Book Review of Elsewhere

Author: Gabrielle Zevin
Genres: Children's Books, Reference
Book Type: Paperback
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Liz has died. She's dead. Kicked the bucket, taken the big sleep, bought the farm, whatever you want to call it, she's gone. Or is she? Liz wakes up shortly after her death. Not in her coffin or in her grave or somewhere gruesome like that, but she wakes up on a cruise ship. She's in white pajamas and rooming with a girl she never met.

It takes Liz awhile to figure out that she's gone. It doesn't make a lot of sense, she was only 15, well almost 16. The cruise ship she wakes up on finally puts her down in what all the inhabitants call "Elsewhere." Things are different here than they were on Earth...but surprisingly the same. Liz can watch over her family back on Earth...sometimes, but she has a life...now that she's dead.

Even though the synopsis is confusing, the book really is not. This has to be one of the best books I have read in a long time. Zevin basically answered the question about life after death, and did it in a way that was both sad, but enlightening and hopeful at the same time. "Elsewhere" is technically a YA book, but I found it to be exceptionally entertaining and very insightful.

I must say I cried throughout most of the book. Not full out balling, but I teared up on more than one occasion and at the seemingly simplest things throughout "Elsewhere." I feel that doing so really added to the reading experience as opposed to distracting from it. I found the entire story that Zevin made up about life after death to be just plain wonderful. She even answered the question of God and where He is after death in a non-offensive and non-religious way if that's even possible.

I have a lot of respect for Zevin. She has penned an amazing book that is insightful, heartwarming, and touching all at once. Pick up "Elsewhere" even if you don't believe in Heaven, God, life after death, or anything like that. "Elsewhere" makes you wonder, think, ponder, and appreciate the life you have.