20 December 2011

ARC YA Book Review: Catastrophic History of You and Me by Jess Rothenberg

Release Date: 21 February 2012
Publisher: Dial (Penguin)
Format: ARC
Source: Around the World ARC Tours

Goodreads description:
Dying of a broken heart is just the beginning.... Welcome to forever.

BRIE'S LIFE ENDS AT SIXTEEN: Her boyfriend tells her he doesn't love her, and the news breaks her heart—literally.

But now that she's D&G (dead and gone), Brie is about to discover that love is way more complicated than she ever imagined. Back in Half Moon Bay, her family has begun to unravel. Her best friend has been keeping a secret about Jacob, the boy she loved and lost—and the truth behind his shattering betrayal. And then there's Patrick, Brie's mysterious new guide and resident Lost Soul . . . who just might hold the key to her forever after.

With Patrick's help, Brie will have to pass through the five stages of grief before she's ready to move on. But how do you begin again, when your heart is still in pieces?
My Thoughts...

The Catastrophic History of You & Me falls into a weird "in between" area for me where everything feels like reading a contemporary but it's SO not because, hello, the main character is dead.  What I'm learning is that I LIKE this type of this.  If you're going to get me to read something that feels contemporary, throw in a ghost or two and I am SO THERE.  (Oh, and apparently Wikipedia would call this "supernatural fiction"--do you agree?) Okay, so moving right along, I really, REALLY enjoyed this book and I definitely think that it's something that you MUST add to your reading list for next year (or now if you have an ARC!).
Love's super sneaky like that. It creeps up the second you turn your head to check how cute your butt looks in that new pair of jeans.
-p2, ARC
Brie is the type of character that I felt an instant bond with.  Her voice is authentic, friendly, and realistic with just a twinge of sarcasm that'll get me every time. I loved watching her develop throughout the story as she comes to terms with what happened to her and what is/was going on with the loved ones that she left behind.  It felt like a very realistic portrayal of something that we (obviously) can never really understand.  What really goes on after we die?  No matter what you personally believe, I think that Ms. Rotherberg has done a wonderful job giving readers a realistic look at what *could* happen through Brie's experiences.
That's right. Falling in love is pretty much the same thing as being eaten alive by a grizzly bear.
-p3, ARC
Patrick is a really interesting side character.  When he first appeared in the story, I had an *inkling* that he would probably be the love interest, but it wasn't at all the "OMG I love you even though I don't know you at all" that I was kind of expecting.  Patrick and Brie develop a real friendship over time and he never pushes her.  What we learn about him for the majority of the novel is largely about his personality--not his history/background.  When that starts to come to light later on, it's like an explosion of understanding and realizations all at once.

This book is really a phenomenal read that I absolutely flew through.  I was immediately hooked by the authentic voice of the MC, which was totally confirmed when I teared up on page TWELVE. The things that happen towards the end threw me for a complete loop (in a good way).  The characters were fun to get to know and watch learn and develop.  The story is one that keeps you sucked in from beginning to end with its mysteries and twists and turns throughout.  There is so much going on that you can't help but hope and pray that it will all work out okay but wonder if that's really possible.  There were points when I wasn't even 100% sure WHAT I wanted in the ending, but what Ms. Rothenberg does--it's perfect.

I definitely hope that you'll put this one on your list of not to miss debuts for 2012!


Alexandralanc said...

Looks like a cute, thoughtful book. I will definitely add to my TBR list! :)

Thanks for the great review!


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mayceegreene said...

This book sounds so interesting-- from the way she dies to the the five stages of grief. It sounds like an great read.
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