Sunday, October 19, 2014

Review: I Am The Messenger

I Am The Messenger by Markus Zusak
Publisher: Knopf Books for Young Readers
Release Date: February 8th, 2005
Source: Library 
Date Read: 10/13/14 to 10/14/14
357 Pages

Ed Kennedy is an underage cabdriver without much of a future. He's pathetic at playing cards, hopelessly in love with his best friend, Audrey, and utterly devoted to his coffee-drinking dog, the Doorman. His life is one of peaceful routine and incompetence until he inadvertently stops a bank robbery.

That's when the first ace arrives in the mail. That's when Ed becomes the messenger. Chosen to care, he makes his way through town helping and hurting (when necessary) until only one question remains: Who's behind Ed's mission?

This book is a 2005 Michael L. Printz Honor Book and recipient of five starred reviews.
One of the most unique books I've read. It's pretty much up to par with The Book Thief, it's just that this isn't something I would pick up, but in the end I loved it.

No, but seriously, I had to talk through the brilliance that was the ending with my book club, and I completely understand it now. The ending itself deserves a couple of rereads, because Zusak is incredibly brilliant with how he wrote this book (have I used that word enough? "brilliant")

Anyways, let's start with the basics. (Even with recapping the summary, I'm remembering all the little hints here and there throughout the book).

First off, we have Ed Kennedy. He's normal, average, ordinary guy that really doesn't do anything with his life. Until he gets a playing card in the mail. The Ace of Diamonds. And on this card, there's a list of addresses. And of course someone is watching him. To sum up, Ed is acting as a messenger, where he goes and stalks visits each of the addresses, and sends the people living there a message.

“My full name's Ed Kennedy. I'm nineteen. I'm an underage cab driver. I'm typical of many of the young men you see in this suburban outpost of the city -- not a whole lot of prospects or possibility. That aside, I read more books than I should, and I'm decidedly crap at sex and doing my taxes. Nice to meet you. ”

First, it's a rapist, constantly abusing his wife every night after coming back from the pub. But then, there's also the sweet lonely old lady, waiting for her husband to come back from the war. There's the priest as well, who just can't seem to get enough people to come to his sermon.

Four aces. Four clues on each card. Sixteen messages.

I have to admit, although Ed seemed like an ordinary guy, but he changed slowly every time he helped someone else. And before I completely spoil the book by accident, let's talk about the characters! Literally every one of these characters Ed meets connected with me in one way or another. And if you think that this is just a book about some guy helping out random people and his friends with their lives, you are wrong. Sure, that's part of the book, but there's more to it than that. Seriously. I Am The Messenger made me revaulate my own life.

“Maybe everyone can live beyond what they're capable of.”

These characters only took like wut, maybe 1/16 of the book each? And yet I still fell in love with all of them and they left LASTING IMPRESSIONS. Only you, Markus Zusak, can write this way, gah. I want to go visit random people now and perform random acts of kindness.

It's just nice to read about all the little things that matter. And not only that either. IT'S JUST THIS BOOK. If I didn't know Markus Zusak wrote the Book Thief, I would have not connected the two books together. Both of them are completely different, but in a good way.

THE ENDING. It's why I gave it five stars.

And that's all I'm telling you, because the ending is worth it.
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