The Here and Now
by Ann Brashares
Genres: Young Adult, SciFi, Dystopian
An unforgettable epic romantic thriller about a girl
from the future who might be able to save the world
if she lets go of the one thing she’s found to hold on to.
Follow the rules. Remember what happened. Never fall in love.
This is the story of seventeen-year-old Prenna James, who immigrated to New York when she was twelve. Except Prenna didn’t come from a different country. She came from a different time—a future where a mosquito-borne illness has mutated into a pandemic, killing millions and leaving the world in ruins.
Prenna and the others who escaped to the present day must follow a strict set of rules: never reveal where they’re from, never interfere with history, and never, ever be intimate with anyone outside their community. Prenna does as she’s told, believing she can help prevent the plague that will one day ravage the earth.
But everything changes when Prenna falls for Ethan Jarves.
From Ann Brashares, the #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants series, The Here and Now is thrilling, exhilarating, haunting, and heartbreaking—and a must-read novel of the year.
I don't know what to say about this book. It wasn't so bad that I couldn't finish it. But it wasn't good enough for me to be excited about reading and reviewing it. The blurb had my attention from the start. Coupled with the gorgeous cover, I knew I had to request it. But I feel like the synopsis was the most exciting part of the book.
The story felt choppy to me in the beginning. I really had to push through to get into it. Even though the idea could have been great, it really fell flat for me. The characters didn't feel developed. I had zero attachment to any of them, and I was often more annoyed with them than the glaringly obvious plot holes. I don't know. I just had zero interest from the beginning, and I was never able to find anything to be interested in as the story went on.
The one thing that I
enjoyed admired about this book was the message. It was almost like the movie Idiocracy. The world ignored tell tale signs of trouble and reverted back to idiocy. At least that's how I took it. They lost the ability to speak even remotely like we do in less than one hundred years. Yeah. Apparently mothers aren't referred to by Mom anymore in one hundred years. I don't know at this point.
Can we stop here for a minute to talk about the cover confusion? I knew going into this that it was supposed to be a combination of time travel and dystopian. The cover is gorgeous, yeah? We can agree on that. But it totally gives off this mermaid vibe. Then at the beginning of the story, the love interest casually mentions Prenna (or was it Henny or Prenny or WhatsHerFace?) as like a mermaid whenever she materializes over a pond. I went on for a few pages thinking that the cover and that mention meant I should expect mermaids soon. There weren't mermaids. Just another layer to add to the confusion, I guess.
I don't know what else to say. This book was absolutely boring. I've felt more emotion while writing this review than I did the entire time I read The Here and Now.
**I received this book for free in exchange for an honest review. My thanks to NetGalley and Ann Brashares.