[review] The Future of Us by Jay Asher and Carolyn Mackler

It’s 1996 and Emma just got the Internet. But that’s not all she got when a little site called Facebook shows up on her screen…

I listened to the audiobook of this one, and maybe because I was spoiled by The Knife of Never Letting Go I didn’t find the audiobook to be anything special. The book switches perspectives every chapter between Emma, voiced by Mary Ellen Cravens, and Josh, voiced by Steven Kaplan. This didn’t bother me, but I know some readers have issues with split narratives.

My favourite aspect of this book is probably the nostalgia element. Small things like sharing a seatbelt with a friend or disposable cameras made me miss not only the 90s but just being a kid. Getting to see the 90s clash with our current time led to both some laugh out loud moments (What the hell happens to Pluto?) and some really interesting commentary on internet use today.

I thought the description of teenagers, particularly teenagers in the 90s, was well done, but at the same time I really wish Emma had been less of a female stereotype. She was boy crazy and selfish, and yes there are teenage girls who are like that, but I don’t understand why that’s the image we need to continue to use. Even if she does mature as the story progresses.

Kind of.

Books with similar aspects

Gimme a Call by Sarah Mlynowski (thanks to Grace for the rec)

P. S. Longer Letter Later by Paula Danziger and Ann M. Martin

recommended to those who remember the 90s

not recommended to anyone under the age of 15 now, unless interested in seeing what it used to be like to be a teenager.

Don’t just take my word for it!

“My generation (the 20-something crowd) will definitely enjoy the throwbacks to our childhood games and experiences.” Angel@MermaidVisions

“It definitely raised some interesting points about the choices we make, why we make them and helped remind us that we don’t live in a vacuum.” Christa@HookedOnBooks

“Most relatable to those of us who can still remember the nineties, but a delightful read for anyone.” Jen@AlmostGrownUp

Did I miss your review? Link me and I’ll add yours! Add me on goodreads (be sure to let me know in the comments that you’ve added me) to have your reviews linked automatically.
No discussion post planned, but if you have some spoiler-filled comments you need to get off your chest, let me know and I’ll make one just for you. :)

About megtao

Student. Writer. Nerdfighter. Fights for love, justice, and awesome.
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14 Responses to [review] The Future of Us by Jay Asher and Carolyn Mackler

  1. CLG says:

    This has been in my TBR pile for quite a bit. It sounded so good, plus I LOVE Jay Asher- 13 Reasons Why was EPIC. I’ve added you on goodreads!

  2. I agree- the 90s references were AWESOME! Be it that line about Ellen DeGeneres, Oasis or Pluto being a planet!! I thought it was a sweet book and agree with you, it made me nostalgic for the 90s! I luhved the internet usage commentary as well. I found myself nodding along. Great review and I LOVE your blog name. Coffee and WIZARDS xD

  3. Agree on basically everything–the Pluto line was one of my favorites and I was laughing out loud while driving by myself. I’m sure I looked normal to other drivers. Emma really bothered me the whole time, but I think the narrator for her did well and picked up Emma’s qualities through her voice. Glad I listened to and didn’t read this one.

    • megtao says:

      It probably would have been shorter to read though. I think that’s true with most audiobooks though just because I’m a fast reader…

  4. I kind of had a similar reaction. Well at least I *think* it’s similar, because I thought the book was a little bit meh. I had thought that it would be awesome just from the description, and I wound up most enjoying things that probably won’t appeal to teenagers now as much, and that’s the flashback stuff. I thought the relationship and the characters were just ok.

  5. Yay for linking to other reviews! I love when bloggers share the lurve.

    I’ve heard mixed things on this read, and it sounds like yours is now among them. The idea sounds super rad, but there are elements of the plot or characters that are just meh.

    • megtao says:

      I’ve been wanting to do it forever, but no one was leaving me links, so I realized I needed to take the initiative myself. If you want your links added, add me on goodreads and make sure you link your reviews on your goodreads 🙂

  6. Jasmine says:

    I liked the book well enough overall, but Emma seriously drove me nuts. You can’t just go around changing whatever you want! Plus, I thought it was a little absurd that she didn’t realize for the longest time that the problem was actually her own attitude.

    • megtao says:

      Grown up Emma must have figured it out because she turned off facebook. At least, that’s what I like to believe. Kind of wish we could have seen more of adult Emma and Josh!

  7. Heidi says:

    I loved this for the 90s nostalgia too! I also said that though it was a YA book, it’s really a better read for those of us who were teens in the 90s. I agree about Emma too. I didn’t really like her at all, but I did think that she was well written, so I enjoyed the book quite a bit overall.

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