Top positive review
Solid Middle Grade Story...
Reviewed in the United States on October 30, 2021
This book has two very clear and very different parts. The first half is total middle grade. Obnoxious middle schoolers being obnoxious. Not understanding the gravity behind their towns 'Dead Wednesday' tradition and looking at it as an excuse to have a slacker day at school and get away with whatever they want.
Worm is our quiet and shy protagonist, but he and his group of friends are typical 14-year-old kids who are clueless and immature. I didn't mind the first half of the book, but it is in stark contrast to the second half.
The second half of the book is Worm spending the day with the ghost (or Spiritual Maiden, if you will) of his Dead Wednesday assigned victim, Becca. He matures at lightning speed, and the experience has left him forever changed. He has some really profound thoughts and does a complete 360, becoming an almost entirely different person by the end of the book. Much more somber and wise. It's like this 14-year-old boy has aged 20 years in the span of a few weeks. It kind of felt like reading two different books.
Overall though, I enjoyed the story and its message. If you read it for what it is, a coming-of-age Middle Grade fiction story, then you'll enjoy it.
If you spend the entire time getting all up-in-arms about how this fictional town in this fictional story makes fictional kids assume the identity of fictional teenage accident victims as a way to teach them the gravity and finality of death and to not be so reckless, then you're going to hate this, so you may want to skip it.