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More than this by Patrick Ness

October 15, 2013

more than thisMore Than This by Patrick Ness. Pub. Walker Books, 2013.

This novel for senior readers will have you spellbound

Structured in four parts each part has you re thinking what has gone before without the relevance of your thoughts being in any way compromised.

Part one has 16 year old Seth drowning in the cold sea of west Coast America. He is crushed by the sea and knows that he is going to die. When he awakes he is in his hometown in Britain having awakened from a shiny black coffin in his bedroom. The town is deserted and clearly has not been lived in for decades.

He wonders where he is. Is it the afterlife? Is it hell? Is it another reality? What else can it be? When he sleeps he dreams about critical events in his life particularly his relationship with Gudmund while living in America and the kidnap of his young brother Owen when he was 8 years and living in Britain. Is it self judgement?

In part 2 he meets black teenager Regine and Polish boy Thonasz. They save him from the Driver a dark clothed figure wearing a perspex mask. How did they get there?

I am not going to tell you about parts 3 and 4 needless to say the whole scenario changes yet the judgements of Seth’s past life through dreams continues until he finds some resolution.

In between there is action aplenty and a scenario that will mesmerise you. I read every word. I had to and wanted to. Writing like this does not come along very often. Grab it while you can.

Before I started I thought of the Brian Ferry song of the same title and I added the last line – More than this you know there’s nothing” but I was wrong. This is what the book does to you.

At the deepest level it is a commentary on human behaviour- ” If you give a human being a chance to be stupid and violent then they are going to take it every time”. Provocative yet beautifully written.

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