Kelly Cowley's Reviews > I Am the Messenger

I Am the Messenger by Markus Zusak
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's review
Apr 26, 2012

really liked it
bookshelves: young-adult-books
Recommended to Kelly by: Karolina
Read from April 26 to May 02, 2012

Since I've finished this in less than a week, I can't say I wasn't absorbed. As of this book Zusak's writing hasn't fully blossomed into the gorgeous prose of 'The Book Thief' but it's clear he's always had a palpable narrative voice and vision. It's hard to resist a book that opens in the middle of a bank heist and features a smelly aging dog as a major character. That said, I guess it all comes down to whether you liked the ending or not. I'd actually predicted the ending twist (or at least seen it as a major possibility) because really, who else would give a person that kind of part sentimental, part brutal mission? So I didn't feel surprised. To be honest, I think the ending made the whole novel feel too much like an extended whimsical parable than a story. If it were a story it could have been an 'Amelie' type story or a 'Stranger than Fiction' type story (both movies that I love) but I didn't find it as distinctive as either of them. I think I might have preferred Kafka style resolve where the protagonist never really gets any answers or absolution for the strange inexplicable things that happen to him. That said I'm still glad I read it and I totally loved the Doorman.

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Reading Progress

04/29/2012 page 122

Comments (showing 1-6 of 6) (6 new)

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Karo Best.Status.Ever. :-)

Kelly  Cowley I'm having a weekend away in London this weekend. I'll hopefully get to do a lot of reading on the train. :)

Karo So, how do you like it so far?

Kelly  Cowley It's great! Didn't have much reading time this weekend but I like it so far. It's kinda like a male version of Amelie (only with hitmen). I do love the Doorman!

Karo I agree with you: It depends A LOT on the ending whether you like the whole book or not. Personally, I liked the ending a lot because it carries such a positive message about what people could achieve in their lives if only they tried to be more self-confident and positive about themselves. It's not a very creative ending, I'll give you that, but I liked it.

For me, it's all the little episodes and the people whose lives Ed manages to change - even if only a tiny bit sometimes - that make the book so special. I love Ed, I love the old lady who misses her "Jimmy", the girl without the running shoes, the polynesian family, Ed's hopeless looser friends and the Doorman, of course. (Best animal character ever after Manchee! *lol*)
It's a truly heart-warming story full of many wonderful characters.

Kelly  Cowley I liked the message too but I'm not a big fan of writers breaking the fourth wall especially when they do it right at the end of the book. I prefer this technique if they do it like 'Strange than Fiction' where you and the fictional hero know what the deal is from the outset. That said I loved the little episodes too. The Jimmy one was lovely. And yes, the Doorman stole the show. :)

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