I Finished A Book This Weekend!
This World We Live In
By Susan Beth Pfeffer
[#21 in my 52 Book Challenge]
Why did I wait so long to read this? This World We Live In is the third book in the Last Survivors trilogy and I couldn’t put it down.
The first book, Life As We Knew It (my #5 favorite book), is told through Miranda’s diary entries. Miranda records how a meteor hits the moon, knocking it closer to the earth and unleashing a string of natural disasters that result in a slow, steady apocalypse. Volcano eruptions have left an atmosphere of ash around the earth that blocks out the sun and creates a climate of bitter cold. Life gets progressively worse as Miranda and her family struggle for food and warmth.
The second book, The Dead and the Gone, is really a companion book. It tells the story of Alex Morales, living through the same events in New York City. He must scavenge the streets and try to protect his two sisters, since he has no idea where his parents are.
This World We Live In brings these two stories together. The first two books have a lot of sad, terrible deaths (including one of the most terrible deaths I have ever read in literature). Now there are very few people left. Homes are abandoned and there are piles of bodies in the fields. Miranda and her family, as well as the six guests that have arrived at their home, must try to stay alive for as long as they can. Things never get better, they only get worse. The entire series is truly depressing, and this book is even moreseo because things go from bad to worse.
What I love about this book (and the others) is that there is no happy ending. The world is a grim place. Period. No other books I have read are like that. Even though it’s depressing, it’s also gripping. Pfeffer writes in such a way that even the mundane daily tasks and struggle to stay alive are gripping and thrilling. The pages are thick with tension, frustration, and fear of the future. However, there are glimmers of hope. The endings of each book are hopeful. Miranda’s family does have some fun and they share a lot of love. It reminds me that, even under the worst situations, we are still human and need each other.
What I didn’t like about the final book was the romance. The idea of romance is certainly appealing, but the way Pfeffer wrote it felt forced. I didn’t believe that these characters fell in love. Yes, things are different when there are few people left on earth. But something was still missing to make me really root for any of the pairings. Overall, though, the book was excellent and worth purchasing for my personal collection. A must read (after the first two, of course). If you need any more convincing, I will conclude this review with the book trailer for the series. Watch it!