Tuesday, May 22, 2018

Book review - Neanderthal Opens the Door to the Universe

Title: Neanderthal Opens the Door to the Universe
Author: Preston Norton
Genre: realistic fiction
Similar books: Grendel's Guide to Love and War by A.E. Kaplan
                      Losers Take All by David Klass
So much to discuss

Summary (provided by publisher): Cliff Hubbard is a huge loser. Literally. His nickname at Happy Valley High School is Neanderthal because he's so enormous-6'6" and 250 pounds to be exact. He has nobody at school, and life in his trailer-park home has gone from bad to worse ever since his older brother's suicide.
There's no one Cliff hates more than the nauseatingly cool quarterback, Aaron Zimmerman. Then Aaron returns to school after a near-death experience with a bizarre claim: while he was unconscious he saw God, who gave him a list of things to do to make Happy Valley High suck less. And God said there's only one person who can help: Neanderthal.
To his own surprise, Cliff says he's in. As he and Aaron make their way through the List, which involves a vindictive English teacher, a mysterious computer hacker, a decidedly unchristian cult of Jesus Teens, the local drug dealers, and the meanest bully at HVHS, Cliff feels like he's part of something for the first time since losing his brother. But fixing a broken school isn't as simple as it seems, and just when Cliff thinks they've completed the List, he realizes their mission hits closer to home than he ever imagined.
Razor sharp, moving, and outrageously funny, Neanderthal Opens the Door to the Universe is an unforgettable story of finding your place in an imperfect world. 

My opinion: This is a book I'd love to discuss with a group. I want to talk about the mission, the goals and the vagueness of their language, the steps that Cliff and Aaron take. I want to discuss forms of awakening and dealing with grief, of brokenness , our portrayal and perception. THere's a great deal one can unpack from this relatively straightforward novel. While the plot is somewhat predictable and the characters are not terribly complex, it's very readable and has plenty one can consider.

More information: Neanderthal Opens the Door to the Universe releases June 5.
Advanced Reader Copy provided by NetGalley.

No comments:

Post a Comment