Jay Asher writes contemporary young adult novels, the first of which was the New York Times bestselling novel Thirteen Reasons Why. Carolyn is widely known for her teen novels as well, notably Love and Other Four-Letter Words and The Earth, My Butt, and Other Big Round Things (which won the Michael L. Printz award). These two have combined their considerable writing talents to write The Future of Us.
It’s 1996 and very few high school students have ever used the internet. Facebook will not be invented until several years in the future. Emma just got a computer and an America Online CD. She and her best friend Josh power it up and log on – and discover themselves on Facebook in 2011. Everybody wonders what they’ll be like fifteen years in the future. Josh and Emma are about to find out.
While this is a contemporary novel, the time warp nature of the Facebook page allows me to review it under the Speculative Fiction banner (I hope!). This is such an interesting book – it really took me back to when I was just starting high school and this internet thing was all the rage. The descriptions in the book are authentic – the internet was that slow, the music was that great, and Discman’s did need to be strapped to your arm!
Aside from the nostalgia that sprang up while reading The Future of Us, I really enjoyed the characters in the book. I thought Emma was a bit too controlling and demanding of her best friend, but she was genuine in all her actions and I found her endearing. Josh was such a nice guy – I really liked him and loved reading from his point of view. Telling the story from dual perspectives lent power to the story – it made it easier to see the consequences of Josh and Emma’s interactions.
This is a lovely read, which I recommend to everyone because it explores the nature of friendships and the ways in which small decisions can affect our long-term relationships. The book made me re-think the things I say on my Facebook page!
About the book:
- Date published: 5 January 2012
- Publisher: Simon & Schuster (Australia)
- Format: Paperback, 368 pages
- ISBN 13: 9780857076076 ISBN 10: 0857076078
- Categories: Young adult
- Goodreads / The Book Depository