4 out of 4 stars
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Final Notice by Van Fleisher is a story written to highlight some of the most controversial topics in our society today such as gun control, immigration and racism. It centers around several different groups of people in different parts of America, but they are all facing the same dilemmas. Final Notice is about the invention of a sports watch/ health monitor that tracks all of the normal values that other watches do but has the unique ability to predict when you will die. The “Final Notice” feature can be set to 10, 20 or 30 days and the story tells how different people handle the news of their impending death. From doing various acts of good deeds to murder, people respond differently. Adding to this new found knowledge, there’s an increase in gun owners due to the NRA catering to the senior citizen demographic by given them discounts. This combination of knowledge and guns soon become catastrophic. Now the scientist behind this brilliant watch is torn between scrapping their greatest invention ever and dealing with the mounting deaths as its result.
I rated this novel 4 out of 4 stars. The author made very clear in his forward his intent of this book to call attention to the hot topics of the treatment of senior citizens and gun control. I think he definitely got his point across in the novel. He brought attention to so many more issues such as treatment of immigrants. He displayed several instances in the story where immigrants were verbally abused. He shed light on crooked politicians who passed laws, even if they didn’t believe in them, based on large donations from organizations pushing their own agenda such as the NRA. He spoke on many other things from the consequences of lax gun regulations to school shootings.
It was clearly evident that this book was just recently written and spoke of current politics when one character quotes “building walls, banning people based on religion, preventing groups of people from voting...” (location 1217) Ahmed even made a comment about “fake news” in one of their heated dinner conversations. I enjoyed these aspects of the story because I hold a similar stance on most social issues broached in this novel. I thought the novel was very entertaining. It wasn’t super fast nor was it too slow. It also had minimal grammatical errors.
One thing I would liked to have seen was at least one main character with a right wing point of view. The story was definitely one sided with everyone from the scientists to the consumers, having the same ideologies concerning the issues noted. I do, however, believe this was done purposely by the author to get his point across and it took nothing away from the story for me.
Overall, I think this was a well thought out, multidimensional story. The author made plain his purpose so I think one would be remiss in skipping his forward and prologue. I think anyone could appreciate this story, no matter their political affiliation or beliefs. There are a couple of school shootings but no gory details. I think the author did a great job and would like to read more from him.
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