Author: Patrick Ness
Publisher: Walker Books
Rating: 3/5 Stars
Hardcover, 343 Pages
Published August 2015
Summary: What if you aren’t the Chosen One? The one who’s supposed to fight the zombies, or the soul-eating ghosts, or whatever the heck this new thing is, with the blue lights and the death? What if you’re like Mikey? Who just wants to graduate and go to prom and maybe finally work up the courage to ask Henna out before someone goes and blows up the high school. Again. Because sometimes there are problems bigger than this week’s end of the world, and sometimes you just have to find the extraordinary in your ordinary life. Even if your best friend is worshipped by mountain lions.
I read this book a few weeks ago, and let me just say, I thought this idea was genius. It was something I'd never read before, a concept I never even considered -- when I'm reading books about characters that are the prophets, the chosen ones, the ones who save the world, what about everyone else in that story? All of the "regular" people? What are their lives like while all of this stuff is happening around them? It's an interesting concept, and not one I've seen explored before, which made the story that much more entertaining.
I personally found the narrator, Mikey, to be hysterical. He was sarcastic and witty, and it was interesting because normally I find it harder to get into the head of the male narrators. (Being that I'm a girl and all, sometimes it's hard to relate.) But I related to Mikey and his crappy luck with the universe very well, and he made several witty comments throughout the book that got an actual laugh out of me.
However, there were a few things about this book that I wasn't so crazy about, which kept me from giving it a higher rating. I felt that the story had no set plot, and it wasn't really going anywhere. Looking back on it, I couldn't really tell if there was any real purpose or plot to the story other than all of them graduating high school and living alongside those who save the world.
Also, what was going on with Henna? That girl could just not make up her damn mind. One minute, she was all in love with Nathan, then didn't like him, and then Mikey, and then didn't like him, and suggested maybe they were meant to be, and then they weren't, and so on. Like girl, you need to sit down and map out your life and get some things straight before you keep breaking hearts and being indecisive with everything you do.
I felt that the book felt weird and a bit off, but I liked it. It was a little strange, set in a middle of nowhere town with a bunch of regular people alongside some weird supernatural stuff happening. It definitely made for a good story.
The only other thing that I didn't like was that I was left with too many questions at the end. What happens to Jared? Mikey? His family? Henna? The entire world? How does school treat everyone -- do they go to school? Does their father seek help? What the heck was going on? A very good book will tend to leave the reader with a few pressing questions, but nothing too important (unless it's left off on a cliffhanger, of course, but this was a standalone novel from what I've gathered and the way everything was wrapped up). This book left me with way too many and left me feeling a little unsatisfied as a reader.
All in all, The Rest of Us Just Live Here was an interesting story that I found funny and highly entertaining. It explores a whole new concept that, as a reader, I'm certain you'll find fascinating and enjoy. If you're looking for a light, humorous read, I definitely recommend this book -- and I'm looking forward to reading more from Patrick Ness! :-)