Life As We Knew It (Last Survivors, #1)by Published 01 Oct 2006
|Life As We Knew It (Last Survivors, #1).pdf|
|Publisher||HMH Books for Young Readers|
Miranda’s disbelief turns to fear in a split second when a meteor knocks the moon closer to the earth. How should her family prepare for the future when worldwide tsunamis wipe out the coasts, earthquakes rock the continents, and volcanic ash blocks out the sun? As summer turns to Arctic winter, Miranda, her two brothers, and their mother retreat to the unexpected safe haven of their sunroom, where they subsist on stockpiled food and limited water in the warmth of a wood-burning stove.
Told in journal entries, this is the heart-pounding story of Miranda’s struggle to hold on to the most important resource of all--hope--in an increasingly desperate and unfamiliar world.
Life As We Knew It (Last Survivors, #1) Reviews
I'm all for the "survival of the fittest when tragedy strikes" novels. I normally like the hardcore kind. Given this was a young adult novel, I didn't expect it to be graphic, violent or truly horrific which is why I went into it expecting more light-hearted fiction -- and that's what I got. Nothing too clever or deep, but it did make me sad a few times.
The characters are basic, the plot typical for this type of novel. The science of it all could be valid; I'm not exactly sure what I'd expect to happen if an asteroid hit the moon and caused it to completely change the climate of the earth. Good description of the new type of snow and lack of sunlight.
What I hoped we got more of was the impact on the rest of the country. I get that the point of the book is what specifically happens to this one family, but the author just throws out most of the eastern seaboard is washed away and hundreds of thousands of people died. I would have expected millions to die in NYC alone since the impact took all of 5 minutes -- no one had time to run for cover. I want to know what happens to the country as a whole... but maybe that's going beyond the border of the series.
In the end, I find myself wanting to see what happens to the family in the next book so the author has done well!
Now I know a one star is pretty bad but when I put my cursor over the one star it says didn't like it and I did not like this book at all. I'm not going to go into full detail because it would torture me but heres the plot: You are reading about a family that lives in Pennsylvania and the character Miranda is a teenage girl living with her mom and brother. Scientists say that a meteor is going to hit the moon, and everyone doesn't really care about being a doomsday because the scientists say there wont be. Well the meteor did hit and cerated a Doomsday. In the first few days The family has to survive while the Moon got closer to the earth because of the impact. The Moon gets so close that the gravitational pull creates hurricanes, and other natural disasters. Somehow the author thought that a meteor could do that.
This book is a horrible end of the world book, it has at most 15 pages of excitement. Seriously other then that its like reading a dictionary, other then the 15 pages of robbing a supermarket, you have to read about people dieing of old age and reading about a teen that writes in her diary.
Now this character is the most boring character I have ever read about. In the Diary all you read about is how life sucks in a house. I'm being completely serious. The whole book is about a family surviving in a house and trying to get food and firewood. There is No suspense, No plot, No plot twists, No Excitement, No everything. This book remains the same, for 400 or so pages, it never changes, all you read about is surviving in a house and reading about the teen doing homework, and eating.
Overall I hated this book, I really did. I love exciting books and slow dramatic books but this one has nothing to it.
Opening Line:“Lisa is pregnant. Dad called around 11 o’clock to let us know.”
I loved this, easily one of my top reads this year; although maybe love isn’t the right word because this book scared the crap out of me. It also depressed me, made me very cold and gave me OCD about stockpiling food. I mean just how long could I survive on what’s in my cupboards? Not very. Three boxes of Kraft Dinner and a jar of spaghetti sauce are hardly going to see me through a wintery apocalypse now are they? (Although that bottle of gin will come in handy)
As much as this book messed with my head, I also couldn’t stop reading it, fascinated in a morbid sort of way. I’ve heard it compared to a car accident and that’s true, once you start this you won’t be able to look away.
Life As We Knew It is written in diary form, from the POV of 16year old Miranda. The entries start just prior to a meteor hitting the moon and initially her accounts are self-absorbed, and annoying in fact she comes off kind of spoiled, which let’s face it, is realistic for a high school girl. I think the author probably did this on purpose to show us what her life and thoughts were like ‘before’ and how much she grows as a person by the end of this harrowing story.
Miranda lives with her mother and younger brother (with another brother away at college). Her father has remarried and is expecting a baby with his new wife. Nobody is paying much attention to the astronomers or the moon. I mean at 16 it’s all about you, everything else is just an annoyance. In May the meteor knocks the moon out of its orbit and everything changes.
Miranda’s mother is the real hero of this story, having the foresight to begin amassing food and winter clothes, (candles, batteries, water) while the rest of the world watches and waits. The power is the first to go, then Tsunamis take out anyone on the coasts, earthquakes rock the continents and volcanic ash quickly blocks out the sun. We the readers remain mostly naïve about world events because we only know what Miranda writes in her diary and she’s stopped listening to the news only occasionally giving us tidbit from rare radio broadcast that now mostly consist of death lists but soon even the radio stops.
As summer turns to arctic winter and disease threatens those left alive Miranda’s world grows smaller and smaller. School is cancelled, her friends have either moved or died and gathering firewood and water takes up most of her day. She has little strength left because she is starving and her family has moved into one room to conserve the small amount of heat the wood stove is putting out. It is cold, blinding snow storms and ash fill the sky, the food is almost gone, the food is almost gone! When she thinks about last week she wonders why she ever complained because she had it so much better, last week she was eating one meal a day, now she’s eating every second day and wondering just how much longer her family can survive. She hopes she goes first.
Life As We Knew It (Last Survivors #1) by Susan Beth Pfeffer is a book that sounded so intriguing and it certainly was! A giant asteroid hits the moon from the dark side ( I think) and it had a greater force than expected and pushes the moon out of it's normal orbit, path, rotation, and closer to Earth!!! This book follows one family before and after as everything goes to h#ll right away as tidal waves surge again and again, then more and more disaster happen due to the different forces of the gravitational pull. Other things happen too! Very thrilling and exciting book! Glad I found it! Who knew disasters could be so entertaining, lol, as long as it's in a book!
Life on Earth changes suddenly for humanity when a large asteroid strikes the moon, knocking it closer to the planet. The tides change, weather gets more violent, and volcanoes begin erupting. One day 16-year old Miranda is a typical teenager....and the next she finds herself fighting for her life. What would happen if society ended? Miranda keeps a daily diary about what happens after the abrupt end of modern society.
Life As We Knew it is the first of four books in the Last Survivors series. I enjoy dystopian stories and disaster movies, so I knew I would like this series. And I do....but....
There's always a but, isn't there.....so let's get that "but'' out of the way before I talk about what I like about this series.
It is not possible for an asteroid to strike the moon and knock it closer to the planet earth. I looked up multiple scientific articles on it written by astronomers, scientists, astrophysicists.....and they all basically said it's not a possible scenario. Even if an asteroid measuring 600-miles across hit the moon, it would not alter its orbit. It would just add another huge crater to its surface. It would take a moon-sized object hitting the moon to have a big enough effect on it to wobble it even just a little bit out of its current path.....and that hard of a strike would most likely just obliterate the moon, not shove it into a closer orbit with our planet. The logical side of my brain had a difficult time engaging with this story at first while it was mulling over the moon strike scenario. I had to put the book down, look up the facts and sift through a lot of science before I could return to the story.
In the end, the impossible (or highly improbable) nature of the disaster itself did not hurt my enjoyment of this book. The real impact of the plot is not about what would happen on Earth if the moon was in a closer orbit....but what would happen to humanity and society if there was a permanent, disastrous change to the climate on our world. What would happen in the months and years following an extinction level event? And how would a family deal with surviving surrounded by constant danger, death and uncertainty? This book paints a very real picture of what daily life could become following such an event. Miranda learns quickly about death, starvation, sickness, uncertainty, natural dangers, and loneliness. Things we take for granted now would be of greater significance in a world where modern society no longer exists.
The series is written for the Young Adult audience so there is no graphic sex, violence or grisly death scenes. But, Pfeffer pulls no punches. Death, illness and human frailty are at the forefront of this story. I wouldn't recommend this series for kids under 13. The theme would be a bit too much for younger kids. There is no miraculous happy ending offered, or sweet love story to cover up the stark horrors. This isn't that sort of YA story.....this is hard hitting and thought provoking. I found myself thinking about how my family would react to a similar incident. Could we survive? And, what would happen in the small town I live in if we were all suddenly cut off from modern conveniences and society? Would we all band together to survive? Or would things rapidly descend into violence? I hope I never have to find out.
Life As We Knew It is a story about love and hope in a time where all hope seems lost. So despite the disaster itself being far-fetched, I found myself completely lost in this story. I couldn't put the book down and stayed up until 3 am to finish reading. Excellent start to a series....I am definitely reading the other 3 books!
Susan Beth Pfeffer is the author of several YA books. Check out her blog: http://susanbethpfeffer.blogspot.com/