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Tuesday, January 5, 2010

This World We Live In by Susan Beth Pfeffer

This World We Live In by Susan Beth Pfeffer
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Genre: Contemporary
Age Recommendation: 14+
Length: Full Length (257 pgs)
Rating: 4.5 Suns
Reviewed by Tiger Lily

It's been a year since a meteor collided with the moon, catastrophically altering the earth's climate. For Miranda Evans life as she knew it no longer exists. Her friends and neighbors are dead, the landscape is frozen, and food is increasingly scarce.

The struggle to survive intensifies when Miranda's father and stepmother arrive with a baby and three strangers in tow. One of the newcomers is Alex Morales, and as Miranda's complicated feelings for him turn to love, his plans for his future thwart their relationship. Then a devastating tornado hits the town of Howell, and Miranda makes a decision that will change their lives forever.

Sometimes the best thing to do is make lemonade out of life’s lemons. If that includes losing the sun because of a meteor, losing your dad to another woman, and losing your privacy, then so be it. That’s the life in This World We Live In.

Some stories must be told and others, no matter how devastating, are essential. This is one of those stories. Now don’t think this story will be one of those you can plow through in a couple of hours. Ms. Pfeffer’s tale is one you must take time to savor even through the blackest parts.

Miranda’s life changed the day the meteor hit. The moon broke apart, blotting out the sun. Only some people can be saved, but she’s not one of the important ones. I like the idea that family must stick together. That thread ran through the whole of the story, even when the traditional idea of family is challenged. The second thread in this story is that love, no matter to whom, is the one thing that can save us all. You may not like what happens to you, but if you have faith in the people around you and don’t give up on love, you’ll survive.

Although I wouldn’t suggest this story for younger audiences, this is a great and compelling read for a high school student. I give This World We Live In 4.5 suns.

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