Author: Gavriel Savit
Publisher: Knopf Books for Young Readers
Released: November 17th, 2020
I received a copy of The Way Back in exchange for a fair and honest review.
This is my first time reading anything by Gavriel Savit – however, I’ve been hearing SO many nice things about The Way Back that I just knew I had to give this novel a try. Plus, this adventure is being positively compared to writing by Neil Gaiman and Phillip Pullman, so how could I possibly ever resist?
Demons and the dead are everywhere – though most stay contained in their own little world. With few excuses to ever cross the border, that is where they have little choice but to remain. That is, until a wedding invites all – no exceptions. That sounds like exactly the sort of excuse they have been looking for.
Two teenagers, both vastly different in experiences and temperaments, have found themselves on the wrong side of this particular adventure. Now their only hope is to find their way back, as the title itself states.
“She had seen the Angel of Death.
And her instrument was not a knife.
It was a spoon.”
The Way Back is arguably one of the most enchanting novels I’ve read in quite some time. The writing itself seemed to suck me in, while that brilliant world full of rich details kept me thoroughly trapped.
I mean that almost literally. It took days for my brain to be free of the world described within these pages. Some would call that a book hangover, and honestly, they wouldn’t be wrong. But it felt different than that at the same time. There was just something so…captivating about the story and the setting itself.
“The young were nervous. The old were reflective.
Tupik was going to bury its dead.”
While the world itself (and the demons within), were plenty fascinating, that isn’t the only thing I loved about this novel. For example, I adored the differing perspectives of the main character, Yehuda Leib and Bluma.
Their journeys were fascinating, and they felt so vibrant and alive. This is a story I’d honestly suggest to any teenager, young adult, or even adult to give a go. I can see why this world was so compared to the worlds created by Neil Gaiman and Phillip Pullman – it lives up to that statement. At least, it certainly did for me.