Title: The Here and Now
Author: Ann Brashares
Purchased: ARC Netgalley
Publication Date: April 8, 2014!
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.
Let’s start out with the obvious, this is a short book about time travel. I liked it… but I didn’t find it particularly interesting, maybe because I am not a huge fan of time travel books. With that said, I tried to put my differences aside with this genre and produce unbiased opinion of the book not including the genre.
As I mentioned, the novel was short. I think around 288 pages and that just is seemingly too few words to properly develop characters while writing in the style that Brashares utilizes. I think it was well written and captivating, but not entirely convincing. The relationship between Prenna and Ethan moves too quickly to be believable. Sure, she tells us that they have been friends for a while, but one scene during school isn’t going to prove that to me. And if we as readers couldn’t understand their friendship, what makes a romance any easier?!
Something else that I was not pleased with was the way in which information was presented for the reader, aka it was not. I felt that a lot of things happening in the story just… happened. They were random and could not have been predicted, in a bad way. They weren’t surprises, they were confusing. Like, really. The person who was supposed to be the ‘bad guy’ didn’t even know he was doing anything wrong.
So yeah, that’s my unbiased review, but maybe, if you are into this sort of thing, short time travel novels, you’ll enjoy it more than I did. So get ready because it comes out in five days!