Title: The Future of Us
Genre: Young Adult Contemporary
Release Date: November 21st, 2011
It’s 1996, and Josh and Emma have been neighbors their whole lives. They’ve been best friends almost as long – at least, up until last November, when Josh did something that changed everything. Things have been weird between them ever since, but when Josh’s family gets a free AOL CD in the mail,his mom makes him bring it over so that Emma can install it on her new computer. When they sign on, they’re automatically logged onto their Facebook pages. But Facebook hasn’t been invented yet. And they’re looking at themselves fifteen years in the future.
By refreshing their pages, they learn that making different decisions now will affect the outcome of their lives later. And as they grapple with the ups and downs of what their futures hold, they’re forced to confront what they’re doing right – and wrong – in the present
Summary from Goodreads.com
My Review: If you follow my reviews then you know that contemporary is not really my thing. I have said it before, but my life is contemporary. So I want my books to be fantastical and take me somewhere completely different. So then why am I reviewing a contemporary book today? That would be the fault of Susan from Wastepaper Prose. The two of us were driving to a conference and she said she was going to put in an audiobook. I love listening to them, so I was game. I asked her which one and she said Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher (review here). She said it was a contemporary and that I would thank her later. I inwardly (and probably outwardly too) cringed and braced myself for the book. I can say now though that Susan was 100% right, Thirteen Reasons Why was amazing! I don’t know how he did it, but Jay Asher captured all of my attention and I was the one begging Susan to put the book back on after we would take breaks, just so I could hear what happened. My point to this little story is that I will read pretty much anything Jay Asher writes from now on. So, when I saw there was a book coming out that he co-wrote I knew I had to read it.
The Future of Us, is a story about two friends, Josh and Emma. They live next door to one another and have been best friends for a long time. They had a recent falling out, but start to weave back into each other’s lives more when Emma gets a new computer. One day, Josh brings an AOL CD-ROM to Emma and when she signs on she discovers her Facebook page. Now this is 1996, Facebook has not been invented yet, so neither of them knows what it means exactly. However, when they start exploring, they realize this page tells them about what they are doing fifteen years in the future!
Emma is the more uptight of the two and does not like the future she sees for herself. She is constantly trying to do things in the present to change how she ends up in the future, but winds up never being happy with the outcome. Josh was more laid back and found out his future looked pretty good. He doesn’t want Emma meddling with everything and screwing it up for him. The two of them are beyond cute together, I kept rooting for Emma to wake up and realize how great Josh really was! Sometimes it is hardest for us to see the wonderful things are right in front of us, and Emma is a perfect example of this.
This book has also made me look at Facebook in a whole new light. Imagine it is 1996 and I stumble across Facebook, what would I think? I was a freshman in high school in 1996, so I would have been about the same age as Josh and Emma. Would I have liked what I saw? I know I am happy now, but what if I saw before how things would have turned out, would I have changed anything? This book just made me think about how might have handled this situation. The idea of discovering your future opens up a whole world of possibilities; would it be a good thing or a bad thing? That is the question that Josh and Emma explored in this book.
I am a huge fan of getting to see the main female and male protagonists’ point of view. We got that in Thirteen Reasons Why and now again with The Future of Us. Something about that style of writing always draws me in more. I think it is mostly because guys and girls think differently, if you ask them both to tell the same story, you will get two different versions and I like exploring both of them. I also like that since I listened to this book, I got to hear Emma read by a female and Josh by a male. Sometimes they have one person do both parts, but not with this book. It was a great way to differentiate between the chapters and I enjoyed knowing at all times whose eyes I was seeing the story from. Typing this now I can still clearly hear both of the voices running through my head. I don’t think this book will leave me for a long time. Kinda like how Thirteen Reason Why is still with me. These books are hard to forget.
I can’t finish this review without mentioning some of the awesome references in it. It was the year I entered high school, so all of the pop culture acknowledgments that made it into this book were things I could easily relate to and had me laughing out loud. My favorite show for example, Friends, makes an appearance, as well as my first CD, the Green Day Dookie album, and a Discman! Do you remember those things? I remember when I got my first one, it was one hundred dollars and it skipped when I ran with it. Little details like this just made the book that much more enjoyable for me.
Overall, this was a fantastic book. I actually found myself driving the long way home every day, just so I could hear more from this story. If you grew up around this time, then this book would be perfect for you. If will take you back to when you were this age and make you wonder how you might handle the situation Josh and Emma found themselves in.