Title: They Both Die at the End
Author: Adam Silvera
Date Published: September 5th 2017
ADD TO GOODREADS
New York Times bestselling author Adam Silvera reminds us that there’s no life without death and no love without loss in this devastating yet uplifting story about two people whose lives change over the course of one unforgettable day.
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.
In the tradition of Before I Fall and If I Stay, They Both Die at the End is a tour de force from acclaimed author Adam Silvera, whose debut, More Happy Than Not, the New York Times called “profound.”
Ever since Lockdown has started, I found myself listening to audiobooks more! After listening to Rogue Princess, I decided to listen to They Both Die at the End next. Death-Cast calls 2 characters, Mateo and Rufus. They tell them that they are going to die today. Knowing that they are now Deckers (someone who only 24 hours to live), they decide to use the Last Friends app which helps them find people they might want to spend their last day with. Mateo and Rufus meet through Last Friends and spend their last hours alive together.
The narrators for this book are amazing! They put so much emotion into the story and it kept me intrigued to see if they actually do both die at the end!
Mateo and Rufus
Mateo is really shy and finds it hard to stick up for himself at the start. He stayed at home most of the time, keeping to himself and only really had his best friend, Lydia, to talk to. Seeing his character development throughout the story was lovely. We gradually see him come out of his shell and start to become adventurous and confident. The friendship he has with Penny is so special and you can see he adores Lydia’s daughter, Penny.
In contrast, Rufus is such an adventurous soul and enjoys what life has to offer. I love how he’s so encouraging and he inspires Mateo to live his day as a Decker doing things he wouldn’t have even thought he would do. He has an amazing group of friends, The Plutos, consisting of Malcolm, Tagoe and Aimee, who you can tell adore him. I wasn’t a big fan of Aimee though. She put Rufus and Mateo in a dangerous position knowing that the event would’ve happened eventually and preventing it from happening.
Mateo and Rufus’ relationship is heartwarming, however, I did feel like it went from 0 to 100 quite quickly, though. At the same time, I understand that as Deckers, emotions must be really high and feelings are undeniably intense when you’ve literally been told you’re going to die in a couple of hours. I love that this book is very diverse in terms of race/ethnicities and that there’s LGBTQ+ rep in this book, specifically bi rep.
The Sub-plots + Death-Cast
If I’m being honest, I wasn’t a big fan of the subplots. Some of them linked to the main plot with a few indirect interactions with Mateo and Rufus. It was interesting seeing how most of the characters came across each other without even realising. However, if these sub-plots weren’t included, I don’t think it would’ve added much substance to the story.
I was also disappointed that the story never mentioned the reasoning behind why and how Death-Cast came to be. Why and how did Death-Cast come to be? How does Death-Cast know you’re a Decker? None of this was addressed and it impacted my interest to the story. I was really hoping it would be revealed, but it’s just a mystery.
A Deep Think Piece
They Both Die at The End challenged me to think about what I would do if I was told I’d die on a specific day. As cliche as it sounds, it reminded me that I should live my last days like they’re my last. Explore what the world has to offer, learn as much as you can and appreciate your loved ones. None of us knows when our last day on Earth will be. But I hope we all have the feeling that we’re content with how we have lived our life so far.