The Measure

You must sign in to see if this title is available for request.
Pub Date 7 Jul 2022 | Archive Date Not set

Talking about this book? Use #THEMEASURE #NetGalley. More hashtag tips!


Description

Your fate arrives in a box on your doorstep. Do you open it?

It seems like just another morning.

You make a cup of tea. Check the news. Open the front door.

On your doorstep is a box.

Inside the box is the exact number of years you have left to live.

The same box appears on every doorstep across the world.

Do you open yours?

THE MEASURE

IT’S THE DECISION OF A LIFETIME.

Your fate arrives in a box on your doorstep. Do you open it?

It seems like just another morning.

You make a cup of tea. Check the news. Open the front door.

On your doorstep is a box.

Inside the...


Available Editions

EDITION Ebook
ISBN 9780008491536
PRICE £6.99 (GBP)

Available on NetGalley

NetGalley Shelf App (PDF)
Send To Kindle (PDF)
Download (PDF)

Average rating from 49 members


Featured Reviews

OHMYGOODNESS.WOW. This is absolutely incredible storytelling. So thought provoking, and how the characters deal with this and society in so many ways is fascinating. Absorbed this in one sitting and could not sit still. A fantastic group of characters who delight, are admirable, sometimes scared but mostly have warm hearts. Told from quite a few different viewpoints but not too many. Emotional, powerful, moving.

Was this review helpful?

WOW just WOW i can't even with this book, where do I begin? This is such an interesting premise that really makes the reader think and question things, would they open the box or not, it is something I have often wondered - whether I would like to know when I was going to die, but then faced with that decision I am not sufre whether I actually would or not. It is an emotive and heartfelt read that i couldnt put down, I was gripped straight away. A really enjoyable book that I will read over and over.

Was this review helpful?

When I started reading this novel, I thought this was strictly dystopian, for the concept of knowing your fate was truly highly extraordinary. But this book was so much more than that! It touched down on issues of love and morality in the best possible way. A great read!

Was this review helpful?

When I seen this book advertised on Twitter for request on NetGalley I KNEW I just had to read it… BUT nothing could have prepared me for what I lay inside. The Measure Is one hell of an emotional rollercoaster… it had me on the edge of my seat, happy, sad and by the end in tears. This story was exhilarating and a CRACKING start on the author journey for Erlick – this is definitely right up there with one of the BEST debut novels I have ever read. Each character in this story is so life-like you instantly connect with them, you live their life with them hoping and praying that more can be done that they can be helped – you love them like a friend or a sibling someone you don’t want to loose… Yet the rest of the world turns crazy – but the question really is does it matter how long you have left. It has always been decided for us has it not? BUT – what would you do? Would you look inside your box and find out the answers to your life’s length or would you live on with no regrets? I would definitely take a read and request this book OR wait for the pre-order link and buy it!! This is going to be one HOT BOOK for 2022!!

Was this review helpful?

"The measure of your life lies within" On a morning just like any other, a small wooden box appears on the doorstep of every household on the planet - from mansions to maisonettes, shacks to tents, every adult has one. Inside, just a name and a piece of string that will tell you how long you have left to live. In that moment, the whole world is changed. Dreams suddenly seem impossible, people taking things slowly are realising they've run out of time, people's faith is failing and society as we know it is collapsing. The 'short-stringers' and 'long-stringers' are divide and the young wait for the boxes to arrive. Would you open the box if you could? And what would do once you did? "When we think about the greatest love stories ever written, we aren't judging them by their length." The Measure is truly a one-of-a-kind read. I'd tell you the usual 'read this if you're fans of this other book' but this definitely is something unique. Told from multiple point of views, each one intertwining and weaving together inexplicitly in a tapestry of lives. There's reporter Nina and her girlfriend Maura who have suddenly realised till death to us part is coming sooner than alter, Amie who's read enough fantasy to know never to open a magic box, Hank who can't cope with the patients expecting him to cure them from a short string, Jack and Javier who are just trying to survive military school without dealing with the new restrictions on short-stringers - and many more characters, each bringing their own dynamic and unique outlook on the unfolding crisis. Despite having such a large and vibrant cast, the story remained easy to follow and completely engrossing. Fully immersive, thoughtful and clever, The Measure was a stunning exploration into the human condition, into the fragility and the strength of humanity - heartbreaking and joyous all at once. Erlick also absolutely nailed the inclusivity and representation all the way through, showing how the mystery boxes not only affected society as a whole, but women, people of colour and members of the LGBT+ community. A stunning, electrifying debut - enthralling, mysterious and thought-provoking. This book will make you think about life differently every time you turn a page.

Was this review helpful?

Many thanks to Netgalley and the publishers for this arc. Themes such as life and death intrigue me, especially the search for what gives our life meaning. The Measure has an unique hook and looks at these questions without once comprising on characters and plot. One day the whole world wakes up and finds boxes on their doorsteps, with a measure of how long they have left. People with long strings will have a long life. Those with short strings have a certain numbers of years. The books follows about eight characters, some of whom are related, and you see the world unfolding through their eyes. It might seem like a lot of characters, but you they go in and out of each other’s lives, and it really is not as confusing as it seems. At the start of the novel people think the boxes is an elaborate hoax, some think a return to the old ages when Gods would come down. It doesn’t take for the whole situation to become political and socially dangerous as those with short strings are fired from jobs due to the fact that they’ll die soon, and they’re being dumped by their partners cause it’s easier than being with them. But more than that it’s about people, and how we connect with each other, and how we love. In the end it shouldn’t matter how long your string is. Truly a wonderful read!!!!! I loved it. 🤗👍👍

Was this review helpful?

When I first read the premise of The Measure I knew I had to read it. What a unique, thrilling and captivating idea. I had to know what it was all about. And it didn't disappoint. Right from the beginning. I was obsessed with deciding if I would open my box or not. Would I want to know so that I could plan my last years well - give up work and do as I like - or would it make my last years absolute hell - scared to lose a minute of the time I had left on earth? What about my children who being adults would have theirs? Could I deal with the agony if they didn't have a long string and would die before me? Or would it be worse to keep the boxes closed? To not have said that last "I love you" and made the best of our time before the day death claimed them. These decisions and more are all faced by the characters throughout the book. This is what makes it so mesmerising. You are immersed in their journeys because you are seeing yourself in them. Your emotions are fully engaged with their plights. And if at times if they are hesitant, unsure of what to do well you get that too. Some of those journeys are beautiful but others are heart breaking. Each story bringing a new outlook and view on the crisis the world has found itself in. But of course there are those that use the presence of the boxes for personal gain just as they would when they see any advantage in the modern world. And there are others who show their true morals when faced with something different from themselves. The writing itself is accomplished and nuanced, the plotting is excellent and unravels gently across the pages. The themes of death and grief are sensitively and beautifully captured. But what makes it magical for me is the connection you feel with each character. The short stringers pain burned within me as if it was my own. However, I was also distressed for the long stringers - what guilt one would feel. An intelligent and thought provoking exploration into what it means to be human and how we measure the substance of life. As the truth about fate and choice is revealed long held beliefs are dissolved which leads to dramatic changes in friendships, families and communities. But for me the narrative transcends its philosophical themes. The Measure is an ode to love. A gorgeous and enduring love story to life, no matter the length of you and your loved one's string. I wish I could discuss The Measure more but to do so would give too many spoilers and ruin the book. Highly Recommended.

Was this review helpful?

Wow… this is such a powerful, thought provoking and utterly heartbreaking novel. It’s about big decisions, and small, many hurts, fears and anger and hatred. But it’s also more than that it’s how some people through love and the ability to care can make a difference to people lives and of course their deaths. What would you do if you found a box that had a length of string, be it either short, middle or long? How would you feel if that piece of string decided how long you have left to live? Would you rail, weep or succumb to panic? For me the answer is always we just don’t know I could be all those things but I would hope to never open it and just live how I would normally live. This is a fantastic book and one that I know will be huge. I am determined to buy this.

Was this review helpful?

Thanks to NetGalley and Harper Collins for this Advanced Review Copy. The title and premise of this story caught my attention completely. I am so thrilled to have received an ARC of this book. Absolute dynamite that addresses so many social and cultural issues that plague our modern world. At first, I feared this was going to be a retelling of the 2019 movie "Countdown" but was soon disabused of that notion. "It was difficult to imagine a time before them, a world in which they hadn't come." From this opening line, we meet one character after another faced with whether or not to open the mysterious and indestructible box that arrives on each and every person's doorstep around the globe. Even those who don't have doorsteps, such as the homeless or nomads who live in tents, receive their own box. Everyone, that is, aged 22 and over. The boxes bear the legend, "The measure of your life lies within" and contain a string of a certain length, which tells you how long you have left to live. The changes that come rock the world. This is a shocking read because it is all too believable. The book contains so many great lines that I struggled to choose only a few to highlight in this review. Here goes ... "When your sample size is the entire world, you're bound to find anecdotes that support any theory." And ... "Ben tried to maintain eye contact with the floor." And ... "Did a patient receive less care because her string was short, or was a patient's string short because she received less care?" ... A wonderful take on the classic chicken-and-egg question. Although the author undid this achievement in the very next sentence by then telling us it's "a wonderful chicken-and-egg question". Argh. One character I found incredibly naive. Amie, a woman in her twenties, who teaches 10-year-olds at a private school. This character brings us nonsense such as: "Amie smiled at the thought of her parents, still active in their late fifties" ... erm, I should think so!!!! Also, in the same vein: "... Still working full-time and filling their weekends ..." they're in their 50s for heaven's sakes! Amie is only a couple of decades or so younger. I might expect this kind of mistaken ageism from a kid or a teen but not from someone in their mid-to-late twenties. Obviously, this character is blissfully unaware of retirement ages despite being employed herself. Okay, mini rant over with. That was the only place in the book that pulled me up short and had me asking, WTF??? The rest of the read was brilliant. One final quote I loved: "Even if we can't affect someone's longevity, at least we can still impact their quality of life." This read gets 4.5 stars from me, rounded up to five for rating purposes. I connected with all the characters and found the plot entirely believable and plausible. I finished this read in two sittings, and some of the questions it raises will stick with me for a while. *** NOTE ON RATINGS: I consider a 3-star rating a positive review. Picky about which books I give 5 stars to, I reserve this highest rating for the stories I find stunning and which moved me. 5 STARS: IT WAS AMAZING! I COULD NOT PUT IT DOWN! — Highly Recommended. 4 STARS: I WOULD PULL AN ALL-NIGHTER — Go read this book. 3 STARS: IT WAS GOOD! — An okay read. Didn’t love it. Didn’t hate it. 2 STARS: I MAY HAVE LIKED A FEW THINGS —Lacking in some areas: writing, characterisation, and/or problematic plot lines. 1 STAR: NOT MY CUP OF TEA —Lots of issues with this book.

Was this review helpful?

The Measure is based on such an interesting concept, that I took the question with me long after I finished reading the book - if the exact length of your life were contained in a box before you, would you look? And how would you deal with that decision, whatever it was? I really appreciated how Erlick explored all the different combinations of decisions, emotions and global reactions. The writing was compelling and easy to follow, even with the multiple narratives.

Was this review helpful?

This is the 182nd book I have read in 2021 and I can comfortably say it is the best. I don't even know where to begin in my review. In this novel, all adults aged 22 and over awake to find a box outside their homes. The boxes differ in only two ways, the name of the recipient and the length of string inside the box -the length of string being indicative of how long the recipient will live. We follow a number of characters throughout this story as they grapple with the decision as to whether to open the box or not. Would you want the relief of knowing you will live a long life or would you be unable to cope with the heartbreak of uncovering a short string? These are the dilemmas which our characters face and they all make their own choices. Erlick deals not only with the personal choices of the main characters as they struggle with this momentous decision but also the impact on society. We see "short-stringers" pitted against "long-stringers" with the former facing harassment and discrimination in many aspects of their normal daily lives. The novel is told from multiple perspectives and the characters interweave with each other. Often times, with multiple character perspectives, a novel can become confusing however the characters here are so real you will have no trouble keeping everyone straight. Of course, I will not ruin any aspects of their stories however be prepared to laugh, cheer, empathise and cry as you follow these ordinary yet remarkable people dealing with knowing (or not knowing) their eventual fate. As I have said above, I read a LOT of books. Like most of you, I read them, I enjoy them but if you were to ask me about them six months later, I would likely struggle to recall the details of it. Books like The Measure come along rarely....a book which will linger with me over the coming days, weeks, months and probably years. A book that changes your thoughts on life and makes you question how you are living, whether you are making the most of the time you may have left or wasting it away. This will be a certain hit when released and I would not be surprised to see a Hollywood film or Netflix series follow. A must read and a great novel for any book clubs out there. Thank you so much to the author, Netgalley and HarperCollins UK for an ARC in exchange for an honest review.

Was this review helpful?

How long is a piece of string? In the Measure's case, the longer the better! This book has such an imaginative concept, across the world people wake up one morning to find a box on their doorstep. Inside the box is a piece of string that measures the exact number of years you have left to live. Would you open it? I’m not sure I would be brave enough. What if my string was short? Would it change my outlook on life? Would I give up my job? Travel the world? Or take risks I wouldn’t have dreamt of? This book raises so many questions that beg the reader to ponder what they would do faced with a similar situation. The Measure is told from a multiple points of views; the characters are an eclectic bunch, each of their stories intertwine perfectly. Each character’s length of string leads to dramatic changes. Relationships are fractured, whilst others are built, love grows, love is lost, each character brings a unique outlook to the story. Nikki Erlick has captured the characters’ every emotion perfectly. You feel their pain, fear, confusion, and guilt, living their story alongside each and everyone of them. This isn’t just a book about relationships, the author explores themes of mortality, loss, prejudice, exclusion, and fate, it’s these themes that move the plot forward. This never felt like a depressing read, as woven into the pages were hope, human resilience, love, and the importance of not taking life for granted. I found The Measure such an extraordinary book to read, beautifully written, emotional, heartwarming and thought provoking in equal measures (no pun intended). I think this book will be a HUGE hit on its release in 2022, and would make the perfect book club read as there’s much to discuss. Highly recommend.

Was this review helpful?

This is one of those books I just had to read when I first saw the blurb. I had high expectations, and for the most part they were totally met. Beautiful characters, fantastic writing, a real mixture of heartbreak and hope lies between these pages. There are some mesmerising characters and there is a real strength in its believability. For me, there were times the novel veered too much toward the political - whilst this added to the realism it wasn’t what I craved - it was the characters themselves, and whilst this was a loss for me it will not necessarily be for everyone else. A fantastic book which is likely to stir some real conversation in the coming year.

Was this review helpful?

This is the book that has got all of my friends talking about life and the mysteries of death and none of them have even read the first page yet. If you could know how long you had to live, would it change the way you live your life? Would you open it? If you knew for certain that it was real and the length of string inside the box directly correlated to your lifespan, would you want to know? I have wrestled with this question for weeks, changing my mind back and forth every other chapter or so, with each character having a good point and clear reasons for their choices. In the end, after many long conversations well into the night, I finally decided that I would open it. I’d pretend otherwise and agonise over the pros and cons but knowing that the box was right in front of me, almost mocking me, I’d have to look. The majority of the characters do look, which knowing humanity in general and our habits, doesn’t surprise me in the slightest, I think it’s perfectly normal to want to look. Erlick captures the nuances of those who look and those who didn’t just perfectly, to write so authentically about something that hasn’t and won’t ever happen is a genuine talent. I don’t want to go into too much detail about the story itself but I want to bring to light some of the themes that run through the entire piece. A story about mysterious lifespan revealing boxes turns out to be so much more, it really looks deep into the fabric of society and how collective experience of intense events really changes the way people act and interact.

Was this review helpful?

One day a box arrives outside the doorstep of every adult aged 22 and over, not just in one country, but all over the world. No one knows where they came from, who delivered them but the decision rests about whether to open the box and reveal how long you have left to live or not. The premise of the book is superb and such a moral dilemma for us all. Would you really want to know how long you had left to live or to go about your daily life in ignorant bliss? The book follows what happens in the lives of some who decide to open their boxes and the impact on their lives and on the lives of those around them. This really makes you consider this dilemma for yourself and is a stunning debut novel.

Was this review helpful?

Readers who liked this book also liked: