Expiration Date Review
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Mickey Wade once lived the life of his dreams: writing for the Philadelphia City Press, living in a swanky neighborhood, hanging out with his pretty neighbor, Meghan. But then the paper cut his job—and, with no way to pay for his swanky apartment, he was forced to move back to his old neighborhood on the wrong side of the tracks.

While his grandfather’s in the hospital, Mickey moves into the old man’s one-room apartment. But after taking a couple of Tylenol from the medicine cabinet, he falls asleep on the pull-out couch and wakes up in another time.

The pills take Mickey back to 1972—the year he was born—to the same apartment, which was then the office of psychologist Dr. Mitchell DeMeo. As Mickey continues to travel back in time, he starts digging for more information about the past, and he soon learns that the timid 12-year-old kid who lived downstairs from DeMeo’s office was Billy Derace—the kid who would later grow up to murder Mickey’s father.

Written by Marvel Comics writer Duane Swierczynski (and peppered with a handful of black and white illustrations by Wolverine illustrator Laurence Campbell), Expiration Date has all of the fast-paced Wham! and Pow! of a comic book, mixed with the detailed development of a novel. Carefully plotted and cleverly written, it’s part gripping sci-fi time-travel adventure, part dark and pulpy thriller. And the result couldn’t be much more entertaining.

Mickey Wade is a fascinating character: a down-and-out modern-day reporter who often feels more like a 1940s hack—or a pulp fiction gumshoe. He’s spent his career digging up dirt on other people, searching for the truth, while he’s spent his entire life avoiding his own truth. And once he’s faced with it, in the form of young Billy Derace—and Grandpop Henry’s research—he forces himself out of his unemployment funk to try to do something about it. The results, though, aren’t what you might expect—and the story is full of clever surprises.

Like Mickey’s grandpop’s mystery pills, Expiration Date will transport you a completely different world—and you’ll be unable to resist its spell over you. Swiercynski sets a breathtaking pace from the opening pages—and once Mickey starts traveling through time, there’s really no use in trying to set the book aside. Just call in sick. Clear your schedule. Pour yourself a cup of coffee. And sit back and enjoy the trip.

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