How I Live Now by Meg Rosoff
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
“I noticed that once you realize someone’s watching you
it’s pretty hard not to find yourself
watching them back.”
— Meg Rosoff, How I Live Now
I first heard about this story after hearing a review on BBC Radio 1 about the film adaptation of the story. I have yet to see the film, but after reading the book, it’s definitely on my “To Watch List.”
But back to the novel. Will we ever be able to give half stars, because here’s another book I would like to give 3.5 stars to. It’s better than “average”, but not quite a 4 according to the TL rating scale. 🙂
I truly liked this little book. It was unconventional in more than one way, yet approachable, if that makes sense. The romance angle between cousins was definitely unconventional. As was the author’s style choice not to use quotations to indicate when someone was speaking and the crazy long, run on sentences. It definitely took me awhile to get used to the style, and honestly, I found it detracted from the story at first.
Aside from the style, the story itself was engaging, interesting and most of all, thought provoking. Daisy and the cousins were well rounded characters and all relatable in some way. The war component of the story (who were the bad guys, what they wanted, etc.) was never fully revealed until the end, which at times I found frustrating. Yet after reflecting on the story, I think that’s okay because through the eyes of a 15 year-old, the war probably wouldn’t have been fully understood. The love story between Daisy and Edmund — well — let’s just say, it was totally plausible given the situation.
The prose is poetic and has a lyrical feel to it. I haven’t read much magical realism, but I almost think this story could fall into that genre. If you like literary novels, coupled with dystopian stories or stories where you have to route for an unlikely hero/heroine – you may like this little 194 page book.