Thank you to everyone who recommended I read The Measure by Nikki Erlick. I absolutely loved this book and its message. The story begins with so much despair but ends with so much hope. I loved the introspective concept that had me doing some deep self-reflection. You know it's a good book when you finish feeling renewed and inspired to be kinder and more present in your life. The Measure is added to my list of favorite new releases of 2022 and is one I will recommend often.
An ordinary day is anything but, when everyone around the country wakes up to a box on their doorstep containing a string that indicates how long their life will be. Everyone reacts differently to these boxes. Some open them, while others disregard them. But regardless of a single person's choice, these boxes with strings completely change the world, for the better and for the worse.
The Measure had me hooked from the first few pages. The concept of everyone having the ability to know how long they will live is something to pause over. Do you choose to open your box to learn how long your life will be? Do you use that time and make the most of it? Do you make different choices knowing how long, or how little, time you have left? Do you choose to disregard yours and live your life not knowing when you will die? Do you live contently or on edge never knowing when the end will be?
So many thoughts raced through my mind as I read this story and I connected with each character differently. There is this element of "which came first, the chicken or the egg" that had my brain doing somersaults. Does someone's death happen because the string length dictated it? Or does their death happen because of the choices they make knowing how long their string is? Seriously, think about it....my mind is BLOWN.
The strings bring about intense emotions and opinions that result in prejudice against those with short strings. "Short stringers" could easily be replaced with another marginalized group. The entire concept seems so outlandish and ridiculous that people with short strings are persecuted, but the same can be said for why any marginalized group is discriminated against. The world needs a dose of kindness, compassion and empathy. If everyone approached life that way, it would be a much friendlier place to live. The Measure is a story of family, friendship, hope and determined destiny. It truly left me feeling hopeful and ready to live each day to its fullest because every day we live and breathe is a gift.
"That would mean the world had flipped around, like the ceiling above him, the humans now seeing from God's perspective."
"For a nation, for a world, with no trouble starting wars, and stroking fears, and standing apart, they hadn't forgotten how to come together."