Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Review: Life As We Knew It


Amazon.com review:

It's almost the end of Miranda's sophomore year in high school, and her journal reflects the busy life of a typical teenager: conversations with friends, fights with mom, and fervent hopes for a driver's license. When Miranda first begins hearing the reports of a meteor on a collision course with the moon, it hardly seems worth a mention in her diary. But after the meteor hits, pushing the moon off its axis and causing worldwide earthquakes, tsunamis, and volcanoes, all the things Miranda used to take for granted begin to disappear. Food and gas shortages, along with extreme weather changes, come to her small Pennsylvania town; and Miranda's voice is by turns petulant, angry, and finally resigned, as her family is forced to make tough choices while they consider their increasingly limited options. Yet even as suspicious neighbors stockpile food in anticipation of a looming winter without heat or electricity, Miranda knows that that her future is still hers to decide even if life as she knew it is over.

Genre: YA, Fiction, Apocalyptic Fiction
Page Count: 337
Edition: Hardcover; Library
Pub. Date: October 1, 2006
Series: Moon, #1

My rating: 3.5 out of 5
Amazon.com: 4 out of 5
Goodreads: 4 out of 5 (average)

"Life As We knew It" is told from the diary entries of a 16 year old girl named Miranda. This is a story about the very essence of family and what it really means to stick together in a world that has turned upside down. One day you're living as usual, and the next chaos and death every way you look.

The diary format threw me for a bit. I wasn't expecting it at all and it took me the first few chapters to get into it. But once disaster hit, everything just came into place. And trust me, it didn't take very long. Through Miranda's entries we see the daily struggle for a family to come together against all odds. How one must put aside their own feelings to help the bigger picture and come to grips with reality. Towards the end of the book you definitely see how much Miranda has changed, how maturity has nestled its way into her very being and her realization that family is really the most important thing.

It's definitely a thought provoking story that has you asking yourself, "What would I do if I was faced with this type of situation?" Anything I could come up with just left me with an overwhelming sense of dread. I will say one thing, Pfeffer did a wonderful job at capturing the emotions. So much so, that you felt what the characters felt right down to your toes.

I really liked this book, but I didn't love it. If only because it was written as entries in a diary. It's very much a YA book and my tolerance for 16-year old angst can only go so far. But once it strayed away from her personal self pity, it was really enjoyable. Plenty of moments where my heart just ached for everyone and I even went as far as putting myself in Miranda's place. Definitely gives me a new appreciation for all of life's simplicities and the things we take for granted.

"Life As We Knew It" is the first book in the Moon series. The second book titled "The Dead and the Gone" (released in 2008) is dealing with the same cataclysmic disaster from the viewpoint of a 17 year old boy named Alex. Then due to be released in 2010 is book 3, "This World We Live In" which, I believe, brings the characters together.

(On a sidenote: this is my 100th book read in 2009!!)


Tales of Whimsy said...

I so need to read this.

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