I Am the Messenger - Markus Zusak Ed Kennedy is an underage cabbie who has done nothing extraordinary with his life, and up to this point, he has had no plans to do so. Then one day while waiting in line at the bank with his friends, a robbery takes place and Ed inadvertently stops it. He’s proclaimed a hero by the media and fellow townspeople but his friends and mother are not impressed. They know that Ed is still just a normal guy with no ambition and no future prospects who’s totally okay with that. A few days after the bank robbery, Ed starts receiving playing cards (specifically, Aces) with anonymous, handwritten notes on them in his letterbox. Ed must work his way through the four suits in order to help and save other people’s lives and, in the process, give meaning to his own.

"Protect the diamonds
Survive the clubs
Dig deep through the clubs
Feel the hearts"

52 chapters (with a surprising bonus section at the end), 4 suits, 4 aces. I love the organization and layout of this novel and how’s it’s based on a pack of cards. You’d think that it’d get old or monotonous knowing that there will be 4 aces in 4 different suits (and you can guess the theme of each), but Zusak keeps it interesting with lots of twists and turns. Zusak has become one of my new favorite authors ever since I read The Book Thief (one of my favorite books) and I wasn’t at all disappointed with his writing style and voice in this book. It’s not nearly as strong as it was in The Book Thief, but I’m thinking that was probably his best work to date. I was a bit disappointed with the ending in this one though. I loved it up until that last little bonus section. All I could think when I finished it was, “what the f*ck?” Still, I loved the message of the book and its hopefulness. I would definitely recommend this book, but I’d also suggest that you read The Book Thief first so you can get the full effect of what Zusak can do.