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My So-Called Death Paperback – March 8, 2010

4.6 out of 5 stars 23 customer reviews
Book 2 of 2 in the Dead High Series

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Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

Tired of vampires and looking for humorous gore? Meet high-school freshman and zombie cheerleader Karen Vera. When Karen falls from the top of a cheerleading pyramid, her father scoops her brains back into her cracked skull and rushes her home rather than to a hospital or morgue. (In Karen’s family, people frequently survive their death and go on to live full and happy lives as zombies.) Karen is sent to DEAD High, a special boarding school where zombie teens take courses such as Zombie Internet Technology and Secrets of Morticians: Foundation and Beyond. Meals consist of different preparations of (animal) brains, with separate lines for raw and cooked. Karen falls for Gavin, the cutest guy in school, but then suspects he is in on an evil plot to murder students and eat their (human) brains, which is emphatically taboo. The plot is swift paced and appropriately wacky, but the real draws are the satirical portrayal of the popular set and the black humor of zombie life. Pop-culture references will date this title, but for right now, it’s a welcome horror spoof. Grades 6-10. --Debbie Carton

About the Author

Stacey Jay (Little Rock, Arkansas) is a workaholic and author of books for young adults. She has four kids, a decidedly sick sense of humor, and loves creepies, crawlies, blood, guts, and of course romance. Visit her online at www.staceyjay.com.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Flux; 1 edition (March 8, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0738715433
  • ISBN-13: 978-0738715438
  • Product Dimensions: 8.1 x 5.3 x 0.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.6 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (23 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,404,000 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By S. Power TOP 500 REVIEWER on January 5, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
My So-Called Death by Stacy Jay Follows perky cheerleader Karen. When Karen falls to her death after being dropped off the top of a cheerleading formation she doesn't stay dead, she wakes back up. Karen soon finds herself enrolled at the DEAD school for zombie kids. Unfortunately as soon as she arrives she finds that this school isn't as easy to navigate as the one she left. Her roommate is creepy, everyone seems to dislike her and her classmates are having their brains stolen.

This is a cute zombie novel that kids will love. Karen is a spunky zombie girl who is unafraid to be herself even when it's unpopular. The mythology is crafted in an entertaining way and the mystery has a nice resolution and kept me guessing till the end. I sped through the book reading it in one sitting.

Appropriateness: This book has no adult content. While Karen is in high school her attitude is that of someone younger making this a book that will appeal to a middle grade audience. The romance isn't a main factor in the book and the mystery is more creepy than scary or excessively violent. I recommend this book to readers 10-14.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Karen Vera has been transported from her fabulous position atop a cheerleader pyramid to DEAD High. She'd known there were risks to being a "flyer," but she didn't imagine that she'd die -- let alone become "genetically undead." Now Karen has to deal with things like her weirdo roommate who mostly cries and performs goth-y rituals under a blanket. And then there's the snacking on animal brains to prevent rot. And, oh yeah, someone in school has been harvesting her fellow student's brains and way too many signs are pointing to crushworthy Gavin. This hilarious mystery will have you hooked from page one, with its fabulously imagined world in which the teenage undead can play, complete with plenty of zombie puns. I'm really hoping that Stacey Jay will continue Karen Vera's story as a series, even if I'm not inclined hang out at the DEAD High campus any time in the near future.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I like fun and fast paced, and Stacey Jay always delivers. This isn't your normal YA fare -- this is a great mix of romance and humor with a shadow of darkness lurking over it all. If you like cheeky but smart, this is for you.
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Format: Paperback
When I heard that My So-Called Death by Stacey Jay was being re-released, it was a no-brainer (ha!) that I was going to have to read it. Stacey has written some of my favorite YA books, and, although this one is aimed at the younger end of the YA age group, it is still completely engaging.

Karen Vera, the heroine of this story, is a pert and sassy cheerleader, who, to put it politely, is Death-challenged, which means that she has a genetic mutation that prevents her from dying. But, when your entire school sees you tumble from the top of a cheer formation to your death, what is there to do but roll with the changes? Karen is whisked off to DEAD High School, so that she may better learn what it means to live as a member of the dead.

I have to admit that zombies are not usually on my list of paranormal creatures that I want to read about. All that blood and death and brain-eating, you know. But the characters in this book are not your typical zombies. Stacey has taken the stereotype and completely changed it, writing a story that is campy and fun, and, given the subject matter, pretty darned enjoyable. I found myself laughing out loud at the intros to each chapter. Entries from books like, 'Total Health for the Death-Challenged, 5th Edition' and 'Zombie Poets Through the Ages, 2nd Edition' were witty and entertaining. The mystery that pairs Karen and her boy zombie crush Gavin ties everything together nicely, making this a story that YA readers will very much enjoy, and, coupled with the snarky banter and typical teen angst, makes for a fast and enjoyable read.
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Format: Kindle Edition
This is the very first zombie book that I could ever read beginning to end. Im not a huge zombie fan, don't have the stomach for it, but My So-Called Death was actually pretty good. I was sucked right in, and although Karen really did annoy me a bit, the characters were likable, and dare I say -- relatable.

This book had everything -- humor, romance, magic, slight gore, and a mystery that just keeps you reeling. I had to get past the slight gore -- again, weak stomach-- but once I did that, nothing could get me to put the book down.

Stacy Jay wowed me yet again with her writing and storytelling. I enjoyed her book, Of Beast and Beauty, and this just solidified my need to read more of her works. Its a must buy for anyone, even if you arent into the "Death Challenged".

I honestly cant think of anything more to say about My So-Called Death. It was relatable to real life, most of the humor wasn't simply jokes, but about things that embarrass us in real life happening to the characters in the book. The ending wasn't my favorite, and I felt that it could be better, but the pace and size of the book was perfect.

As I said before, I look forward to reading more of her books. If you are new to the name Stacy Jay, I absolutely recommend her. I rate this book 4 stars. I received a ecopy of the book to read and review honestly, and it in no way effected my opinion.
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