Somebody Up There Hates You: A Novel

Somebody Up There Hates You: A Novel

4.5 6
by Hollis Seamon
     
 

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“Chemo, radiation, a zillion surgeries, watching my mom age twenty years in twenty months . . . if that’s part of the Big Dude’splan, then it’s pretty obvious, isn’t it? Enough said.”

Smart-mouthed and funny, sometimes raunchy, Richard Casey is in most ways a typical seventeen-year-old boy. Except

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Overview

“Chemo, radiation, a zillion surgeries, watching my mom age twenty years in twenty months . . . if that’s part of the Big Dude’splan, then it’s pretty obvious, isn’t it? Enough said.”

Smart-mouthed and funny, sometimes raunchy, Richard Casey is in most ways a typical seventeen-year-old boy. Except Richie has cancer, and he's spending his final days in a hospice unit. In this place where people go to die, Richie has plans to make the most of the life he has left. Sylvie, the only other hospice inmate under sixty, has a few plans of her own for Richie. What begins as camaraderie quickly blossoms into real love, and this star-crossed pair is determined to live on their own terms, in whatever time remains.

Editorial Reviews

Reviews

“I read Somebody Up There Hates You in one great rush. This novel is funny, harrowing, and wildly profane. It had me crying with laughter on one page and then just plain crying on another.” --Will Schwalbe, author of The End of Your Life Book Club

“This is not just another teen-dying-of-cancer story. Seamon has created a smart-mouthed, funny, occasionally raunchy, very typical teen boy narrating the final days of his life in a way that is unflinching, graphic, at times funny, and at times heartbreaking. Readers will alternate between shaking their heads at his self-centeredness, laughing at his smart mouth, and reaching for tissues as Richard really learns what it means to grow up . . . Emotions are raw and painful but the story is a powerful and life-affirming look at what it means to grow up as your life is ending.” --VOYA

“Even in hospice, a lot can happen in a short time . . . Being near death doesn’t mean abandoning hope for the life that remains.” --Publishers Weekly, starred review

“Each character is vividly drawn, with a sharp, memorable voice that readers will love and remember . . . A fresh, inspiring story.” --Kirkus Reviews, starred review

“Heartfelt . . . The language is raw and even profane at times, but hardly inappropriate given the circumstances . . . This novel is respectful of its serious subject matter, yet is an entertaining and heartening read.” --School Library Journal

“Seamon’s first young-adult novel is a tender, insightful, and unsentimental look at two teens in extremis. It brings light to a very dark place, and in so doing, does its readers a generous service.” --Booklist

“Here are some things Hollis Seamon knows: Life, for one, and the end of life, and how they are always partners. She knows what's sad, and she knows what's funny. And she knows what people need, and how it feels to be someone who worries he might not get to experience life fully before he goes. Knowing all that--and being able to write about it so simply, and beautifully, with such a lack of sentimentality--is already enough for one writer. That she is able to take this knowledge and, with it, inhabit a character--Richard, 17, in a hospice, paradoxically and wonderfully alive--is a kind of miracle.” --Richard Kramer, author of These Things Happen

From the Publisher
“I read Somebody Up There Hates You in one great rush. This novel is funny, harrowing, and wildly profane. It had me crying with laughter on one page and then just plain crying on another.” —Will Schwalbe, author of The End of Your Life Book Club

“This is not just another teen-dying-of-cancer story. Seamon has created a smart-mouthed, funny, occasionally raunchy, very typical teen boy narrating the final days of his life in a way that is unflinching, graphic, at times funny, and at times heartbreaking. Readers will alternate between shaking their heads at his self-centeredness, laughing at his smart mouth, and reaching for tissues as Richard really learns what it means to grow up . . . Emotions are raw and painful but the story is a powerful and life-affirming look at what it means to grow up as your life is ending.” —VOYA

“Even in hospice, a lot can happen in a short time . . . Being near death doesn’t mean abandoning hope for the life that remains.”Publishers Weekly, starred review

“Each character is vividly drawn, with a sharp, memorable voice that readers will love and remember . . . A fresh, inspiring story.” —Kirkus Reviews, starred review

“Heartfelt . . . The language is raw and even profane at times, but hardly inappropriate given the circumstances . . . This novel is respectful of its serious subject matter, yet is an entertaining and heartening read.” —School Library Journal

“Seamon’s first young-adult novel is a tender, insightful, and unsentimental look at two teens in extremis. It brings light to a very dark place, and in so doing, does its readers a generous service.” —Booklist

“Here are some things Hollis Seamon knows: Life, for one, and the end of life, and how they are always partners. She knows what's sad, and she knows what's funny. And she knows what people need, and how it feels to be someone who worries he might not get to experience life fully before he goes. Knowing all that—and being able to write about it so simply, and beautifully, with such a lack of sentimentality—is already enough for one writer. That she is able to take this knowledge and, with it, inhabit a character—Richard, 17, in a hospice, paradoxically and wonderfully alive—is a kind of miracle.” —Richard Kramer, author of These Things Happen

“I read Somebody Up There Hates You in one great rush. This novel is funny, harrowing, and wildly profane. It had me crying with laughter on one page and then just plain crying on another.” —Will Schwalbe, author of The End of Your Life Book Club

“This is not just another teen-dying-of-cancer story. Seamon has created a smart-mouthed, funny, occasionally raunchy, very typical teen boy narrating the final days of his life in a way that is unflinching, graphic, at times funny, and at times heartbreaking. Readers will alternate between shaking their heads at his self-centeredness, laughing at his smart mouth, and reaching for tissues as Richard really learns what it means to grow up . . . Emotions are raw and painful but the story is a powerful and life-affirming look at what it means to grow up as your life is ending.” —VOYA

“Even in hospice, a lot can happen in a short time . . . Being near death doesn’t mean abandoning hope for the life that remains.” Publishers Weekly, starred review

“Each character is vividly drawn, with a sharp, memorable voice that readers will love and remember . . . A fresh, inspiring story.” —Kirkus Reviews, starred review

“Heartfelt . . . The language is raw and even profane at times, but hardly inappropriate given the circumstances . . . This novel is respectful of its serious subject matter, yet is an entertaining and heartening read.” —School Library Journal

“Seamon’s first young-adult novel is a tender, insightful, and unsentimental look at two teens in extremis. It brings light to a very dark place, and in so doing, does its readers a generous service.” —Booklist

“Here are some things Hollis Seamon knows: Life, for one, and the end of life, and how they are always partners. She knows what's sad, and she knows what's funny. And she knows what people need, and how it feels to be someone who worries he might not get to experience life fully before he goes. Knowing all that—and being able to write about it so simply, and beautifully, with such a lack of sentimentality—is already enough for one writer. That she is able to take this knowledge and, with it, inhabit a character—Richard, 17, in a hospice, paradoxically and wonderfully alive—is a kind of miracle.” —Richard Kramer, author of These Things Happen

Kirkus Reviews
When you're surrounded by death, anything can look like a good opportunity. Death is all around 17-year-old Richie Casey. Diagnosed with cancer, he's spending his final days in hospice care in upstate New York. He's weak. He can't eat. He's also a wiseass with a biting sense of humor, and he's persuasive enough to convince even the toughest nurse to let him do what he wants. Seamon's debut for teens follows Richie over 10 days leading up to his 18th birthday. His ne'er-do-well uncle breaks him out for a wild, cathartic, drunken, lust-filled night on the town in a wheelchair to celebrate Cabbage Night (the night before Halloween). He pursues his girlfriend down the hall, Sylvie, who is also dying from cancer. Each character is vividly drawn, with a sharp, memorable voice that readers will love and remember. While there is plenty of death to go around, the novel's tone shifts from dark to light when opportunity presents itself to narrator Richie. Both the characters and readers empathize with his urge to break out and experience life despite his constraints and the consequences that might befall him. His ups and downs are what power the plot, and readers come to learn that Ritchie isn't full of joie de vivre. Instead, he's full of fight, and that's what makes him so admirable and memorable. A fresh, inspiring story about death and determination. (Fiction. 14 & up)

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781616204549
Publisher:
Algonquin Books of Chapel Hill
Publication date:
09/02/2014
Edition description:
Reprint
Pages:
272
Sales rank:
371,837
Product dimensions:
5.40(w) x 8.10(h) x 0.90(d)
Age Range:
14 Years

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