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This Is Where the World Ends

Review

This Is Where the World Ends

Imagine waking up in the hospital with no recollection of what occurred and how you got there, only to find out that your best friend has disappeared and all fingers point to you. It's not a very lovely story to tell, but this is the story of Janie and Micah, two best friends since elementary school who pretend not to be friends at school for fear of rumors. In Amy Zhang’s second novel, THIS IS WHERE THE WORLD ENDS, readers follow Janie’s memories of the past and Micah’s present time experiences as he desperately searches for her. Though an unlikely duo --- Janie is the popular girl at school and Micah is the nerdy guy who no one really pays attention to --- the two have a long and tight-knit relationship that is largely a secret to the rest of the world.

"I really liked how Zhang allowed readers to see the growth/change in Janie and Micah's relationship with one another and as individuals."

With every chapter or two switching perspectives and time, Janie in the past and Micah in the present, I honestly found myself a bit confused for the first few chapters. However, this structure does an excellent job of tying the entire story together once you become accustomed to it. Janie’s sections bring us to the day of her disappearance, giving us enough information to understand what she and Micah went through together, just as Micah discovers what really happened that day. It all plays together like a chorus and a verse.

I really liked how Zhang allowed readers to see the growth/change in Janie and Micah's relationship with one another and as individuals. It was, overall, a very effective technique for Zhang to use in her writing and created a more unique flow to her story. Throughout the book, many phrases and ideas are repeated over and over again. This repetition forces readers to really see what Zhang is trying to say about the characters and is also a very important hint to understanding their dynamic. I enjoyed reading this book largely because of the numerous hints that were placed throughout the novel and how they were all finally connected in the end.

I would recommend this book to anyone who enjoys mystery novels --- although it’s not quite as mysterious or difficult to solve like the Nancy Drew series --- or anyone who is a fan of complicated romance novels.

Reviewed by Alyssa L., Teen Board Member on March 22, 2016

This Is Where the World Ends
by Amy Zhang