Thursday, April 3, 2014

[Review: The Here And Now by Ann Brashares]

"The Here and Now"
Author: Ann Brashares
Series: ?
Pages: 288
Genre: YA, Sci Fi, Thriller
Date Published: April 8th, 2014
Publisher: Delacorte Press
Format Read: eARC provided by publisher (via NetGalley) for honest review


An unforgettable epic romantic thriller about a girl from the future who might be able to save the world . . . if she lets go of the one thing she’s found to hold on to.

Follow the rules. Remember what happened. Never fall in love.

This is the story of seventeen-year-old Prenna James, who immigrated to New York when she was twelve. Except Prenna didn’t come from a different country. She came from a different time—a future where a mosquito-borne illness has mutated into a pandemic, killing millions and leaving the world in ruins.

Prenna and the others who escaped to the present day must follow a strict set of rules: never reveal where they’re from, never interfere with history, and never, ever be intimate with anyone outside their community. Prenna does as she’s told, believing she can help prevent the plague that will one day ravage the earth.

But everything changes when Prenna falls for Ethan Jarves.

From Ann Brashares, the #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants series, The Here and Now is thrilling, exhilarating, haunting, and heartbreaking—and a must-read novel of the year.

My Thoughts:

An Open Letter To The Here And Now,

I honestly don't know how you happened book?  Yes, I finished you and you were a quick read, but I don't like you at all.  You could have been great, but you just fell flat.  You took too much time trying to be a statement book instead of telling a story.  I know some people will like you more then I did and the fact that I'm not a big fan of time travel books most likely got in the way of us being pals, so I hope you find some out there somewhere...

-The White Unicorn

I hate to say it, but I'm extremely disappointed in this book.  I've said on multiple occasions on this blog that I'm a big fan of Brashares' Sisterhood books, so even though I'm not a fan of time travel, I gave this one a shot.  It just didn't work for me at all.  It still had that Ann Brashares thing that made you wanna finish it, but that doesn't mean that I loved it.  I wanted to love it and I was so excited for a new YA title after all these years, but this wasn't what I've been waiting for.  

I think my major issue with this book is that the main goal of the story was to save the world from this terrifying mosquito-borne illness.  That would have been awesome, if the book had actually focused on that, but the main plot got bogged down by the fact that all these other things came into play.  Other ways that we as human's were corrupting our future world.  I think the whole end of the world part of the novel needed a firm direction.  It needed to be one or the other.  Human's ruining the world, or a massive, deadly, bug carried virus.  Too much was going on and it made the virus seem less important and the rest of it seemed like Brashares was making a statement.  I believe that people should make loud statements, but they shouldn't just throw them in on top of their plot for making that statement for statements sake.  It created a lot of frustration for me as a reader.  And I found myself skimming parts of the book that didn't seem to fit in with the main directive of the novel.  

On the other hand Brashares has this unique writing voice that makes you want to find out what happens in the end.  Even though I wanted to quit this book, I kept reading because of the way that Brashares tells a story.  I wanted to see the end result of Prenna and Ethan's choices.  I also really liked the strong emphasis on free will.  It kept me guessing all the way to the end.  Was this book perfectly written?  Not at all.  But it did manage to keep me enthralled enough to finish it.

2 Unicorns = It was okay, but something just didn't work for me!


Tammy Sparks said...

Yeah, I really don't care for books that make blatant statements. To me that's not the purpose of telling a story. I just got a copy of this from the publisher so I'll probably read it at some point, but so far every review I've read is pretty much like yours:-(

Shane Morgan said...

Ouch! Sorry you didn't like this one. I'm still iffy about reading it. Thanks for the honest review.

Jess said...

Ahh, I'm really glad I saw this, because I was debating starting it today.

Kimi Barra said...

Oh, I'm sorry you didn't like this one! I never really thought of reading this, as the story sounds way too different from Sisterhood and I didn't think Brashares would be able to pull it off. Sad it was disappointing. Great review!

-Kimi at Geeky Chiquitas

Natalie Natflixandbooks said...

Meh. I have this book, but I'm so hesitant to read it. I loved the Sisterhood books, but hated both of her other books that weren't in that series. Especially that Memory book and this sounded definitely more in that vein. I'll probably give this a try, but I'll be going in with lowered expectations. Hope your next book is way better. Great review!

Nicole said...

I had already decided to skip this one but you're review is just icing on the cake. (Now I want cake).