Below, you'll also find my review of THE FUTURE OF US. You may notice I say nothing about the awesomeness of the authors. I wanted to focus on the book, because that's what reviews do. But let it be known, they are awesome, in that same way that cereal covered donuts are awesome.
THE FUTURE OF US
by Jay Asher and Carolyn Mackler
Summary: It's 1996, and less than half of all American high school students have ever used the Internet.
Emma just got her first computer and an America Online CD-ROM.
Josh is her best friend. They power up and log on--and discover themselves on Facebook, fifteen years in the future.
Everybody wonders what their Destiny will be. Josh and Emma are about to find out.
Teenagers from 1996 stumbling across some time warp glitch in a computer to discover their Facebook identities fifteen years later? SOLD. In fact, I liked the premise so much I was a little dubious. So often I get excited about a book only to read it and find myself curling into a fetal position, ripping my hair out in clumps. But, just so you know, one day. That's it. That's what it took me to read this book. I set aside my entire life just to read this. Happily.
Okay, so I love 1996. For obvious reasons. So I won't mention them here. But I will say those reasons make it into the book. You'll see. If you were a teenager in 1996 and on Facebook today, reading THE FUTURE OF US makes you feel like you're a part of a secret club where you know the secret handshake and all the inside jokes. BUT. The cool thing is you don't have to have been a teenager in 1996 to get it. And to love it. You don't have to have been alive, even. If you're a teenager today, you'll read it and probably scoff at the idiocy of us poor schmucks who carted around gigantic Discmans to go jogging, in the same way we old people laugh at those even older people who wore plaid bell bottoms like on purpose. So, there's that aspect of it--laughing at prehistoric times, which always makes for good reading.
But also, and more importantly, there's a story here. A solid, beautiful story. Friendship, love, hopes, dreams, fears--everything all teenagers face whether it's 1996 or 2011. Indeed, everything we face at any age. But as teens, we don't always know that. It's impossible to imagine a life of experience when our experiences have been so limited. So, yeah, we all want to see our futures because there's just no picture our minds can realistically conjure of them yet, not as teens (or maybe ever). But man, how dangerous if it actually happens, right? Have we learned nothing from BACK TO THE FUTURE? Well, yeah, that getting a view of your grown-up self makes for glorious fiction. I still get a huge kick out of stories like THIRTEEN GOING ON THIRTY, BIG and now THE FUTURE OF US. It's an exploration of possibility and consequence. As teenagers, many of us said we had no idea what we wanted out of our lives, but really, come on, we knew. We knew. And we sort of thought we'd get it right? A happy ending. Pshaw! Here's what you learn in THE FUTURE OF US: there's no such thing as a happy ending. Or a sad ending. Err...or an ending. There's just a happy or a sad now, your choice.
What I love most, and what makes this such an original story is that these characters don't actually travel to the future. They merely get to see it, AND see how the things they do (and change) in the present affect those fragile futures of theirs. It's a bit of an eye-opener. Just imagine seeing your future change with every choice you make, small or big--how powerful you might feel, and equally helpless, because not all actions are within our control. THE FUTURE OF US is more than just a cool comedy/fantasy/romance about two teenagers who get to see their futures on Facebook. It's a poignant exploration of identity and longing and a touching look into the lives of two teenagers who circumnavigate extraordinary circumstances to find each other in their ordinary lives.
Today, I'm offering
ARC of THE FUTURE OF US, Signed by both Jay Asher and Carolyn Mackler
This giveaway is international and ends Monday, October 24, midnight EST. You must be 13 years old to enter. If you win, you will need to provide an address for shipment. Under 18's must have parent/guardian permission to enter.
Click Here to Enter the Signed Jay Asher Giveaway
This Giveaway has now closed. Here are the winners:
Signed ARC of THE FUTURE OF US
Signed THIRTEEN REASONS WHY
Congratulations winners! Please email me an address to which I can send your book. Thanks so much to all that entered. Stay tuned for the next giveaway!
Winners of my last giveaway (ASHFALL, WITHOUT TESS, UNFORSAKEN, TRIS & IZZIE) are posted HERE.
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