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Ray Vs the Meaning of Life

Grandma’s Last Will and Testament names Ray to inherit the trailer park. It’s a million-dollar estate with one hitch: to prove he’s not as aimless as he seems, Ray must discover the meaning of life by the end of the month. (She left the answer in an envelope.) If he fails, the camp goes to his estranged family. How does anyone find the meaning of life while running a park full of misfit miners, would-be truck racers, and one demanding little girl? There’s a bear too. A grizzly. Maybe that’ll help?

Finalist

Plot/Idea: 9 out of 10
Originality: 10 out of 10
Prose: 9 out of 10
Character/Execution: 9 out of 10
Overall: 9.25 out of 10

Assessment:

Plot: This ably plotted and entertaining novel flies along at a breakneck pace, with the author throwing the most outrageous forms of adversity at Ray at every turn.

Prose: Stewart’s prose careens and rollercoasters on each page. The writing is thoroughly enjoyable.

Originality: Ray’s adventures are fun, wacky, and vaguely reminiscent of the Scott Pilgrim novels and the Diary of a Wimpy Kid series. Nonetheless, this story is wholly original. Young readers will be delighted.

Character Development: Ray is a fully formed and fun character. Readers will definitely get to know him and appreciate the way he changes over the course of the book.

Blurb: Stewart’s fast-paced, darkly hilarious novel will cause readers to chuckle, tear up, hug their moms, and cross their fingers for a sequel (or graphic novel adaptation) sometime in the foreseeable future.

Date Submitted: May 02, 2018

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