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

by Susan Beth Pfeffer

Other authors: See the other authors section.

Series: The Last Survivors (1)

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingConversations / Mentions
4,1493721,206 (4.02)1 / 245
  1. 72
    The Road by Cormac McCarthy (JolieLouise)
  2. 40
    Into the Forest by Jean Hegland (EmJay, kellyholmes)
    EmJay: apocalyptic speculative fiction with teenage protagonists
  3. 30
    The Way We Fall by Megan Crewe (JRlibrary)
    JRlibrary: Both books deal with events that alter the way society works, and force people to either pitch in and help, or become selfish predators who care only for their own survival. Both are a bit slow to begin with, but build a very realistic portrayal of human behavior.… (more)
  4. 30
    World Made By Hand by James Howard Kunstler (ahstrick)
  5. 20
    Tomorrow, When The War Began by John Marsden (zimzimzoo)
    zimzimzoo: John Marsden's YA classic of survival and growing up during WWIII is sure to please.
  6. 42
    How I Live Now by Meg Rosoff (francescadefreitas)
  7. 10
    Armageddon Summer by Jane Yolen (kaledrina)
  8. 10
    Children of the Dust by Louise Lawrence (Aquila)
  9. 10
    The Forest of Hands and Teeth by Carrie Ryan (BrynDahlquis)
    BrynDahlquis: The apocalyptic/tragic plot is quite similar, though one has zombies and the other has a homicidal moon.
  10. 10
    A Canticle for Leibowitz by Walter M. Miller Jr. (KMAnderson)
    KMAnderson: Another view of how people survive civilization-threatening (or -ending) disasters.
  11. 11
    The Age of Miracles by Karen Thompson Walker (chazzard)
  12. 11
    How to Survive the End of the World as We Know It: Tactics, Techniques, and Technologies for Uncertain Times by James Wesley, Rawles (JolieLouise)
  13. 00
    After the Snow by S. D. Crockett (BookshelfMonstrosity)
  14. 00
    Earthquake 2099 by Mary W. Sullivan (bookel)
  15. 00
    Tunnels by Roderick Gordon (bookel)
  16. 00
    Found by June Oldham (bookel)
  17. 00
    Ashfall by Mike Mullin (kaledrina)
  18. 11
    Trapped by Michael Northrop (kaledrina)
  19. 03
    If I Stay by Gayle Forman (Aerrin99)
    Aerrin99: A great book about a teen girl dealing with tragedy, with a strong first-person voice.
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English (367)  German (4)  Norwegian (1)  French (1)  All (373)
Showing 1-5 of 367 (next | show all)
Great characters and family relationships. The situation is terrible, but having read Ashfall recently, this one just paled in comparison. Things are bleak, but never too bleak. Terrible, but still survivable. Overall people obeyed a code of ethics that I think would have gone out the window. Who paid the guards at the hospital? With what? Why didn't anyone raid someone's house if they were still alive, but weaker? Again, good book and interesting read, but I think it could have been more challenging. ( )
  VanChocStrawberry | Apr 2, 2018 |
I have not yet read this book.
  LynneQuan | Jan 30, 2018 |
Find more reviews like this at The Literary Phoenix.

In the beginning, Miranda was worried about skating lessons.

Life is normal. Her brother is coming home from college for the summer. Her step-mother is pregnant. She has three essays due on the same topic. Then a meteor hits the moon with enough force to move the celestial body and everything changes. Weather changes, communication goes out. Mayhem. The end of the world.

This story is Miranda's diary on the goings-on of life after everything changes.

I'm really glad I gave this book a chance.

I very nearly DNF'd this book a couple hours in. I didn't love the format, and Miranda annoyed me. The narrator wasn't my favorite. But I gave it a chance, telling myself "just wait for the apocalyptic part and then decide". When it happened, I was hooked.

The science of this book is really interesting and I think that's why I put it on my TBR in the first place, several years ago. Our celestial bodies are in such perfect alignment right now for the preservation of life - what would happen if something moved, just a little? That question is definitely explored here. This is the kind of science-fiction I enjoy. The subtle changes. Our world, but with one small difference. I think that Susan Beth Pfeffer did an excellent job exploring this question.

Miranda's evolution is subtle and perfect.

I really like that nobody's personality did a 180 after the event. It's such an issue for me in dystopias, especially apocalyptic ones, when meek people suddenly become Strong Incredible Characters. There's a difference between stepping up to the challenge and changing everything about who you are. All the characters in this book still had faults - the difference was that they adapted. Sometimes slowly! And they didn't always like it? I love realistic, imperfect characters like this. They are so much easier to relate to.

As I was listening to the audiobook, near the end, it occurred to me how much Miranda had changed from the beginning of the book and I hadn't even realized it. A good character evolution should sneak up on you like that. People change and grow that way - how often have you known someone to stand up and say "From now on, I am going to be less selfish!" and then magically it happens? No... changes in people are really subtle and Pfeffer did an AMAZING job of portraying this. Even though I hated Miranda in the beginning, I cared about her well-being by the end. She grows on you.

If you like subtle science fiction, this book is for you.

Life As We Knew It isn't in-your-face science and tech. It's simple. Basic. One small element of difference then a chain reaction of events. I really liked it for this element - it reminded me a bit of the ideas of H.G. Wells and Jules Verne. I'll be reading the sequel to this book, and I recommend this to anyone who is interested in apocalyptic stories or journal-format YA. ( )
  Morteana | Oct 10, 2017 |
Life As We Knew It begins with the diary entries of sixteen year old, Miranda Day. The whole country is watching TV the night an asteroid hits the moon, knocking it off its orbit and pushing it closer to Earth. Everything in Miranda’s normal life changes. Tidal waves destroy the coastlines while earthquakes destroy the cities. Inactive volcanoes erupt simultaneously worldwide, covering the sky with ash that blocks out the sun. The crops begin to die and starvation is a real problem. Winter comes early and there is no longer any fuel for heaters.

There are a lot of flaws in this book. There's no way astrophysicists would miscalculate the impact of an asteroid hitting the moon. There would be a lot more violence and food stealing than what goes on in this book. The political sniping in the book was annoying. Nevertheless, I still enjoyed reading it. It had a thought provoking plot that didn't incorporate the usual “fight and run” school of worldwide apocalypse. I think that it would certainly be of interest to a lot of teenage readers. ( )
  Olivermagnus | Aug 9, 2017 |
When Miranda first hears the warnings that a meteor is headed on a collision path with the moon, they just sound like an excuse for extra homework assignments. But her disbelief turns to fear in a split second as the entire world witnesses a lunar impact that knocks the moon closer in orbit, catastrophically altering the earth's climate. - Everything else in Miranda's life fades away as supermarkets run out of food, gas goes up to more than $10 a gallon, and school is closed indefinitely. But what Miranda and her family don't realize is that the worst is yet to come. Told in Miranda's diary entries, this is a heartpounding account of her struggle to hold on to the most important resource of all - hope - in an increasingly desperate and unfamiliar time.
  wichitafriendsschool | Jul 19, 2017 |
Showing 1-5 of 367 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors (4 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Susan Beth Pfefferprimary authorall editionscalculated
Bauer, EmilyNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Wadden, ChrisCover designersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Epigraph
Dedication
For Marci Hanners and Carol Pierpoint
First words
May 7

Lisa is pregnant.
Quotations
It was like one of those lists on the radio to let you know which schools were having snow days. Only instead of it being school districts in the area, it was whole cities, and it wasn't just snow. (24)
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Book description
No shops. No TV. No Electricity. No Daylight. No idea if your family is alive or dead. Could you survive? When a freak asteroid knocks the moon from its orbit, horrific tides engulf parts of the globe, and life on earth changes overnight. For 15-year-old Miranda, a desperate battle for her family's survival begins.
Haiku summary

Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0152061541, Paperback)

It's almost the end of Miranda's sophomore year in high school, and her journal reflects the busy life of a typical teenager: conversations with friends, fights with mom, and fervent hopes for a driver's license. When Miranda first begins hearing the reports of a meteor on a collision course with the moon, it hardly seems worth a mention in her diary. But after the meteor hits, pushing the moon off its axis and causing worldwide earthquakes, tsunamis, and volcanoes, all the things Miranda used to take for granted begin to disappear. Food and gas shortages, along with extreme weather changes, come to her small Pennsylvania town; and Miranda's voice is by turns petulant, angry, and finally resigned, as her family is forced to make tough choices while they consider their increasingly limited options. Yet even as suspicious neighbors stockpile food in anticipation of a looming winter without heat or electricity, Miranda knows that that her future is still hers to decide even if life as she knew it is over.

Veteran author Susan Beth Pfeffer, who penned the young adult classic The Year Without Michael over twenty years ago, makes a stunning comeback with this haunting book that documents one adolescent's journey from self-absorbed child to selfless young woman. Teen readers won't soon forget this intimate story of survival and its subtle message about the treasuring the things that matter most—-family, friendship, and hope.--Jennifer Hubert

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:14:40 -0400)

(see all 6 descriptions)

Through journal entries sixteen-year-old Miranda describes her family's struggle to survive after a meteor hits the moon, causing worldwide tsunamis, earthquakes, and volcanic eruptions.

» see all 2 descriptions

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