Denton Little’s Deathdate

Lance Rubin. Knopf, $17.99 (352p) ISBN 978-0-553-49696-3
Denton Little lives in a world just like ours, except that most people know the exact day they will die, thanks to advances in the field of “AstroThanatoGenetics.” Denton is a so-called “Early,” because he’s slated to die at age 17. On the day of his funeral, Denton wakes up with a wicked hangover and few memories of the night before, other than that he thinks he broke up with his girlfriend and made out with his best friend’s sister. As Denton’s death date creeps closer, he develops a strange purple rash, begins to have questions about his late mother, and wonders if he’s wasted his short life by trying to live it “normally.” Rubin’s debut doesn’t take itself too seriously—Denton gives a horrible rambling eulogy at his own funeral, and there’s even a coordinated dance number at prom—and the open-ended conclusion necessitates a sequel. But the tweaked contemporary setting, irreverent end-of-life humor, and big, existential questions make this a good pick for fans of John Corey Whaley’s Noggin. Ages 14–up. Agent: Mollie Glick, Foundry Literary + Media. (Apr.)
Reviewed on: 02/09/2015
Release date: 04/14/2015
Genre: Children's
Library Binding - 352 pages - 978-0-553-49697-0
Paperback - 368 pages - 978-0-553-49699-4
Compact Disc - 978-0-553-55599-8
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Audio book sample courtesy of Penguin Random House Audio
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