Thursday, April 8, 2010

Life As We Knew It, by Susan Beth Pfeffer

I began this because one of my interns will be working with it this spring. It was a great read--a book that captured an afternoon and kept me from other work I should be doing. It's an apocalypse book (distopia--end of days). The basic plot line is that an asteroid hits the moon and changes earth's climate. Miranda, our protagonist, is a junior in high school with an older (college aged) and younger brother. Her parents are divorced. She is having a fairly typical adolescence until the asteroid hits.

What follows is a story of a mother's love and courage. Also a story of an adolescent (and her brothers) having to meet, accept, and overcome disaster. It is well crafted, believable, and explores a quite believable series of disastrous events. I some ways it reminded me of Laura Ingles Wilder's The Long Winter.

At first I was a little uneasy that this was going to be a "Rapture" book. It's not. However it does have a fundamentalist preacher/church as one of the secondary characters. Teachers will need to be prepared to deal with some religious questions. I wonder if it will become a challenged book.

Lexile 770. Recommended 6-12 grades. Multiple awards:

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