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The Shade of the Moon (Life As We Knew It Series) Hardcover – August 13, 2013
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The fourth book in the Life as We Knew It series focuses on Jon, younger brother to Miranda and friend of Julie from the previous titles. It’s four years since a meteor crashed into the moon, killing billions and changing everything. Now that things have somewhat settled down, the remains of society are stratifying. Jon is in Sexton with his stepmother and baby half-brother; because of the passes they possess, life is better. Jon’s mother, Miranda, and her husband, Alex, live nearby as grubs, the worker bees whose endlessly long days of bitterly hard labor sustain the surrounding areas. And Julie? She’s dead. In fact, it’s her pass that has allowed Jon to live in Sexton, but thanks to events surrounding her death, his privileges engender considerable guilt. Then Jon learns exactly how Julie died, and everything is turned upside down once more. The pampered and weak Jon is not a particularly likable character, but in some ways that intensifies the story, as the moral choices he makes become successively more complicated. Pfeffer’s well-written take on what life might be as it returns to “normal” is sometimes brutal and always depressingly real. Grades 7-10. --Ilene Cooper
"Action-packed and completely unpredictable, this latest will be widely anticipated by the series' many fans."
"Pfeffer's well-written take on what life might be as it returns to 'normal' is sometimes brutal and always depressingly real."
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One of my favorite things about this addition to the series is Jon’s narration. Before reading this book, he was the character I felt I knew the least about. In the other books he has mainly been in the background. It was interesting to see this world from his perspective. Interesting to see him deal with the two worlds he finds himself part of. That constant uncertainty would be unnerving.
The class system that Pfeffer created is fascinating. The dehumanization of the “grubs” is a lot like what we do to the poor. Towards the end of the book, the “clavers” no longer acknowledge that the “grubbs” are human. Powerful people were spreading stories to further that ideology. Watching Jon struggle with the entitlement of living in the enclave while also being constantly reminded that he didn’t actually “belong” there was conflicting. Part of me wanted to kick his butt for being such a little jerk and not appreciating everything that everyone was doing for him. That part of me was assuaged when Jon rallies and helps his sister.
This series is a good look into a possible future and a cautionary tale to remind us all how fragile our society really is.
Want to see my full review of this title and many more? Check out my blog AlliesOpinions on Wordpress!
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Genre: YA Dystopian
Recommended Age: 16+ (sexual content, gore, violence, death, trigger warnings for suicide and infant death)
Before I start my review, I would like to say that I did enjoy the story. With that said, the only problem I really had with the story was the setting.Read more