April 24, 2014

The Here and Now by Ann Brashares

Posted in Uncategorized tagged , , , at 1:23 am by suebe2

The Here and Now
by Ann Brashares
Random House

Prenna lives a life of rules — who she can speak to, what they can talk about, and how she must behave.  She tries not to complain about because its much, much better than the home she left behind, riddled with plagues and pollution.  A mosquito bite is a death sentence.  Then again, now that she’s left home behind, complaining or making waves of any kind is a death sentence.

Prenna doesn’t come from a different place. She comes from a different time and slipping up in any way could alert time natives to the presence of her and her people.

She tries to keep her interactions with time natives casual but there’s something about Ethan that makes her want to talk to him and to trust him.  She knows he’s really good in physics, but he always finds an excuse to ask for her help.  And she can’t say no.  Wouldn’t that look odd to her teachers? After all, she’s supposed to try to fit in even though she doesn’t know the card games that everyone plays and slips up in lots of little ways.  But Ethan always makes excuses for her and helps her in little ways, even teaching her to play cards.

Then he tells her about the day, years ago, that he went fishing by himself.  The air above the creek began to shimmer and out of this distortion stepped a girl — a girl who now calls herself Prenna.  Prenna doesn’t remember this, but she still has the sweatshirt that someone gave her that day.

Ethan has known about her all along yet he’s never used this knowledge to hurt her.  When they discover a hidden cache of future newspapers, Prenna reads an obituary that numbs her through and through.  How can she keep Ethan alive and discover all the lies and does it really matter if the cost is Ethan’s life.

Time travel is hard to do well but Brashares has created a well-thoughtout means of travel with a set of rules that all travelers must follow lest they wreak havoc on the present and, through it, the future.  Prenna is a passionate characters young readers will want to know better as she struggles with the same things that readers struggle with every day — figuring out who she is, why she’s here and what is really going on.

This book hooked me and prompted me to read on in spite of the many things on my to-do list.

–SueBE

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