What It’s About: Smart and original, The Universe Versus Alex Woods is a story about free will, friendship and a little bit of Kurt Vonnegut. When seventeen-year-old Alex Woods is stopped at customs while returning to England, he is alone in the car aside from an urn and 113 grams of marijuana. The whole world now knows Alex’s story, and he is quickly detained after he has a minor epileptic seizure. In his story of all the events of his life leading up to that day, Alex begins when he first made world news by being the second person to survive being hit by a meteor, when he was only ten. The meteor left visible marks on Alex, but also altered his brain by leaving him with epilepsy. In his small English village in Somerset, Alex has all the makings of someone who will never fit in. He’s nerdy, his mother is eccentric, he stands out and isn’t like anyone else. When an unpleasant encounter with the village bullies leads him into elderly Mr Peterson’s life, Alex forms an unlikely friendship.
Who Will Love It: Teens, adults, lovers of Kurt Vonnegut and anyone looking for a thought provoking read.
What I Loved: The characters, the friendship between Alex and Mr Peterson, the story, the heavy issues it covers and how it’s a difficult book to forget.