Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Review: Life As We Knew It (Audiobook)

Life As We Knew It by Susan Beth Pfeffer
Series: The Last Survivors
Genre: Dystopia, Young Adult
Length: 9 hours and 2 minutes
Narrator: Emily Bauer
Source: eLibrary
Author's Blog | Twitter
Buy it: Amazon | Kindle | B&N | Book Depo

Miranda’s disbelief turns to fear in a split second when a meteor knocks the moon closer to the earth. How should her family prepare for the future when worldwide tsunamis wipe out the coasts, earthquakes rock the continents, and volcanic ash blocks out the sun? As summer turns to Arctic winter, Miranda, her two brothers, and their mother retreat to the unexpected safe haven of their sunroom, where they subsist on stockpiled food and limited water in the warmth of a wood-burning stove.

Told in journal entries, this is the heart-pounding story of Miranda’s struggle to hold on to the most important resource of all--hope--in an increasingly desperate and unfamiliar world.

My Rating:

My Review:
Miranda keeps a journal documenting life shortly before and after a meteor hits the moon.  She captures the hardships of planning for a scary future where no one knows what to expect or how to survive.  She's still a teenager with emotions and dreams that are especially difficult in a time like this.  In a world with such uncertainty, Miranda finds she is most concerned about her friends and family.  Sometimes surviving doesn't seem so appealing if you have to do it alone.

On the story...
I honestly considered not writing a review for this book because of my concern that I could never adequately do this book justice and that any description might come across as negative instead of positive.  Please trust me that whether it sounds like it or not, this book works.

First, the book is written in a series of diary entries.  Under this format, there's no mystery or hidden conspiracy.  We simply follow the day-to-day life of a family in crisis.  Life is endangered, but people aren't running for their lives.  While it isn't a page turner int eh traditional sense, things are so bad that you really want to know how it ends.  Miranda can be whiny at times but she honestly whined over legitimate things.  For example, there seemed to be sibling jealousy.  When her younger brother was allowed to eat two meals a day and Miranda had to alternate between eating one and two meals, Miranda had quite a few things to say about it.  Miranda and her mom seemed to argue a bit, but it seemed to fit.  It's a YA read, but it reads a bit like middle grade to me.

I really enjoyed this book.  I never knew what would happen next.  Things get much worse before they get better, but there is a sense of hope at the end.  This is one dystopian that I feel could seriously happen tomorrow because it doesn't rely on the breakdown of the government.  This is definitely a very different dystopian read than most of the others.

On the narrator...
I enjoyed Ms. Bauer.  I think she did a good job.  The differences in voices for the characters were slight but I figured this was mroe because of the diary format than anything else.

I was pleasantly surprised at this one.  This is the opposit of the Hunger Games, Divergent, and Delirium series though.  Pick this one up if you are looking for a different type of Dystopian read.

 P.S.  This goes toward that Dystopia challenge that I forgot that I committed to.  I wasn't kidding when I said there were more to come.

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  1. I loved this review! And I think the story is quite different from other stories. It looks more real. Thank you for sharing! : )

    1. It felt real. It was traumatic but different than "the society is lying to me" mantra of other dystopians.

  2. Thanks for the review. It's a nice change of pace to hear of a more realistic Dystopian book. I may have to add this to my audio list. I'm super behind on my Dystopia Challenge, this may be a good way to squeeze in another book. :-)

    Tamara @ Shelf Addiction

    1. That's how I've tackled my dystopia challenge. Audios all the way!

  3. I keep thinking this audio is for me. Great review.

  4. I'm glad the audio was good. I tired to read the book but I kept getting distracted so I eventually gave it up. I might try the audio instead :D

    1. I can understand that. I think the audio is better for a lot of reasons,but mostly because it isn't the kind of plot where you wanted to know one answer. You didn't know where this one was going.

  5. I listened to this audio as well. I really enjoyed it but I thought that Miranda was a bit childish at times.

    1. I think she did sound a bit childish but I think that's why it seemed like a middle grade read to me.

  6. I love that it is different type of dystopian. I am going to pick it up :)

  7. Great review! We're on pretty much the same page with this book. I really enjoyed it and I thought Miranda was portrayed very realistically as a teenager caught in this dire situation, but I didn't care for her at times. Though the book was good, I've enjoyed other dystopias better.

    I just finished the second book in the series, The Dead and the Gone, last week and I liked it more than Life As We Knew It. I loved that it was set in NYC (I'll pick up pretty much any book that takes place there) and the main character, Alex, was a very smart, mature teenager. I just loved him. I seriously would have had a major crush on him if I had known him in real life in high school. :)

    1. I can understand that. It was just a different type of dystopian. I'm reading The Dead and the Gone right now and I don't yet have an opinion on which is better.


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