Cover Image: The Zero and the One

The Zero and the One

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Member Reviews

Honestly, this book frustrated me. The tone was almost arrogant in its telling and the story wasn't all that compelling. A 'rich white boy kills himself and his friend tries to work though it' has been done before a hundred times and there was nothing that made this book stand out from the others. Referencing Dostoevsky and a fictional German philosopher only made the book feel like it was talking down to the reader, though the reader is in this case, well-read and well-educated. If I wanted to be condescended to in written form, I would read Youtube comments.
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Not a bad book but not really my thing. Good writing and a good idea though.
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A bleak book and one that does the 'suicide is a luxury' trope and the 'twin incest' one. Perhaps these areas are well trod, but the philosophy behind the former was well done, even if I found the latter to be cliched. I found it hard to engage with the narrator as he is a fairly bland / indistinct character, while Zach is the soul. Definitely a novel that invokes thought but possibly not a satisfying or 'enjoyable' read.
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Thank you to the publisher for making an arc available through netgalley.
This is the story of a complicated friendship between Zach, an American studying in England, and Owen the main narrator. Chronologically this tale is split before and after Zach's death alternating back and forth to weave an excellent but disturping meditation on life, love, loss, death and freedom as told in a philosophical excuberance that only youthful idealism can capture.
The author warns at the beginning that this novel isn't for everyone, and while I may agree with him, I definitely throughly enjoyed this tale of brokenness.
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Although categorized as New Adult fiction, this book is not quite like many you’ll find on such shelves. The story contains a shade of innocence and youth yet deeper in is actually quite dark, haunting, and mature. It’s spun with an intelligent writing style that is easy to understand but of a distinctly higher caliber that almost gives the story an added weight and age. Despite it’s modern setting, something about this book calls to an older time and this only adds to the foggy atmosphere and chilling exhilaration of its tale.

A captivating gothic-style novel about friendship, boundaries, and fate, THE ZERO AND THE ONE puts forth questions that force both its characters and its readers to push further and not risk looking back. Mysterious, dark, and addicting, this story is a refreshing addition to the NA genre.
-pooled ink
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A compelling read, for sure. Smart -- maybe too smart for its own good -- and brutal. It's really well written, for sure. But I reached a point where I found the plot's momentum undercut by a feeling it was too contrived, too clever. And not because of the hyperliteracy of the university setting and the dollops of theory. Still I'm quite glad I read this, and I'll urge likeminded readers to get to it.
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