Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Review of Life as We Knew It by Susan Beth Pfeffer

Title: Life as We Knew It
Author: Susan Beth Pfeffer
Narrator: Emily Bauer
Published by: Listening Library
Length: 7 sound discs (9 hr.)
Source: Library
Format: Audiobook

Summary from Goodreads: When Miranda first hears the warnings that a meteor is headed on a collision path with the moon, they just sound like an excuse for extra homework assignments. But her disbelief turns to fear in a split second as the entire world witnesses a lunar impact that knocks the moon closer in orbit, catastrophically altering the earth’s climate.

Everything else in Miranda’s life fades away as supermarkets run out of food, gas goes up to more than ten dollars a gallon, and school is closed indefinitely. But what Miranda and her family don’t realize is that the worst is yet to come.

Simply stunning.  This book was so much more than anything I expected and it blew me away.

One crazy night a meteor hits the moon and now the earth is completely changed.  Immediately tsunamis and earthquakes devastate the population.  The electricity goes out and nothing is the same.  This had to be such a scary experience.  I am completely impressed with how Miranda's mom handled the situation.  She took the children out of school, took money out of the bank, and bought all the food and supplies she possibly could.  I don't know how I personally would have handled things, but Miranda's mom made sure her family was supplied for.

Throughout the novel Miranda and her family had to make tough decisions.  There were times when they had to be selfish and protect just themselves because literally their lives depended on it.  The entire time I listened to this book I kept trying to put myself in the same situation and ask how I would react.  I'd love to say I would think critically and evaluate every situation, but who knows what would happen.  A national disaster like this would make even sane people go crazy. 

I don't know that a book has ever made me evaluate myself as much as this Life As We Knew It did.  You will constantly be asking yourself what you would do about this or that and it's interesting to see what Susan Beth Pfeffer chose each of the characters to do.  I loved the range of characters in this novel and that fact that each person handles the crisis a little differently.  This book also made me realize how much I take for granted or not only take for granted by rarely even think of. 

The one thing I wasn't too fond of was Miranda's attitude at times.  She kept believing that this was all going to blow over and nothing bad would happen.  She didn't really understand the impact the disaster had on everything.  She often complained about not getting enough to eat and made some very childish decisions.  I understand that she was young, but I think most people would grasp the seriousness of a situation faster than Miranda was willing to.  It was almost as if she was in denial and I really wanted to slap her at times.  I felt that everyone else in the family understood the sacrifices and yet she fought with all she had against everything.  I thought she was selfish in a time when selfishness could end up killing people you love.

As with the story, I really enjoyed the narrator of this book.  The story is told as entries in Miranda's diary and the narrator gave such emotion to each day.  I felt really connected to the story and I think this was because of how engaging the narrator was. 
I was pleasantly surprised with this story and I can't wait to read more of Susan Beth Pfeffer.          

1 comment:

  1. YES! I read this book a long time ago, but I remember loving every minute of it. And I don't fault Miranda for thinking it would blow over. I think at that time, she couldn't help but hope for the best.

    Loved the characters too! I bet it was even better on audiobook.


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