Synopses & Reviews
In one month Jeremy Fink will turn thirteen. But does he have what it takes to be a teenager? He collects mutant candy, he won't venture more than four blocks from his apartment if he can help it, and he definitely
doesn't like surprises. On the other hand, his best friend, Lizzy, isn't afraid of anything, even if that might get her into trouble now and then.
Jeremy's summer takes an unexpected turn when a mysterious wooden box arrives in the mail. According to the writing on the box, it holds the meaning of life! Jeremy is supposed to open it on his thirteenth birthday. The problem is, the keys are missing, and the box is made so that only the keys will open it without destroying what's inside. Jeremy and Lizzy set off to find the keys, but when one of their efforts goes very wrong, Jeremy starts to lose hope that he'll ever be able to open the box. But he soon discovers that when you're meeting people named Oswald Oswald and using a private limo to deliver unusual objects to strangers all over the city, there might be other ways of finding out the meaning of life.
Lively characters, surprising twists, and thought-provoking ideas make Wendy Mass's latest novel an unforgettable read.
VOYA Top Shelf for Middle School Readers 2013 list
* "Quirky, charming and life-affirming, supernatural style."
—Kirkus Reviews, starred review
"With a strong mystery at its core and fantasy elements, this has potential to appeal to a wide range of readers."
"Fans of Lois Lowry's Giver quartet will most likely appreciate this imaginative tale."
"The fantastical nature of Departures allows the book to stay lighthearted, even as Gabriela explores some of her deepest fears and existential questions. . . .The Wrap-Up List is likely to appeal to fans of the end-of-life issues genre."
Just before his thirteenth birthday, Jeremy Fink receives a keyless locked box--set aside by his father before his death five years earlier--that purportedly contains the meaning of life.
Everything changes when the box arrives--a posthumous gift from Jeremy's father who died five years ago.
Without the keys to open the special box his father left for him to open on his thirteenth birthday, Jeremy fears that he will never get to know the meaning of life that awaits to be revealed, but through a series of events to locate the keys, Jeremy learns a great deal about what life truly is through his own personal experiences and strange encounters.
When 16-year old Gabriela's death is foretold by a letter, she must complete her "wrap-up list" before she's forced to say goodbye forever in this smart, funny, compelling, and mysterious young adult novel.
In this modern-day suburban town, one percent of all fatalities come about in the most peculiar way. Deaths—eight-foot-tall, silver-gray creatures—send a letter (“Dear So-and-So, your days are numbered”) to whomever is chosen for a departure, telling them to wrap up their lives and do the things they always wanted to do before they have to “depart.” When sixteen-year-old Gabriela receives her notice, she is, of course devastated. Will she kiss her crush Sylvester before its too late? Friendship, first love, and fantasy artfully mesh in this magically realistic world that ultimately celebrates life.
About the Author
Wendy Mass is the New York Times
bestselling author of The Candymakers
the ALA Schneider Family Award winner A Mango-Shaped Space, Leap Day
, Jeremy Fink and the Meaning of Life
, Heaven Looks a Lot Like the Mall,
and Every Soul a Star
. Wendy lives in New Jersey
with her husband and their twins. Her website is www.wendymass.com.