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September 10, 2009

Elsewhere by Gabrielle Zevin

Is it possible to grow up while getting younger?
Welcome to Elsewhere. It is warm, with a breeze, and the beaches are marvelous. It’s quiet and peaceful. You can’t get sick or any older. Curious to see new paintings by Picasso? Swing by one of Elsewhere’s museums. Need to talk to someone about your problems? Stop by Marilyn Monroe’s psychiatric practice.  
Elsewhere is where fifteen-year-old Liz Hall ends up, after she has died. It is a place so like Earth, yet completely different. Here Liz will age backward from the day of her death until she becomes a baby again and returns to Earth. But Liz wants to turn sixteen, not fourteen again. She wants to get her driver’s license. She wants to graduate from high school and go to college. And now that she’s dead, Liz is being forced to live a life she doesn’t want with a grandmother she has only just met. And it is not going well. How can Liz let go of the only life she has ever known and embrace a new one? Is it possible that a life lived in reverse is no different from a life lived forward?
I had never heard of this book previously to reading it and I think it is a shame. While this book might not sit well with some people, most people regardless of their religious beliefs will be able to let go of that and think of this book as a book not as religious doctrine to be criticized for that reason.
Besides that the book is good, it is very different than any book I have read before. The story line flows together well and really doesn't become boring at any point. The characters are well developed and very lovable.  I wanted her grandma to be mine she was so sweet and understanding!
One of the problems I had with this book was that the main character whined for over half the book. I was like "ok you're dead get over it there is nothing you can do about it move on" eventually though she does and after that it becomes a story of love, acceptance, and making the best of every situation. Overall a good book.


  1. This sounds really intersting. I'll have to check it out. Thanks for the review.

  2. My first thought is the movie Benjamin Button, unfortunitely, I fell asleep before the end, I think I'll try this book, since it is a great concept.

  3. i have this one on my tbr list! hmm i've also read a short story of her's and fell in love with it so i will totally get this one :D

  4. I really liked this book! It is sort of like Benjamin Button but also completely different because of the death aspect.

  5. Hi, Mariah! I just saw a link to your blog on Kristen's post from last Sunday (if you get to know me, you will find I am always behind on reading blogs). I love the design of your site. I browsed through your posts and I love your writing style. I have now subscribed to you! I am also putting Elsewhere on my TBR list (which is about 1200 books and counting...) thanks to your review. It sounds really interesting!

  6. This sounds really good. I love stories with loveable, well-crafted characters.


  7. I love this reviw. I've seen the book, but I never bothered to pick it up. Gosh darn it, I wish I did...now I totally need to look for this book & read it.

  8. I absolutely loved this book. I read it right around when it came out, and it's been one of my favorites since.


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