The Edge of Everything

Jeff Giles. Bloomsbury, $18.99 (368p) ISBN 978-1-61963-753-5
First-time novelist Giles combines an intense thriller plot with one of the oddest afterlifes in recent fantasy. Seventeen-year-old Zoe, her younger brother Jonah, and their eccentric but loving mother are still hurting a year after Zoe’s father died in a caving accident. Life goes on, but nothing fits right. Then two dangerous people appear at their secluded mountain home: Stan, a vicious thief and murderer, and a hunky bounty hunter Zoe nicknames X, who has been assigned to confront Stan with his crimes and drag him off to the Lowlands for eternal punishment. After Zoe prevents X from completing his mission, they become enamored of each other, but the repercussions of their actions aren’t far off. Zoe’s mutually devoted relationships with her brother, mother, sardonic lesbian friend, Val, are standouts, as is the endearingly oddball dialogue. X—who has no name, never knew his parents, and grew up in the equivalent of Hell—is more of a cipher, though he’ll grow on readers just as he grows on Zoe. It’s an intriguing story that leaves the door open for future books. Ages 14–up. Agent: Jodi Reamer, Writers House. (Jan.)
Reviewed on: 10/17/2016
Release date: 01/31/2017
Ebook - 978-1-61963-752-8
Paperback - 400 pages - 978-1-61963-754-2
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