Sunday 15 January 2012

15. The Future of Us by Jay Asher and Carolyn Mackler

The Future of Us by Jay Asher and Carolyn Mackler
Published January 2012 by Simon and Schuster

From the publisher:

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.

I should probably state for the record that I have an on and off again relationship with Facebook.  I find most of in incredibly mundane, but I do find myself sucked in, wasting hours looking up people I haven't seen for 15 years, and don't particularly want to in the real world, but I can't help myself.  So imagine you could login to Facebook and see yourself and your friends in 15 years.

That's freaky enough, but the imagine, that every change (even changing your comfort food from macaroni cheese to lasagne) you made in the present day changes your profile 15 years in the future!  This is what Emma and Josh find, and when Emma doesn't like what she sees, she makes changes that turn her from a happily married woman, to an unhappily married one, then to a marine biologist, who becomes an unhappily married with children marine biologist...and so on.  Josh on the other hand is very happy with his future life, and he makes a start on it right away, only to find that the dream life of his future may not be the dream he wants afterall.

I really liked this book, it's a different sort of time slip novel, where the characters don't physically go anywhere, but can still see the future.  It's a look at life when the internet was born, mobile phones were rare, and people still bought CDs, and if you were waiting for that boy/girl to call you had to wait by the phone.  I doesn't make you panic and think Oh My God everything I do today will affect my future (even though in some ways I guess it does), it makes you think that you just have to live your life and do what makes you happy now...the rest will just...happen.

Who will like this book: Girls Age 15+ (some sexual references)
Read it if you like: The movie: Sliding Doors


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