More than this by Patrick Ness

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Walker Books, 2013. ISBN 9781406331158.
(Age: 14+) Highly recommended. How many of us in moments of desperation or deep frustration have cried out these very words: 'There must be more to life than this . . . ' Seth wakes from his own death to find himself in an apocalyptical world of solitary desolation. Pursued by a mysterious robotic creature called The Driver, he must piece together the circumstances of his death and discover whether he is now part of an imaginary world or if there really is more to life than this.
There are stories that keep us on the edge of our seat with a brutal roller coaster of action. There are stories that unnerve us - when we feel the author is unpicking our very soul, and there are stories so unusual and inspired that they make us question what life is really about. With an incredible cocktail of philosophy, fear and phantasmagorical ingenuity Ness has accomplished all three. And he makes it look so easy. This is a story that slides in like syrup and kicks like a hot chilli. It is definitely the best book I have read this year and will have massive appeal to fans of the Chaos Walking trilogy.
It's hard to put an age suggestion on this novel. Mature fourteen year olds may be able to handle it, but alongside themes of abuse, murder and suicide the most unsettling idea is that we are currently well on our way to creating the world that Ness has imagined. Or . . . are we already there? You will have to read the book to understand the significance of that question!
Claire Larson