‘They Both Die at the End’ is a must-read for March is Reading Month


IMAGE / Holly Hoskey

‘They Both Die at the End’ by Adam Silvera is a story about death and what it truly means to live.

They Both Die at the End by Adam Silvera is a story about two boys, Mateo and Rufus, who are both told that they are going to die within the next 24 hours.

The boys are informed of their impending death via the “Death-Cast” app, which was developed in this world to let people know when they are going to die, with the purpose being that people knowing it’s their last day means they will live their lives to the fullest.

Due to the title, it would be expected to be a glum tale about death, but truly it is about the developing friendship between Mateo and Rufus and the evolution of their personalities.

These two met via the “Last Friend” app that was developed for people that are informed of their death, referred to as “Deckers,” who have no one to be with on their last day and want companionship.

At first, they do not seem to get along as Mateo is a reserved homebody, while Rufus is more adventurous and a risk-taker.

Though the story has given away its ending via the title, the reader is stuck with the question of when each character is going to meet their end and how this end will come to be.

Through Mateo’s point of view, readers can understand the perspective of someone that feels that they have not done enough to warrant dying at such a young age as both Rufus and Mateo are young adults.

Mateo wishes that he had done more in his life as he feels that he has not experienced enough and was too afraid of being judged by others that he never got to live.

Rufus on the other hand lived life more dangerously, (as when readers are first introduced to him he is beating up his ex-girlfriend’s new boyfriend) but thinks he has lived his life the wrong way.

These conflicting ideologies with Mateo using the “Last Friend” app to live his life and Rufus wanting to repair his life make for an interesting plot as both characters need to work together in order to make their last day one of their best.

Even though this story is not a particularly gloomy tale, it does tackle the meaning of death and what it truly means to live, as both characters realize that today is their last they attempt to live it in a way that they feel will mean something.

Through the use of the different personalities of Mateo and Rufus the author is able to show different perspectives about how one should live life, as Mateo spent most of his life afraid of life and how mortal the human body truly is, but Rufus realized that there is nothing anyone can do about their own mortality so you should live life to the fullest.

Having contrasting characters like this makes the novel more interesting than just two characters fearing death.

Due to the interesting premise and the complex characters the novel drags you in and makes it a worthwhile read.

The novel is a quick read but well-paced, and each character is given enough time to develop, making readers feel for them and wish that they had more time rather than having one day left.

This novel is earned four out of five stars from me, as the character development and premise really make the novel enjoyable and worth a read this March is Reading Month.