Apr 5, 2012

Deadline by Chris Crutcher

Author:  Chris Crutcher
Publisher:  Greenwillow Books
Publication Date:  September 18th 2007

From Goodreads:

At the beginning of his senior year, Ben Wolf discovers he has an aggressive form of leukemia.  Ben decides to tell no one; he wants his last year of school to be normal.  Only, not telling the truth is the same as lying, and it takes Ben almost a year to figure that out.  And what a year it is.


I don't know why I thought that Deadline would be humorous considering it is a story about death.  It isn't.  Most of it was great, awesome, it just had one tiny little flaw.

First let me praise this book.  I seriously really love this book.  Deadline is about the journey of Ben Wolf's last year alive.  He has leukemia, a aggressive form, that is going to kill him with or without treatment.  All it would do is maybe prolong his life a little.  The Fault in Our Stars is still very much in my thoughts, I read it last month so I was a little worry that the topic was too similar for me to give Deadline a real fair read.  Would I compare it too much, I wondered?  It's different and the same.  Ben's approach is to live his life to the fullest and try to experience as much as he can.  He becomes brave where he was afraid, he becomes confident where he was unsure.  I love the character of Ben, so much.  I understood his reasoning behind his actions, though I didn't agree and as he is talking to Hey-Soos in his dreams he is growing spiritually, as well as seeing things so much more clearly (some great moments).  Ben is opening his eyes to the way of the world, and we are right along for the ride.  We love when he triumphs, we cheer him on when he asking his crush out.  He's a protagonist I dare you not to like.  Deadline is a much more serious book than I imagined I was getting when I bought it.  It was depressing yet had it's moments when your smile couldn't get any bigger.  I think Chris Crutcher has a way of bringing so many different angles to story.  I am a now a fan.

My only problem with Deadline is a secret that comes to light.  It seems that though Ben is keeping a huge secret to himself, two people in his life decide to reveal theirs to him.  One of those secrets I don't know what purpose it had in Deadline.  I wonder why Mr. Crutcher put it in there?  Am I missing something?  There seem to be no reason for it, it didn't change the story, it didn't do anything storywise, so why put it in.  If you have read Deadline and can give me a understanding of it's purpose that would be great. Oh, and it's secret number one told to him that I don't understand.

Despite the one small thing I didn't understand, I absolutely love Deadline.  I thought it was a thought provoking novel with an awesome main character.  Yes, I cried.  I love Ben Wolf.

Goodreads Rating: 4 Stars (really a 4.5)


  1. I'm so curious now about the secret! And also because you recommend it even having read The Fault in Our Stars. I guess I have to request this one from the library!!!

    1. Yes, definitely request it. Then we can discuss the secret and why it was in the book. So worth the read.

  2. I've seen this book before but never looked into it. Sounds like you enjoyed it so I'll give it a shot!


Thanks for commenting!