Friday, March 2, 2012

Book Review: The Future of Us

Title: The Future of Us
Sequel? No
Author: Carolyn Mackler and Jay Asher
Genres: Realistic Fiction, Romance, science fiction (of the time travel persuasion)
Age Level: YA (13-18) 
Summary: "... I got this desktop computer with Windows 95 and a color monitor... Our friend Kellan recently got AOL. She squeals every time someone sends her an instant message." - The Future of Us, pages 2 and 4
It's the year 1996. It's a sight to behold if you have a computer or cellphone. Or, even more unusual, both. Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, all the technology we take for granted today hasn't been invented yet. So what happens when eleventh grader Emma Nelson logs onto AOL and discovers Facebook, with pages from her, her friends, her family - but fifteen years in the future. She shares this phenomenon with her ex-best friend and current neighbor Josh, in an attempt to figure out how it is possible. Seeing their futures, and seeing how miserable Emma is, she tries her best to change it, to make little ripples in the present and then refreshing the page to see how her future changes. But is that really what she should be doing? Should two high schoolers intentionally mess with the present to change to future?

Review: Talk about a dynamic duo if I ever saw one. Carolyn Mackler and Jay Asher are both fantastic writers on their own, but this co-authored novel shows just how wonderful they are. It has a deep, philosophical, underlying theme, wrapped in  typical high school drama. It makes you question - if you had the chance to change your future, would you? How much of our own choices affect our futures? How much is left up to destiny and fate? Should we just say que sera sera and leave it be? A powerful book, which I would recommend to everyone, adults and teenagers alike.

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