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Sunday, September 20, 2009
Life as we knew it by Susan Beth Pfeffer
Susan Beth Pfeffer is the author of several well known YA-books, but I had never heard about her until I saw a review for Life as we knew it on Viviennes blog Serendipity and just had to get it. Thanks again Vivienne. It was a great read.
Miranda is just an ordinary 16 year old teenager living in Pennsylvania with ordinary teen-problems: will she ever go on a date, how is it to kiss a boy, why does she feel she doesn't know her friends anymore and so on. Miranda also has a pretty nice family, living with her mother and little brother while big brother is away on college and her dad is living with his new wife in another state. But all is quite well, its spring, school is about to end for summer in a month and Miranda and her little brother are looking forward to spend summer with their dad and in basketball camp. Miranda keeps a diary where she writes big and small from her everyday life, in a believable teenage-voice.
We get into Miranda's life a couple of days before something big is going to happen. An asteroid is about to hit the moon, and the whole world is excited, all tv-stations run endless interviews with astronomers and everybody wants to watch when it happens. Nobody suspects anything but a spectacular natural phenomenon.
So when the asteroid knocks the moon of its axis it is a big surprise. And initally, panic breaks loose with the moon hanging to close to the earth. Very soon the first reports of natural disasters reach Miranda's quiet Pennsylvanian town, and it becomes clear the life as we knew it is a thing of the past.
Miranda and her family does the best they can to survive in a whole new world, and while I did wish for a bit more action from time to time, I have to say that I loved Miranda's sensible diary-voice, following the ups and downs of her and her family's life. It was a rather exciting read, and I was hoping for a number two, because I want to know what happens next.....
I haven't found a sequel to Miranda's story, but Susan Beth Pfeffer has also written the dead and the gone, which apparently takes place at the same time as Miranda's story, but with different protagonists in a different part of USA. I am going to see if I can get that one as well. Life as we knew it is highly recommendable.
I have always liked apocalyptic, postapocalyptic and End-of-the-world books. Can you recommend any?
Amanda of The Zen Leaf reviewed Life as we knew it here.