Thursday, September 1, 2011

I Am the Messenger

I Am the MessengerI Am the Messenger by Markus Zusak

AR Reading Level: 3.9
On the library stacks: YA Fiction
Awards: Michael Printz Honor; ALA Best Book for Young Adults; BCCB Blue Ribbon Book

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Ed Kennedy is useless. He's a 19-year old underage cab driver from Australia. He has a aged, smelly dog and he lives in a shack. He plays cards with his three friends named Ritchie, Marv, and the ever lovely (but so unattainable) Audrey. But things change when Ed is held up in a bank robbery and he inadvertently saves the day.

After the robber's trial, Ed begins receiving aces anonymously in the mail--first it's the ace of diamonds. He has instructions that he must do something at each of the three addresses listed on the card. Eventually Ed receives aces of all four suits, each with unique tasks to complete. Some tasks are hard and put his personal safety in jeopardy. Other tasks are pleasant and meaningful, like becoming friends with an old lady.Throughout the process, Ed realizes he is becoming a different, better person. But he is determined to figure out who is the messenger behind it all.

Once I got into the book, I was pretty blown away. The way Zusak can turn a phrase so packed full of emotion and depth actually brought me to tears. The writing was so beautiful and Ed's transformation was something lovely to witness.

However, I have two issues with this book. 1. The language is pretty rough, especially at the beginning, and can be crude at times. 2. I really hated the ending. It was just a disappointing let-down for me. I read this for my in-person book club, and we all enjoyed it. Some of us actually liked the ending, so maybe it's just me!

Also reviewed by: It's All About Books ~ Bart's Bookshelf ~ Capricious Reader ~ Your link here?
Source: Library


bermudaonion said...

Ed sounds like a fascinating character. I hate it when the ending of a book lets me down like that.

Melissa said...

I've been avoiding this book because I really didn't like The Book Thief. Though you make it sound intriguing. Maybe I will actually pick it up.

alisonwonderland said...

A friend recommended this one to me after we both read The Book Thief. Like you, she hated the ending. I loved the ending - and honestly, I can't think of another ending that would have been satisfying. Can you?

Nina said...

I have heard great things about Markus Zusaks writing. Too bad that you didn't like the ending, but the rest of the story sounds really nice. A very emotional read, I have to remember that when I'm in the mood for something like that.