January 13, 2014

Review: Life As We Knew It by: Susan Beth Pfeffer

Life As We Knew It (The Last Survivors #1) by: Susan Beth Pfeffer (2006)
337 pages
Genre: YA/Survival
Publisher: HMH Books for Young Readers
Source: The Library
Goodreads Summary: Miranda’s disbelief turns to fear in a split second when a meteor knocks the moon closer to the earth. How should her family prepare for the future when worldwide tsunamis wipe out the coasts, earthquakes rock the continents, and volcanic ash blocks out the sun? As summer turns to Arctic winter, Miranda, her two brothers, and their mother retreat to the unexpected safe haven of their sunroom, where they subsist on stockpiled food and limited water in the warmth of a wood-burning stove.

Told in journal entries, this is the heart-pounding story of Miranda’s struggle to hold on to the most important resource of all--hope--in an increasingly desperate and unfamiliar world.

My Review

A friend I work with was shocked when I told her I hadn’t read this book. Actually, I hadn’t even heard of it. She promised me that it was exactly the kind of book that I would like and that I should read it. So I did, and I’m really glad I did. Life As We Knew It did not disappoint.

Here is my long list of reasons as to why you should read Life As We Knew It:
  • Family is present and central in this book. This doesn’t happen very often in a lot of young adult books so this was a very nice change. I love the family relationships between mother and daughter and the siblings.
  • The book is told in journal entry format. I love when authors differ from the norm in how they tell their story.
  • There is this one scene with Miranda’s mother that blew my mind, was hilarious, and I could relate to it (I would have done the same thing she did). When they realize s*** is about to hit the fan her mom begins to stock up for the worse, and her trip with the kids to the local super market to get all the food and other supplies they may need to survive is chaotic and just plain entertaining.
  • Life As We Knew It is one of the better survival stories I have ever read. It was interesting to see how the community, Miranda and her family, and the world reacted to the moon incident. It also seemed very real, like maybe I should have an emergency pantry stocked with food and water just in case. This is a survival story at its finest.
  • Miranda grows throughout the book, making her so very real. She also never annoyed me, (which is a huge plus) and acts like a teenager when logical but also steps up as an adult when needed. I also liked all the other characters as well.
Here are the two minor issues I had with Life As We Knew It:
  • There isn’t a lot of action and the book is kind of slow at times, but that didn’t keep me from being engrossed in Miranda’s story so it wasn't a horrible thing.
  • It seemed a little weird that the scientists had no idea the moon was going to be hit hard enough to be pushed closer to Earth causing full blown chaos, but I’m no scientist and the book was too good for me to care about that small tiny detail.
So obviously I think you should read Life As We Knew It. Some people may not like the slower pace or how it is written in journal entries, but I still think it is worth a try. It is a great choice for all those survival story enthusiasts! I can’t wait to read the other books in the series, luckily I snagged them all from the library right after I finished this one.


  1. I think the the fact that it's written in journal entries is really interesting! But I think I will need to be in the mood for this one since it's slower paced. I hadn't heard of it either but I didn't really dive into YA until 2012... Great review!

    1. I really liked the journal entries. I hadn't heard of it either, but I'm glad my friend told me about it! Since it is slower paced I agree that you have to be in the right mood for it.

  2. Wow, I haven't heard of Life As We Knew It, but it sounds like something I would really enjoy. It's seems to be a rare thing for YA books to have a positive family participating in the story. Plus, I like the idea behind the moon and the survival story due to it's displacement. Great review, Kay!

    1. Thanks! This was a great book. You should take a chance on it. I found the whole moon thing very interesting and I loved that family played such an important role, because like you said, it does seem rare that that happens.


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...
Copyright © 2015 It's a Book Life All Rights Reserved · All Logos & Trademark Belongs To Their Respective Owners | Template by These Paper Hearts
Back to Top