Finn Easton believes that he’s trapped in his father’s book. That he’s not living his own life. It all started when a dead horse, destined for a rendering plant, fell from a truck as it crossed a bridge. The horse landed on young Finn and his mother, killing her and injuring him. Years later, Finn suffers from epilepsy because of the accident. Finn’s dad created a character in his popular book, The Lazarus Door, using Finn’s unique scar from the horse incident, his epilepsy and his heterochromatic eyes. Now Finn just wants to figure out who he is. Finn’s best friend, Cade, and his girlfriend, Julia, try to get him to see that he’s much more than the boy in the book.
I have a deep, abiding love of Smith’s writing. Each novel is singular. His teen characters are smart and real. Their voices authentic. Finn measures time in miles traveled by the Earth in orbit–20 miles a second–and muses about the universe as a knackery endlessly reusing atoms. The publishing industry is looking for the next (or another) John Green. Andrew Smith has been here all along, and, honestly, I like him more than Green.