Wednesday, 4 April 2012
I've been posting a lot of reviews of Aussie YA books recently and while I know so many readers here and in the USA/UK love Aussie YA, they can be hard/expensive to source, so I thought I'd swtich it up today with a YA book by two fantastic American authors!

Title: The Future of Us
Authors: Jay Asher and Carolyn Mackler
Published: 2012
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
Source: purchased
Rating: 4 paws

From the blurb: It's 1996 and less than half of all American high school students have ever used the Internet. Facebook will not be invented for several more years. Emma just got a computer and an American Online CD-ROM with 100 free hours. When she and her best friend Josh log on to AOL they discover themselves on Facebook... fifteen years in the future. Everybody wonders what life has in store for them. Josh and Emma are about to find out.

Emma lives in Lake Forest, Pensylvania. Her parents are divorced, she lives with her mother and her dad, who lives with his new wife and baby, sends her a new computer as a gift. Josh Templeton lives next door and they used to be best friends that was up until six months ago when he made the mistake of thinking that like him, she wanted to be more than friends. Josh drops round with the CD-ROM that sets this story into motion. Emma logs on and a website pops up, it's Facebook. She's never heard of it yet when she looks at the site, she realises that it's a page about her but fifteen years in the future. At first she and Josh think it's a prank but they soon realise that their friends and family all have pages too and that small actions in their current lives can change what will show up on their page in the future.

So the idea for this book is fun, while I have a love/hate relationship with Facebook, I enjoyed this book a lot. I loved that it was set in the 90s. Emma struggling to pick a screen saver and settling for the pipes that build a maze all over the screen made me laugh, she jogs with a discman, uses Sun-in, listens to Alanis and Pearl Jam and Josh and his bf Tyson love skateboarding.

Emma starts trying to change her future by changing the way she acts now. She's unhappy with who she's married to in the future and decides she can make a difference now. I totally understand wanting to change your future and I'm sure like Emma, I would have wanted to do the same but I think she went about it in the wrong way. It seemed obvious to me that if you know the name of your future husband, just don't date him when you finally meet him - problem solved! But instead she goes around trying to make changes everywhere and this changes her future more than she'd like.

Josh on the other hand seemed quite pleased with his future and was far more relaxed about it all. He's happy with who he's married to in the future, or so he thinks, and he doesn't want Emma messing up his life. I also felt sorry for him, like I always do for the boys who are friends with girls who don't like them back.

I've read 13 Reasons Why by Asher and Vegan, Virgin, Valentine plus The Earth, My Butt and Other Big Round Things by Carolyn Mackler and they both do a great job with this book too. I read this book one morning, it was set at a good pace and the writing was straight-up and easy to read. I thought the ending was super cute and while we're talking about things that are cute, I loved the Aussie/U.K cover more than the US version, it's bright and fun and a lot more memorable.

If you love realistic fiction and stories about teens in high school, I suggest you grab yourself a copy of The Future of Us.


TwoGirlsandaNovel said...

Fantastic review Mandee. I didn't realise this book had a Facebook theme of sorts. Shows how much I've been paying attention, especially since I have this book sitting on my shelf (it's been there for a few months now). I should definitely look into reading it soon.


Erin W. said...

I love this book, mostly because it was partly written by Jay Asher whom I love . . . 13 Reasons Why was the best thing ever! Anyway great review! Glad to hear you enjoyed it!

Em said...

Agreed. Y'all got the better cover. I enjoyed reading The Future of Us, but it wasn't a favorite. I wanted a little more (of what I'm not sure).

Flannery (The Readventurer) said...

So many things. Agree about the cover, loving the 90s references, laughing about the AOL 100 hours CDs and wondering if this is as fun as 13 Going on 30 was. I really loathe Facebook, though. Barforama.

Magan @ Rather Be Reading said...

I'm glad to see your review! I have been going back and forth with whether or not to buy this book. What you point out about NOT DATING the guy seems totally obvious. This is still on my list... not to acquire a copy. :)

Magan @ Rather Be Reading said...

oops. Not = now. Dumb typos.

Jac said...

I'm not sure if I loved this book so much because it was written by Jay Asher or because of all the pop-culture references to my childhood! But either way? I loved it! And I loved your review :)

-Jac @ For Love and Books

Celine said...

I really enjoyed The Future of Us too although sometimes I found Emma quite annoying as a character. I love the Facebook idea and how we can see our future using Facebook. That sounds awesome. Makes me curious of my future...

Anyway, awesome review, Mandee! So glad you enjoyed it! ♥

Maja (The Nocturnal Library) said...

For some reason, I was really excited about this book. But the thing is, I'm not a big fan of realistic fiction OR stories about teens in high school, so maybe it's not the best choice for me. I think I expected something just a little bit different.

Great review, Mandee! :)

Jasprit said...

I remember running around with a discman! I still have to pick up Asher's books, you've made this book sound so much fun, I think it's the type of book that I will like! :)

Sam said...

Brilliant review, Mandee. I can't believe I haven't read this yet but I really need to! Everyone seems to love it and I'm glad you enjoyed it too. :)

Shirley said...

Awesome review, Mandee!I actually don't know what I would do had I been in Emma's situation, but what she did seriously annoyed the hell out of me! It felt like the world just had to revolve around her, and that REALLY pissed me off :/ LOL I'm with you on the boys being friends with girls who don't like them back :/ Anyway, I'm really glad you enjoyed this<3

Nicola (pocketfullofbooks) said...

Excellent review! I go back and forth about whether or not to buy this, as I've seen so many mixed reviews, but I think I should just give in and get it already. It sounds fun!

Heidi@Rainy Day Ramblings said...

I just loaded this book on my Kindle the other day, Totally looking forward to reading it. I hate to date myself but I was in my early twenties when this is set and I totally can relate to the dial up AOL and how it changed my world. I too have a love/hate relationship with FB and more often than not it is hate. Happy Wednesday, Mands :)

Beverley said...

Great review! I recently read this and LOVED it :)

New follower!

I love your blog, it's so CUTE!

BookStacksOnDeck said...

Sounds awesome - loved the 90s! I lol'd at "CD-ROM" hahaa. :D

The Teen Book Guru said...

What a cute cat!! OMG I love cats so much!! Oh yeah and what a gr8 book too :P I'm a new follower and thought I'd drop by and say hi :) Feel free to check out my blog & follow too!

-Riya :) (The Teen Book Guru)

readingdate said...

Yes, definitely prefer your cover over the US one. This book is fun, and I loved all the 90s references. Liked the commentary on FB in the book - FB really is weird, isn't it? Glad you enjoyed the book. I'll have to read one of Mackler's other books sometime.

YA Anonymous said...

I love that even when you pick an American book, the Aussie cover is still 100x better. The concept of this sounds super cute and I literally laughed out loud at the screensaver mention. I love movies like Big and 13 Going on 30 so maybe I'll give this a try after all. -M

Beth said...

AMAZING review!! I loved this book! Awesome blog! I'm a new follower! :)

Beth xx

Kristin Feliz said...

You may or may not (MAY) have just sold me with this book! I am actually really excited to read it now!!

Linny @ Linnys Literature said...

Thanks for the review! The story line for this one sounds unique and interesting. I haven't read any time travel type books yet surprisingly. Sounds like it's funny too! Glad to hear you enjoyed this one! :)

Kristin said...

How am I just now hearing about this book. It sounds fantastic! I must admit though, it's hard and scary when I try to remember the EEEEE RRRRRRR CHHHHHH dial up noise and all those AOL CD's that I had to get free internet. LoL I am definitely adding this to my list.

Wendy Darling said...

I'm not sure this is the book for me, Mandee--I have a love or hate relationship with a lot of realistic fiction, but I'm glad you liked this as much as you did!

P.S. I'm only ever on Facebook for my blog now, hah. ;)

Wendy @ The Midnight Garden

Books And Beyond said...

I have been very interested in this book. I am still not sure if its for me or not though. Your review rocked.
I love the kitties that model with all the books!
My babies would only sit that still if they were sleeping! lolz.
Or if I put food next to the book :)

roro said...

gr8 review mandee
there were times that i wanted to read it, then not and now i want to read it again lol
i'm weird

happy easter this weekend

Brodie said...

Absolutely agree with everything you wrote about this! It took me a few chapters to really get into the groove, but once I found my bearings I did adore this novel. And oh my, all the nostalgic flashbacks. Alright, so I was born 1990, so the max I would have been in the 90's is 10... but still! I remember so much of the stuff.

Emma definitely annoyed me at times, but I can see how something like that can consume you. If I had a window into the future, I'd be on it faster than you can say Quiddith :P

I also love the Aussie cover MUCH more. Anyway, fabulous review!

Novels On The Run said...

I haven't cracked this open yet. I loved your thoughts on the book and it makes me want to read it sooner.

Oh I am laughing up above at Brodie being max only 10 in 90's......sigh, wouldn't that have been lovely:D:D


p.s. I love the pussy cats!!

Sarah (saz101) said...

SOOOO glad you liked this! The AMAZING Celine sent me a copy, and I've been itching to read it ever since! It sounds like SOOO much fun, and I'm so intrigued to meet Emma... she doesn't seem like the NICEST character, but I'm TOTALLY intrigued! Eeee!

Mandee said...

Kim - I think you'll enjoy it when you get to it!

Erin - I'm glad you enjoyed it too!

Em - I'm sure we could have had a bit more added to the story, it was quite a short book

Flann - I'm with you on the Fb hate!

Magan - I think you will enjoy this and yes, I always feel sorry for the guy who doesn't get his feelings reciprocated :(

Jac - I'm happy you loved this book as well!

Cel - I know quite a few readers found Emma annoying but she didn't annoy me too much!

Maja - maybe it won't be for you, I think we must have the complete opposites in taste when it comes to books!

Jasprit - this book was like remembering our lives in the 90s, I hope you enjoy it!

Sam - I think you will really like this :)

Shirley - I know, some people really disliked Emma so I was prepared to hate her but for some reason I didn't!

Nicola - thanks & I hope you like it :)

Heidi - I hope you enjoy it, I look forward to your review! I think you'll like it if you remember the 90s well!

Beverley - thanks for dropping by & for following our blog :)

Heather - so many people are getting a kick out of the AOL reference!

Riya - thanks for following us, we'll return the favour!

Lucy - I really enjoy all of Carolyn's book, I hope you do too!

Mags - I hope you like this, it was a fun look-back at the 90s!

Beth - thanks for following us, glad you loved this too!

Kristin - glad I could convince you to read this!

Linny - thanks for dropping by, it was quite a fun read!

Kristin - I love that you made the modem noise, it's a sound I remember well!

Wendy - I didn't know that you don't like a lot of realistic fiction!

Francine - my cats are pretty good at sitting still, if they were kittens I'd have no chance!

Roro - I hope you read it and enjoy it!

Brodie - I love how even though you were a kidlet, you remember a lot of the 90s!

Michelle - I hope you like it when you get to read it! And I know, some bloggers are such youngins!

Saz - I was unsure about Emma, but I didn't mind her that much! And yay for Cel!

Meg said...

I really liked this book. It was a fun change of pace from all the fantasy and dystopian lit I've been reading. I had gotten an advance copy of it a while back, and blazed through it in no time. I absolutely LOVED the 90s references!! I'm really glad you liked this one, too, but I have yet to come across any teens at my library that have liked it yet. Whatever, though, maybe they'll come around.

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