How I Live Now by Meg Rosoff

How I Live Now by Meg Rosoff (unabridged audiobook read by Kim Mai Guest; 5 hours on 4 discs): Rebellious American teenager Daisy is sent to England to live with her aunt and cousins, and a somewhat nebulous world war breaks out soon thereafter. It felt a bit like the author was wondering what would happen if World War II broke out today, except without actually picking specific countries to go to war with. Of course, the enemy’s identity isn’t all that important, since Daisy is the narrator and has little interest in politics anyway. The story is told well, with some horrific scenes, some sad scenes, and some happy scenes, and all in all I found it a perfectly believable representation of how such a person would deal with such a situation. I was somewhat confused by the weird psychic powers held by some of the characters, if only because everything else in the tale was completely realistic. In short, I’m having difficulty summing up my feelings about this book. It was almost equal parts trivial and serious, narrated by a character with whom I only somewhat sympathized. I’m glad to have read this, but I’m not sure I’d necessarily recommend it to anyone else. If I were to recommend it at all, I’d definitely go with the audio version, as I believe the punctuation issues in the print would drive me absolutely bats.

A note on the audio: Guest was quite good as the narrator, but it was a little strange that none of the English characters had English accents. Even so, she managed to make Daisy both believable and listenable as a pretty typical American teenager – no small task, that.

Also posted on BookCrossing.

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