Title: The Future of Us
Author: Jay Asher & Carolyn Mackler
Release Date: November 21, 2011
Release Date: November 21, 2011
Source: From Publisher
It's 1996, and Josh and Emma have been neighbors their whole lives. They've been best friends almost as long--up until last November, when everything change. Things have been awkward ever since, but when Josh's family gets an American Online CD-ROM in the mail, his mom makes him bring it over so Emma can install it on her new computer. When they sign on, they're automatically logged onto Facebook...but Facebook hasn't been invented yet. Josh and Emma are looking at their profiles fifteen years in the future. Their spouses, careers, homes, and status updates--it's all there. But it's not what they expected. And every time they refresh their pages, their futures change. As they grapple with the ups and downs of what their lives hold, they're forced to confront what they're doing right—and wrong—in the present.
As soon as I heard the premise of The Future of Us, I knew it was a book I wanted to read. I mean it's about two teenagers seeing the future through Facebook. It just sounded like it would be a really great read. If the fact that I read it all in one sitting is anything to go by, it really was as great as it promised to be.
Josh and Emma have been best friends and neighbors for as long as they both can remember. But last November something happened that caused them to grow apart. They're still friends but they just aren't as close as they one were. That's until Josh's family received an AOL CD-ROM and his mom asks him to bring it over to Emma since she just got a new computer. When Emma first logs in, everything appears to be normal, but then she it asked to enter her e-mail and password a second time and finds herself on a website called Facebook. Except that this is 1996 and Facebook hasn't been invented yet. Now Josh and Emma can see their lives fifteen years into the future. Soon they realize that every decision they make in the present affects the future and soon enough they find themselves becoming addicted to the mysterious website.
I absolutely adored this book, it was simply the perfect read. I mean how ingenuous was it to write a book where people can see their future through Facebook of all things. It was a really great concept, though at first I had my doubts as to how it would all work out. In the end it worked out perfectly, even surprising me how everything really fit together. I also really loved the writing. I've read some of Carolyn Mackler's other books in the past, but it was my first time reading something by Jay Asher. Let me just say that I loved it. The writing was flawless, I couldn't tell where one author's writing ended and the other one began. Though the best part of the book had to be all the references to 90s culture. I may have been relatively young at the time but I still remember a lot.
Emma and Josh were fantastic characters, both felt incredibly real. I found myself relating to both of them at different times and more than anything they made the story for me. But they weren't perfect and that's what I really loved about them. Emma more than Josh, I could really relate to. Like Emma, I was a track runner, but more importantly, I could really relate to how quickly she became addicted to Facebook (not that this is something I'm necessarily proud to admit). Though I didn't like as much how obsessed she became with changing her future without really know much about it. While I didn't relate to him quite as much, I still really enjoyed getting to know Josh and at times I felt really bad about his situation with Emma. But mostly I loved the parts of the story that were told from his point of view, because there just aren't enough male narrators in YA. Mostly, I think that with characters other than Emma and Josh the story wouldn't have been the same.
The Future of Us was an absolutely fantastic read. I enjoyed every page and it really put into perspective the amount of time I spend on Facebook. On the surface it may appear to be a light read, but it's one that needs to be out there if only to help people realize how dependent we have become on technology for almost everything in our lives. This is a book that definitely deserves all the praise it has been getting.