Saturday, March 20, 2010

24. How I Live Now by Meg Rosoff

"Rosoff's story begins in modern day London, slightly in the future, and as its heroine has a 15-year-old Manhattanite called Daisy. She's picked up at the airport by Edmond, her English cousin, a boy in whose life she is destined to become intricately entwined. Daisy stays at her Aunt Penn's country farmhouse for the summer with Edmond and her other cousins. They spend some idyllic weeks together--often alone with Aunt Penn away travelling in Norway. Daisy's cousins seem to have an almost telepathic bond, and Daisy is mesmerized by Edmond and soon falls in love with him.

But their world changes forever when an unnamed aggressor invades England and begins a years-long occupation. Daisy and Edmond are separated when soldiers take over their home, and Daisy and Piper, her younger cousin, must travel to another place to work. Their experiences of occupation are never kind and Daisy's pain, living without Edmond, is tangible." Review

This book was a strange reading experience for me.  The lack of punctuation and run-on, long, long, long, sentences took some getting used to; but were actually perfect for the voice of Daisy.  She is such a conflicted character and watching her grow up made the book.  She was not appealing at all at first; and it was slow going there for a while; but things pick up and the story becomes so compelling.  This is not a pretty story, but very realistic and thought-provoking.   I liked how a young reviewer on related to setting a war in England in the future without the constraints of actual history but with the all-too-real burdens of the deprivations, grief and hardships of war.  I did struggle with the ending of the book, not the fact that it was not a fairy-tale, happily-ever-after ending; but that it seemed to end so abruptly.  I just needed some more details.  But overall, I found it to be a well-written, topical and fascinating book. 
Rating:  4
Catching Up Challenge

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