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."