How I Live Now by Meg Rosoff {Audio Review}

02e0a9c2 a591 4b9e 8557 80c63bf2f7ff zps2c4023d7 How I Live Now by Meg Rosoff {Audio Review}Title: How I Live Now
Author: Meg Rosoff
Narrator: Kim Mai Guest
Publisher: April 12th 2005 by Listening Library
Format: Audio CDs, 4 hrs and 13 mins
Source: Library
3 owls How I Live Now by Meg Rosoff {Audio Review}

Summary

“Every war has turning points and every person too.”

Fifteen-year-old Daisy is sent from Manhattan to England to visit her aunt and cousins she’s never met: three boys near her age, and their little sister. Her aunt goes away on business soon after Daisy arrives. The next day bombs go off as London is attacked and occupied by an unnamed enemy.

As power fails, and systems fail, the farm becomes more isolated. Despite the war, it’s a kind of Eden, with no adults in charge and no rules, a place where Daisy’s uncanny bond with her cousins grows into something rare and extraordinary. But the war is everywhere, and Daisy and her cousins must lead each other into a world that is unknown in the scariest, most elemental way.

A riveting and astonishing story.

My thoughts

This is a very different story, in that it’s insular, mainly just focusing on the kids holed up on a farm somewhere. The adults only appear briefly, and really aren’t needed by the kids, anyway. Not quite dystopian, this is more of a war-time general young adult book that could almost be dystopian in its ambiance.

It was a bit frustrating for me, in that we never learned the answers to what I thought were important questions: what year did this story take place in? Who was fighting in the war, and why? Perhaps we never learned these answers because Daisy couldn’t care less; she even mentioned that the people who were dying in the war weren’t important because she didn’t know them. This made her selfish and unlikable in my eyes. I don’t care how young you are, when there’s something this major going on in your life, you notice. You care, even if it’s just a little.

The characters that we spend the most time with, Daisy, Edmond, Piper, Isaac and Osbert, were varied and they each had their own quirks and personalities. They all grew and matured throughout the story, which I liked. They truly became their own little family unit during the war, they made each other feel safe. Daisy and her love interest do not have insta-love, rather, their relationship was based on friendship and, let’s be honest, mostly convenience. Would it have happened without the war and the situations that followed? Most definitely not. But, it was nice that they found each other when they each needed someone the most.

Even though the audio is a very short 4 hours, the story seemed to move very slowly and it dragged a bit for me. Of course, that could have been because of the story. Though the kids found a way to get along and survive, the general tone of the book struck me as depressing. Besides war, it also covered such dark subjects as anorexia, family relationships, suffering, friendship, mental health and survival.

This is probably one of those instances where the audio version was a better choice than the print version.

The sum up

Sad and a bit long-winded, this is still a book worth reading if you like contemporary stories.

Connect with the author

4184e5a7 5060 4fc2 9dd9 426136e51499 zps5a093b1d How I Live Now by Meg Rosoff {Audio Review}
Meg Rosoff was born in Boston and had three or four careers in publishing and advertising before she moved to London in 1989, where she lives now with her husband and daughter. Formerly a Young Adult author, Meg has earned numerous prizes including the highest American and British honors for YA fiction: the Michael L. Printz Award and the Carnegie Medal.

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Other opinions

Pure Imagination
Presenting Lenore
One Librarian’s Book Reviews

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