minneapolis Star Tribune