"It is the first week of school in 1979, and Oliver 'Boo' Dalrymple—ghostly pale eighth grader; aspiring scientist; social pariah—is standing next to his locker, reciting the periodic table. The next thing he knows, he finds himself lying in a strange bed in a strange land. He is a new resident of a place called Town—an afterlife exclusively for thirteen-year-olds. Soon Boo is joined by Johnny Henzel, a fellow classmate, who brings with him a piece of surprising news about the circumstances of the boys’ deaths.

In Town, there are no trees or animals, just endless rows of redbrick dormitories surrounded by unscalable walls. No one grows or ages, but everyone arrives just slightly altered from who he or she was before. To Boo’s great surprise, the qualities that made him an outcast at home win him friends; and he finds himself capable of a joy he has never experienced. But there is a darker side to life after death—and as Boo and Johnny attempt to learn what happened that fateful day, they discover a disturbing truth that will have profound repercussions for both of them.

Hilarious and heartwarming, poignant and profound, Boo is a unique look at the bonds of friendship in what is, ultimately, a book about finding your place in the world—be it this one, or the next."

Summary from Penguin Random House:


Vintage Book Penguin Random House


Reader reviews of Boo on Goodreads:


Literary fiction




Book cover is the green of an old chalkboard, with four slats cut in the top of it that make the cover look like a locker. The area behind the slats are dark blue, as is a number plate above the slats, marked "106." In the second slat hide two eyes which look out from inside the locker. The title is written in cursive white letters, chalk-like, slanted across the lower-third of the page. The author's name is written in the same color and texture, but in a print handwriting style. Underneath his name is written "Author of Bang Crunch" in the same font as his name. At the top of the book, in white printed text are the words, "Instantly charming, never predictable, quietly profound." - Bryan Lee O'Malley, author of the Scott Pilgrim Series

The cover design is by Isabel Urbina Peña, with adaptation from the printed book by Stephanie Moss. 






NSmith - Boo_Cover.jpg


Smith, “Boo,” The School Shooting Fiction Archive, accessed April 18, 2024,

Output Formats


Copy the code below into your web page