Arc Review: The Edge of Everything by Jeff Giles

Rating: 2 out of 5

Published:January 31st 2017 by Bloomsbury USA Childrens



For the perfect love, what would you be willing to lose?

It’s been a shattering year for seventeen-year-old Zoe, who’s still reeling from her father's shockingly sudden death in a caving accident and her neighbors’ mysterious disappearance from their own home. Then on a terrifying sub-zero, blizzardy night in Montana, she and her brother are brutally attacked in a cabin in the woods—only to be rescued by a mysterious bounty hunter they call X.

X is no ordinary bounty hunter. He is from a hell called the Lowlands, sent to claim the soul of Zoe’s evil attacker and others like him. X is forbidden from revealing himself to anyone other than his prey, but he casts aside the Lowlands’ rules for Zoe. As they learn more about their colliding worlds, they begin to question the past, their fate, and their future.



I'll admit, I expected more. The story is a mix up of fantasy and contemporary and flips between the two. I couldn't tell whether the author was trying too hard at writing one part or another but I just felt they didn't gel together.

Firstly, The EoE is written in parts, this is where you get the splits. The first part is the introduction to Zoe and her family, followed by her encounter with X. The second part carries on with X and his fantasy world of the Lowlands run by it's diabolical Lords. This was my favourite, and I'd have preferred to keep reading. It's followed by a very long-winded and contemporary piece where Zoe and her friends spew pop culture and speak in really stupid accents, obliterating any seriousness I ever had in her. When a boy keeps calling his girl friend (not girlfriend) - 'Dawg' it really grates. In England, to call a girl a 'dawg' no matter how slangy or gangster you make it sound, you're still calling her a 'dog.' Which is very insulting.
The side story is about the relationship between Zoe and her father. Finally we get caught up with X again and his magical powers.

There were two stories in this book and they did not mix well. I can only say if the story had stuck more with Zoe and X and continued on an adventure together I might have been a little more interested. The bland side story about the families upheavals with the father was really only filler to  expand the book into the required number of pages.

It's clear the author has a great deal of knowledge about caving, and also ADHD. There were extensive pages on these subjects.

I'm afraid I ended up skimming to reach the end and it wasn't the ending I was hoping for.
- CBx


About the Author

Jeff Giles recently left Entertainment Weekly, where he was Deputy Managing Editor and oversaw all coverage of movies and books and made the magazine a go-to destination for fans of YA fiction. Prior to EW, Jeff was a writer–editor at Newsweek, where he profiled dozens of authors, musicians and movie stars, and served as a Rohan Army extra in Lord of the Rings while chronicling the trilogy (Peter Jackson shot a close-up of him, then cut it, saying he 'looked silly'.)

Jeff has been a contributing editor at Rolling Stone and written for The New York Times Book Review and the Daily Beast, among other places. He has won a MIN profile-writing award and a feature-writing award from The Deadline Club. Jeff has also moderated a panel with Peter Jackson and James Cameron in front of an audience of 6,000 at Comic-Con, and teaches an annual course in arts writing at N.Y.U.'s graduate school of journalism. He is also the co-author of the non-fiction from TED Books, The Terrorist's Son.

You can find Jeff Giles here:

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