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Everything You Need to Survive the Apocalypse Hardcover – January 3, 2012
The Amazon Book Review
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"Maddeningly funny and heartbreaking. Klauss makes the end of the world feel like something to celebrate." --John M. Cusick, author of Girl Parts
"Insightful, humorous, and truthful....Already a skilled and polished writer, first-novelist Klauss offers adult and youth characters that are developed, realistic, and provocative....This book could well become the sort of came-from-nowhere, sustained hit that Stephen Chbosky's The Perks of Being a Wallflower proved to be." --Booklist, starred review
About the Author
Lucas Klauss received an MFA in writing for children from the New School, and his humor writing has been featured online at McSweeney’s and College Humor—but mostly at LucasKlauss.com. He lives in Brooklyn, New York. This is his first novel.
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The one thing that didn't work for me, at least on a first reading, was about halfway through, when Phillip first says, "I believe." Radical personal transformations are a source of great drama, and something I usually have trouble with when they occur in movies, where the compressed time frame doesn't allow them time to take place convincingly. I have no trouble imagining Phillip going to church, even maybe to the Summit, to get the girl. But it sounds as though he actually comes to believe, or thinks he does, for a while. Not that it can't happen, but it's hard for me to imagine that kind of process taking place without an agonizing amount of mental floundering and thrashing, something that would take about 500 pages in a novel. I had a similar problem with Ferret: For someone as messed up as he was portrayed to turn around on a dime was a little unreal. But the abruptness of these transformations may just be part of the fundamental message of the book, about holding one's beliefs lightly. The pressures are strong for all of us to adopt some set of beliefs and to hold them tightly (and thereafter to avoid people who hold different beliefs), no matter how poor the fit, or else to adopt the sort of flaccid broadmindedness that dismisses commitment with the idea that "everybody has an opinion." I take it as a mark of extraordinary maturity and wisdom to see beyond these alternatives, to accommodate both commitment and open-mindedness. If it would be astonishing for Philip to have managed that, at his age, it is the more so for the author. It is an impressive, Randian-type feat to have dramatized such a fundamental, rather un-Randian insight in a breezy YA novel.
His voice is strong and unique, sometimes humorous, but mostly extremely honest in a way that lets us know things about Philip's character even he doesn't know. The book is very well-written, and not in any way preachy about religion.
As teenagers - and even adults - we are all looking for something, even if we don't realize it. As this family, who obviously loves each other, struggles to heal, Philip finds so much more than he bargained for ~ and so will brave readers who aren't afraid to read something that concerns religion.
Most recent customer reviews
First Warning: This book is most definitely about the apocalypse, just not in the literal sense. And...Read more