Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Life As We Knew It, by Susan Beth Pfeffer

Life As We Knew It, by Susan Beth Pfeffer: Fifteen-year-old Miranda’s diary holds the mundane day-to-day doings of any teenage girl, until an asteroid knocks the moon out of orbit, disrupting Earth’s gravitational forces. Now it chronicles her family’s survival as life on Earth seems to slowly shudder to a halt.

Masterful doesn’t even begin to cover it. Pfeffer’s story seems to prove that, like T.S. Eliot’s poem, ‘The Hollow Men,’ the world will end, “not with a bang, but a whimper.” Most post-apocalypse books bring the world to an abrupt end with one single thunder-flash event, but here, the slow encroach of global atmospheric changes send human life into an almost lazy death-spiral downward. Miranda, who lives in a happy, loving home, and isn't used to having to go without, struggles with her slightly self-centered nature as decisions and sacrifices are made to keep the whole family alive. Her wants and complaints bring a very realistic dimension to the story.

I’m really surprised I didn’t have nightmares from this book, especially since, five minutes after finishing it, I read about the swine flu outbreak for the first time. But I still highly recommend you read it, since it’s not only a really powerful story, but a reminder of how global changes really could affect us.

Buy Surviving Serendipity at Amazon or Quake Direct!

1 comment:

Nick Valentino said...

This sounds really scary! Like "The Road" but through a 15 year old's eyes. Scary but interesting! Thanks for sharing!