Noggin by John Corey Whaley

NOGGIN. April 8, 2014

A terminally ill leukemia patient, Travis Coates elects to have his head cryogenically frozen in the hopes that he may one day find a body donor. Five years later, Travis is one of only two patients who successfully receive a head transplant, thus making him a healthy sixteen year old boy again. However, while to Travis it seems that time has stopped the day of the surgery, the rest of the world continued in his absence, and he finds that his five year “nap” has drastically changed his life.

I LOVED this book! Whaley’s first novel, Where Things Come Back (2011, and also reviewed on this blog) won the Printz, so I thought I’d give this one a shot. Best decision ever. All the characters are hilarious and easy to relate to, and the plot has a crazy amount of twists and turns. Whaley also tackles some pretty heavy issues — love, family, what it’s like to come back from the dead. You know, the usual. If you read (or are waiting to read) John Green’s Fault in Our Stars (2012), this one might be a good read for you. Travis has the unique perspective of narrating from the eyes of the grieved — that is, what it’s like to be the dead person, instead of the people sad about losing the dead person. Definitely not a story told every day. However, though it’s humorous, the book is never disrespectful. It gives you so much to think about, and you’ll be telling all your friends to read it next. If you’re an award watcher, keep your eye on this one. Noggin (and Whaley) is going places!

This one has a great book trailer! Click here to watch.

Rating: 5/5

For full analysis (including flags and SPOILERS) click here.

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