Summary and book reviews of Life As We Knew It by Susan Beth Pfeffer

Life As We Knew It

By Susan Beth Pfeffer

Life As We Knew It
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  • Hardcover: Oct 2006,
    352 pages.
    Paperback: May 2008,
    360 pages.

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Book 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.

one

May 7

Lisa is pregnant.

Dad called around 11 o’clock to let us know. Only Mom had already taken Jonny to his baseball practice and of course Matt isn’t home from college yet, so I was alone to get the big news.

“The baby is due in December,” Dad crowed, like he was the first guy in the history of the world with a younger second wife about to have a baby. “Isn’t that great! You’re going to have a little brother or sister. Of course it’s too soon to tell what it’s going to be, but as soon as we know, we’ll tell you. I wouldn’t mind another daughter myself. The first one I had turned out so wonderfully. How’d you like a baby sister?”

I had no idea. “When did you find out?” I asked.

“Yesterday afternoon,” Dad said. “I would have called you right away but, well, we celebrated. You can understand that, can’t you, honey? A little private time for Lisa...

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Reviews

BookBrowse

Miranda's diary entries record her changing viewpoint as her perspective shifts from self-centered adolescent angst, through anger and petulance, to eventual resignation in this challenging coming-of-age novel that has drawn comparisons to Meg Rosoff's How I Live Now and The Diary of Anne Frank. Recommended for teens aged 13+.   (Reviewed by BookBrowse Review Team).

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Media Reviews
Kirkus

Plausible science fiction with a frighteningly realistic reminder of recent tragedies here and abroad.

Booklist - Ilene Cooper

Starred Review. Each page is filled with events both wearying and terrifying and infused with honest emotions. Pfeffer brings cataclysmic tragedy very close.

Children's Literature

This novel goes far beyond the expectations of a sci-fi novel, and the reader will not be disappointed in the ending.

VOYA

..the plot is plausible and appealing to readers who may not usually explore the genre, especially middle grade females.

School Library Journal - John Peters

Grade 6-8. The author provides a glimmer of hope at the end, but readers will still be left stunned and thoughtful.

Reader Reviews
Mommadoo2018

major inaccuracy
As I read the book Life As We Knew It, I kept wondering how Miranda and her family managed to have water. Then it was stated that they were on a well. I live in the country and have well water, and I can tell you EMPHATICALLY that if there is no ...   Read More

Katniss Everdeen

Terrible Book
I found that this book had no real climax and the thoughts were very scattered, it was hard to relate to the main character and it was very boring. If you want to read a good piece of literature, read The Hunger Games series, this book is not worth ...   Read More

Mom of 2

Still making me think
I read this book 6 months ago and I still think about it often. It was a very exciting book and really made me wonder if I have what it takes to survive a tragedy such as this. I wish more middle schools would have the kids read this. There are ...   Read More

Raven Solis

Best Book Ever
A fiction book with realistic events. Full of drama and suspense and some humor. I couldn't book the book down even if I wanted to eat. An amazing book

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Beyond the Book

Susan Beth Pfeffer was born in New York City in 1948. She grew up in the city and its nearby suburbs and spent summers in the Catskill Mountains. When she was six her father wrote and published a book on constitutional law, and Pfeffer decided that she, too, wanted to be a writer. That year she wrote her first story, about the love between an Oreo cookie and a pair of scissors. However, it wasn't until 1970 that her first book, Just Morgan, was published. She wrote it during her last semester at New York ...

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