111 pages 3 hours read

Neal Shusterman


Fiction | Novel | YA | Published in 2007

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Use this activity to engage all types of learners, while requiring that they refer to and incorporate details from the text over the course of the activity.

“Revise the Bill of Life”

In this activity, students will re-imagine the world of the novel, a version of the world in which either the Heartland War was never fought or the war ended in an actual win-win compromise.

In Chapter 28, Risa sees the Admiral and tries to recall what side of the war he represents based on his uniform. She concludes that “it doesn’t really matter. Both sides lost.” Later, the Admiral reveals that the Bill of Life was designed to be so horrific that both sides would come to their senses. Instead, it had the opposite effect.

Re-read the fictional Bill of Life presented at the beginning of the novel and consider the many implications and ripple effects it had on people of all kinds throughout the novel. Reimagine a world in which everybody wins.

How would you revise the Bill of Life to suit that world? What would you include in a Bill of Life that allows people to work together for the highest good of every citizen while honoring, respecting, and allowing for intellectual, moral, religious, and philosophical diversity?