They Both Die At The End was our book club pick for September 2019 – we really spread the joy with this one (and i’m incredibly late to uploading this review!). It was my second Adam Silvera novel and I can safely confirm they’re all going to be as sad as each other. However, I enjoyed this one a whole lot more.
I read More Happy Than Not last year and found it a little too dark for me, I found it difficult to read and honestly it put me off reading the rest of his novels. Myself and Sophie and some other friends have tickets to meet Adam (and Becky Albertalli) in Manchester at the end of October, so I figured I should give another one of his books and try and we needed up choosing it for book club.
They both Die At The End was probably the book I was most interested in. it follows Rufus and Mateo as they meet on their final day, their death day. They become friends and live their final day the best way they could together. These two characters have never met before this day and are looking for some kind of last friendship out of each other after meeting on an app.
The book is set over their final day, the whole story taking place in just twenty-four hours which I actually very much appreciated. I really enjoy novels set like this and it definitely kept the story moving for me. I found it to be quite fast paced anyway, but having the book set in such a short space of time made it go by quite fast. More so than antthing, I honestly really enjoyed the story and found very little issue with it as a whole, so that made it go by quite quickly as well.
Mateo and Rufus aren’t the only excellent characters in this cast. We hear a lot about their friends and also some characters that lives intertwine with theirs along the way. It’s one of the best novels I’ve read with intertwining storylines, and I really like the way it was done so subtly. We got to expose each character in a lot of depth and we got their whole life story in the day we knew them, and the whole book felt really special because of that.
The idea of DeathCast and basically the whole idea of the book really interested me. The idea that you find out on the day you die that you will die but you don’t know where, when or how really intrigued me. It made me think a lot about what I would do in a similar situation and how society must change to accept something like DeathCast in to their lives.
As we read it for LGBTQ+ book club, I probably should mention the LGBTQ+ aspects of the book. Until the end Mateo and Rufus’ relationship was quite platonic, they were each other’s last friend, however it was mentioned through the book that their sexuality might be something other than straight. Obviously I knew where this was going In the end, as all Adam’s novels tend to have the unexpected love interest to them, However I actually really enjoyed the little bit of romance and desperation at the end as they were both about to die. I thought it was quite well done and it felt very human to need that level of comfort in your last few hours
In short, I absolutely adored this book. The characters were excellent and exciting but also realistic, the storyline was incredibly interesting and the writing was a huge step up from More Happy Than Not. I recommend that everyone reads this book and feels all the things for Rufus and Mateo.