ARC Review: The Last One by Fatima Daas | Teen Ink

ARC Review: The Last One by Fatima Daas

July 6, 2021
By Mist SILVER, Anchorage, Alaska
Mist SILVER, Anchorage, Alaska
7 articles 2 photos 0 comments

Favorite Quote:
"For you, I would."

“My name is Fatima Daas.”

The Last One is a poetic novel that speaks directly to the heart.

Each new repetition of this phrase, “My name is Fatima Daas”, like a chant with an echoing rhythm, brings a fresh chapter. They hold new memories each time: Father’s cologne of tobacco, sorrow for Mrs. Benameur, Mother’s cooking in the kitchen. 

They are like vignettes, snapshots of time broken down to the barest elements and presented with lyrical ease. They are flashbacks.

The structure of The Last One is loose. There is no strict, narrative theme from beginning to end, and there is no clear-cut plot line - but this is what makes The Last One so real. We are invited into Fatima’s lives to see for ourselves the adventures and hardships she’s been through. We are free to make our own interpretations of the events that play out right before our eyes. Coupled with the raw emotion and skillful writing, the structure magnifies the power of Fatima’s story. We are making memories as we read.

The novel is written in the present tense. This careful choice pushes forth the sensation that everything is happening in real-time, further emphasizing the uncertainty that Fatima has experienced throughout her life. 

The Last One is no doubt a magnificent read. Every person and event begins as an isolated fireplace, yet lit one by one as each chapter rises anew until they’re all burning brightly in a large puzzle of flames. Slowly we come to an understanding of Fatima’s life and what she stands for. The result is incredible - a story that won’t be forgotten for a very long time.

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