I received a copy of The Here and Now from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
Title: The Here and Now
Author: Ann Brashares
Publication Date: January 1, 2015
Thrilling, exhilarating, haunting and heartbreaking, The Here and Now is a twenty-first-century take of an impossible romance.
There are rules.
Never reveal where you’re from. Never be intimate with anyone outside the community. And never interfere with history.
Seventeen-year-old Prenna James emigrated to New York when she was twelve. But Prenna didn’t come from a different country, she came from a different time – a future where a mosquito-borne illness has mutated into a pandemic, killing millions and leaving the world in ruins.
Prenna and the others who escaped to the present day must follow a strict set of rules. Prenna does as she’s told, believing she can help prevent the plague that will one day ravage the earth and take the lives of her younger brothers. But everything changes when she falls for Ethan.
She might be able to save the world … if she lets go of the one thing she’s found to hold on to.
Our planet’s future is not secure, in fact it is in great danger. Because of climate changes that raise the water levels around the world mosquitoes have become a menace to mankind. They carry blood plague and humanity will eventually die off from this pesky insect overpopulation. People hide in dark homes, sleep under netting and spray toxic fumes around them in an effort to avoid being bit by these miniscule carriers of death.
But nothing can stop the coming destruction. Then.
Time travelers are sent back in time to assimilate into today’s world. To escape the future and presumably to stop what is in our future from becoming reality. Or not.
There are rules for our time travelers. Strict rules that when disobeyed… well, people tend to die shortly after breaking them. In perfectly natural conditions, of course. Or so it would seem to anyone outside of the closed community.
Prenna and Ethan are teenagers, in the same school and friendly. Ethan has known Prenna longer than she knows at first – but he is her champion, often explaining things that she should know, teaching her ways to fit in with society and eventually bring her to a homeless man who will play a large part in her life and in everyone else’s as well.
Prenna must make a choice to interfere with the history that is or the history that could be. Doing so could be the most difficult decision of her life.
I really enjoyed Prenna and Ethan’s story. Putting time travel along with world destruction makes a very interesting and compelling story.
I have a pretty good imagination and I could, often, put myself in a person’s place who came from a very different future and look at the world with both fear and wonderment. But mostly fear. Afraid to do the wrong thing at the wrong time to completely change history. Change one thing here, another thing changes over there where you can’t see.
But at some point Prenna comes to no longer trust the closed community of time travelers. I was so glad to see that point come to her.
The teenage romance of Prenna and Ethan was presented very believably. Overall, I enjoyed this novel very much.
I’m hoping for another book. Time will tell.