The Rest of Us Just Live Here by Patrick Ness

Posted October 1, 2015 by Sara | Novel Novice 1 Comment

Book-Reviews-YA
Any YA reader has probably asked themselves what they would do if they found themselves in the same situation as the protagonist of the book they were reading. What if you volunteered for the Hunger Games? What if you fell in love with a 100-year-old vampire? What if you were chosen to save society?

the rest of us just live hereBut what about everybody else in those stories? The kids on the sidelines who just get caught up in the drama and the action, but aren’t actively involved.

That is precisely what author Patrick Ness explores in his latest book, The Rest of Us Just Live Here.

What if you aren’t the Chosen One?

The one who’s supposed to fight the zombies, or the soul-eating ghosts, or whatever the heck this new thing is, with the blue lights and the death?

What if you’re like Mikey? Who just wants to graduate and go to prom and maybe finally work up the courage to ask Henna out before someone goes and blows up the high school. Again.

Because sometimes there are problems bigger than this week’s end of the world, and sometimes you just have to find the extraordinary in your ordinary life.

Even if your best friend is worshiped by mountain lions.

Award-winning writer Patrick Ness’s bold and irreverent novel powerfully reminds us that there are many different types of remarkable.

The book at once skewers and celebrates the “chosen one” trope so prevalent in YA literature (and pop culture at large; Buffy, anyone?). And it’s not just the paranormal that falls under Ness’s radar; he even takes a hilarious (and yes, much-needed) jab at the plethora of “teens-with-cancer” books that hit store shelves following the success of The Fault in Our Stars.

Ness deftly and cleverly shows that even in the midst of an apocalypse, life goes on. If you’re not the Chosen One, you still have finals to study for. Prom to attend. Family drama to deal with. A crush who may or may not like you back. The mundane goes on, even if it’s not normally in the spotlight when the story is focused on the savior at the center of a crisis. The bystanders have lives, too … and most of them would prefer not to become collateral damage.

With The Rest of Us Just Live Here, Ness has dreamed up a world where crazy things happen all the time, and the regular kids have just learned to keep their heads down, stay out of the way, and cope.

The Rest of Us Just Live Here is beautifully written and cleverly plotted; brimming with imagination, wit, and charm, it is a must-read for any fan of YA literature. Look for it in stores October 6th.

Sara | Novel Novice
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