On September 5, a little after midnight, Death-Cast calls Mateo Torrez and Rufus Emeterio to give them some bad news: They’re going to die today.
Mateo and Rufus are total strangers, but, for different reasons, they’re both looking to make a new friend on their End Day. The good news: There’s an app for that. It’s called the Last Friend, and through it, Rufus and Mateo are about to meet up for one last great adventure—to live a lifetime in a single day.
Contemporary – Young Adult
This book has been making a lot of noise online for a while now and I was very excited to finally get to read it. So as soon as I received it, I started reading. I came out of this book a bit overwhelmed, slightly disappointed and extremely moved and emotional. Because yes, this book has the biggest spoiler ever right in the title. But I still found myself caught up in this story. I got attached to characters I knew were doomed from the start. And, so of course, their story and its end moved me.
What I loved most about They Both Die at the End were the idea and the storytelling. The idea that you know for sure your end is coming is a terrifying and fascinating concept. This book really highlights the importance of living your life to the fullest… Such a simple thing in theory but a much more complex one in reality. Which is why during and after my reading, I found myself contemplating this idea quite a lot. In this way, this book was a sort of wake up call for me. It reminded me that we’re only here for a limited time and that, in the end, we often regret the things we didn’t do.
« Entire lives aren’t lessons, but there are lessons in lives. »
Then, I loved the structure of the novel. it might seem like a weird thing to love but I really felt that the book was well built and thought in its structure. The clock is literally ticking chapters after chapters, which helped me feel the urgency of the situation. That way Silvera brings us along on this countdown with Mateo and Rufus. Furthermore, there are multiple POVs in this novel, which I was not expecting. It surprised me at first, but in the end, I really liked it. It makes us see the bonds, however small, that connect each and every one of these people. It’s also put to great use to build up suspense.
Also, I obviously enjoyed meeting and spending time with Mateo and Rufus, our two main characters. However, I never connected with them the way I had hoped to (probably because we only had one day with them). That was frustrating for me, and this lack of connexion came in the way of a full emotional breakdown at the end. I also feel like the hype was so intense with They Both Die at the End that my expectations were extremely high. That’s a sure recipe for disappointment.
« …stories can make someone immortal as long as someone else is willing to listen. »
Finally, I have to say that out of the two Mateo is the one that moved me the most. Not that I didn’t like Rufus, he was just never my favorite one. It’s worth mentioning that the French translation might have something to do with that. But either way, I had a great time reading They Both Die at the End and although it might not be a new favorite of mine, I sure am glad I’ve read it.