Friday, June 1, 2012

The Future of Us

Sometimes you find a book that you just can't put down.  One of 2011's most popular YA novels, The Future of Us by Jay Asher and Carolyn Mackler, was like that for me.  I am far from being a teen any longer, but I do live with one, and have vague memories of what it was like back then, in the 90's.

I went to the library last weekend and saw a big poster for the Teen Authorfest, coming up June 16th.  (I love that my local library is always having these cool events) I checked out the sign and glanced over the four authors who would be making an appearance.  Having an interest in the YA category, and needing another good read, I thought I'd pick one of these author's books to read next.  I meandered over to the A section, and perused the first of Asher's books.  Thirteen Reasons Why stayed on the NY Times Bestseller list for endless weeks in 2011, but I picked the second, because it sounded slightly more intriguing. 

It's 1996, and two unlikely teens log on to a brand new computer to check out the Internet for the first time.  What do they find?  facebook.  But... facebook hadn't been invented yet.

So begins a compelling story of discovery.  The two main characters are shocked and awed by what they read on facebook, a strange website where people share every minute detail of their daily lives.  The even weirder thing is that they find themselves, fifteen years into the future and talking about their own lives.  As they meander through their present days, they alter things every moment, and these changes alter what their future facebook accounts show the next time they log on. 

This book is well written, fast paced, and utterly un-put-downable.  After I finished it in three days, I passed it on to my resident teen.  She started reading at dinner time one evening, and did not surface again until she had finished it 4 hours later.  Impressive book, to say the least.

If you were a teen once, particularly in the 90's, if you have a facebook account, or if you just like good stories, check this one out.  It will never let you look at your facebook page the same way again.  I hear it's even going to be a movie eventually.  Well, the book's always better. 

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