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  • Published: New York : Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2005.
  • Year Published: 2005
  • Edition: 1st ed.
  • Description: viii, 275 p. ; 22 cm.
  • Language: English
  • Format: Book

Reading Level

  • Lexile: 720

ISBN/Standard Number

  • 0374320918 :

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Elsewhere

by Zevin, Gabrielle.

There is currently 1 available

Where To Find It

Call number: Teen Fiction

Available Copies: West Teen

Additional Details

After fifteen-year-old Liz Hall is hit by a taxi and killed, she finds herself in a place that is both like and unlike Earth, where she must adjust to her new status and figure out how to "live." Is it possible to grow up while getting younger? Welcome to Elsewhere. It is warm, with a breeze, and the beaches are marvelous. It's quiet and peaceful. You can't get sick or any older. Curious to see new paintings by Picasso? Swing by one of Elsewhere's museums. Need to talk to someone about your problems? Stop by Marilyn Monroe's psychiatric practice. Elsewhere is where fifteen-year-old Liz Hall ends up, after she has died. It is a place so like Earth, yet completely different. Here Liz will age backward from the day of her death until she becomes a baby again and returns to Earth. But Liz wants to turn sixteen, not fourteen again. She wants to get her driver's license. She wants to graduate from high school and go to college. And now that she's dead, Liz is being forced to live a life she doesn't want with a grandmother she has only just met. And it is not going well. How can Liz let go of the only life she has ever known and embrace a new one? Is it possible that a life lived in reverse is no different from a life lived forward? This moving, often funny book about grief, death, and loss will stay with the reader long after the last page is turned.

Community Reviews

Another recommendation

I really liked this book. As the inside cover says, this book will "will stay with the reader long after the last page is turned." The idea of elsewhere is cool and interesting and you will feel as though you really know the characters. If you liked this book, I would also recommend "Heaven Looks A Lot Like The Mall" by Wendy Mass.

Elsewhere

Elsewhere is a great book, I recommend it.

Imaginative Story

This book was creative imaginative, and emotional. It's on the brink of fantasy, with enough real-world connections and relationships to be relatable. It's a great weekend read. This book deals with the subject of death, but it's not to "heavy" or deep. I think that it mixes fantasy/sci-fi with rational, real world situations, and that makes for a good mix!

Amazing!

I really like Elsewhere. Liz is a great. She seems like a normal 15-year-old girl, and she's relatable. I absolutely loved the idea of the book, and I fell in love with it after I actually read it.

Death and Aging Backwards

I've always loved books about aging backwards. I've read a few now - this one, one about a space trip gone wrong, (The Constellation of Sylvie by Rod Townley) and another about an anti-aging advancement that went out of control (Turnabout). Sadly, I can't remember the names of these books right now. In these not-Elsewhere books, their ageing backwards was unnatural - everyone around them was aging forwards, just as they were supposed to be. In Elsewhere, you're supposed to age backward. It gave the book a different vibe.

This book is about Liz, who died at age 15. It's about her arriving to Elsewhere, coming to terms with her death, and learning to love again. I tried to get a more complete summary for you, but neither the publisher's site nor the book was much help. Here's what us.maximillian.com said, "Is it possible to grow up while getting younger?" It's a valid question and strongly relates to the plot of Elsewhere, but it isn't much summary wise. The back of my paperback edition has an excerpt from the book and a few sentences:
How can fifteen-year-old Liz let go of the only life she has ever known and embrace a new one? Is it possible that a life lived in reverse is no different from a life lived forward?

Yep. That's cryptic for you. Good thing I know another way to get plot info - reading the book!
Wait! I found a summary on the publisher's website after all! Here it is:

Welcome to Elsewhere. It is warm, with a breeze, and the beaches are marvelous. It’s quiet and peaceful. You can’t get sick or any older. Curious to see new paintings by Picasso? Swing by one of Elsewhere’s museums. Need to talk to someone about your problems? Stop by Marilyn Monroe’s psychiatric practice.
Elsewhere is where fifteen-year-old Liz Hall ends up, after she has died. It is a place so like Earth, yet completely different. Here Liz will age backward from the day of her death until she becomes a baby again and returns to Earth. But Liz wants to turn sixteen, not fourteen again. She wants to get her driver’s license. She wants to graduate from high school and go to college. And now that she’s dead, Liz is being forced to live a life she doesn’t want with a grandmother she has only just met. And it is not going well. How can Liz let go of the only life she has ever known and embrace a new one? Is it possible that a life lived in reverse is no different from a life lived forward?
This moving, often funny book about grief, death, and loss will stay with the reader long after the last page is turned.

I love love love love this book. I'm writing this review after I finished it for the second time, and the book made me cry happy-sad tears twice. I guess I got so connected to Liz's emotions that I felt her pain? I don't know - I'm not sure. They were beautiful tears.

There's sort of a love triangle - it seems like most new books come equipped with love triangles - but for once the main character isn't at the point. I won't write who's in it, but know that said love triangle was the root of what made me cry 1/2 of those beautiful tears.

Let’s talk about Liz. She's part angsty, part lost, part homesick, and part found. She's loved by her grandmother and her friends. She works well with animals. She's curious and nice but wishes it was still possible for her to grow up. She makes lots of dumb choices, but you just have to love her anyway.

I really like Elsewhere. It's a place where you don't have to work for money - you choose to work to fulfill your life. It's a place where you're not cut off, but you begin something new. I also really love this book. I'm going to give it all 5 stars.

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