Preteen girl looking at a cell phone with her parents

Family movie night? There's an app for that

Download our new mobile app on iOS and Android.

Parents' Guide to

The Dead and the Gone

By Matt Berman, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 13+

Grim sequel of survival grittier than first installment.

The Dead and the Gone Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this book.

Community Reviews

age 12+

Based on 1 parent review

age 12+

A hard-core book showing the harsh realities of survival of the fittest.

This book is shown from the point of view of Alex Morales, and seventeen year old boy living in New York City. After a meteor hits the moon, moving it closer to earth, chaos strikes. Millions die, including his parents, leaving Alez to look after his two younger sisters. This book is very realistic, though she does hit some unnecssesarily gruesome points. It is well-written, and she uses her adjectives nicely. Fast-paced, and interesting, you are sure to be on the edge of your seat reading this, until you reach the anti-climatic, loose-ends ending.

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (1 ):
Kids say (15 ):

Profoundly disturbing, this book will make many readers want to put it down -- but the relentless story won't let them.

This is not really a sequel, but a stand-alone book covering the same worldwide events from a different point of view than the white, suburban family in Life as We Knew It. This one involves three working-class Puerto Rican teen siblings in Manhattan, whose parents disappear on the first day of the disaster. This change introduces both a grittier level of grimness (the first book didn't have rat-eaten bodies rotting in the streets or stadiums full of naked corpses) and some new issues, such as class differences, and the place of faith and the church community in the face of overwhelming disaster.

Like the first book, though, big, discussion-worthy themes of response to climate change, the collapse of the energy infrastructure, and the role of the individual within the community are carried by a taut, suspenseful, and realistic story of individual and family survival. This, of course, makes it ideal for middle and high school discussion groups.

Book Details

Did we miss something on diversity?

Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.

Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.

See how we rate