Wednesday, March 04, 2009

What Mrs N's Been Reading - Antsy Does Time

Just finished Neal Shusterman's Antsy Does Time. It's a companion to The Schwa Was Here which I enjoyed a lot. The main character, Anthony "Antsy" Bonano is now in high school. After both he and Antsy witness and get pretty freaked out by, a freak accidental death during the Thanksgiving Day parade, a fellow student, Gunnar Umlaut, tells Antsy that he has a terminal illness and has maybe 6 months to live. In trying to think of something he can do for Gunnar, Antsy tells him that he'll give him a month of his life, symbolically, of course. Gunnar jokingly asks for a contract to that effect and Antsy types one up and gives it to him. It's a quirky inside joke that made Gunnar feel a little better. Simple enough. But word gets out and this takes on a life of it's own, soon spinning out of control with the student council vowing to get enough people to sign contracts to get Gunnar to retirement age. But of course, things aren't quite what they seem as Antsy tries to figure out the strange things that are going on in Gunnar's family. There's also a Grapes-of-Wrath-inspired dust bowl, a gorgeous Swedish girl who seems to actually like Antsy, and a mistake that lands Antsy on the front page of the New York Post. Yes, it has it's serious moments, but this book is laugh-out-loud funny in many places, purely because Antsy is such a wonderfully written character. If you liked the Schwa, you'll love this one as well. Highly recommended for all ages.


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