How I Live Now
Title: How I Live Now
Author: Meg Rosoff
Buy This Book: Amazon
Daisy's father and her step-mother, Davina the Diabolical, are expecting a baby - or as Daisy refers to it, devil's spawn. So Daisy has been shipped off from New York to England to live with her aunt and cousins, who she has never met. Here she meets Edmond, her fourteen year old cousin who she is quickly drawn to and falling in love with. When Aunt Penn gets trapped in Oslo and bombs go off in London leading to communications going down, Daisy and her four cousins find themselves alone on the farm. For so long it seems like their own little paradise, but the world is at war and they will not be left alone forever. When they are forced apart Daisy knows she will do whatever it takes to get back to Edmond.
I am sorry to all those people who told me that they really enjoyed this book. I did not. In fact, I would go so far as to say I actually hated this book. It angered me so much but it also bored me the hell out of me as well. I am always going to be honest in my reviews so I will try to explain why I hated this book so much without giving away any major spoilers.
I should have known, right from the very beginning, that I was going to dislike this book. From the tiny chapter one, where we are introduced to our main character Daisy. But Daisy's name is not Daisy, of course not, why would it be? Daisy's name is Elizabeth, but as it is too much of a dignified, old-fashioned name for her, she likes to go by the more plain Daisy.
It just got worse for me from there. Daisy has been sent off to England, to relatives she has never met and doesn't know, by her father. This is obviously because of the stereotypical evil step-mother that is Davina the Diabolical - it is all her fault. Even Daisy's eating disorder because she first stopped eating out of a fear that Davina would poison her food, because that is what step-mothers do.
Now in merry old England she meets her Aunt and cousins for the first time. This is where we meet her love interest Edmond. Now here's one of the major problems I had with the book and it's not the fact that they are cousins. It's the fact that Edmond is a fourteen year old boy, boy who smokes and drives and has sex. Now the thought of a fourteen year old having sex actually turns my stomach, I think if they were both fifteen it wouldn't have bothered me nearly as much. Also, the fact that he just casually drives around and smokes all the time at fourteen and his mother doesn't seem at all bothered utterly perplexed me. Edmond would be the kind of kid who, if I saw him walking down the street I would want to grab his parents and be like, what have you done?
As I've mentioned we already know that Daisy and Edmond fall in love. They are cousins, but did not grow up together as a family so I can live with the fact that they are okay with being with each other. But the fact that none of the other family seem bothered that a fourteen year old and fifteen year old who are related are having sex regularly. That to me does not seem normal. They obviously are attracted to each other and have feelings for each other but you would think at least one of the other cousins would question it. Nope, cousins doing it is apparently totally normal to all in England - Can you detect the sarcasm?
Let's get to the war side of things. I was excited for this to happen, it would shake things up and make it interesting. Oh how wrong I was. At first Daisy and her cousins aren't even bothered, yes their mother is stranded in Oslo and possibly dead but who cares when you have the whole farm to yourself. London's been bombed and you have been invaded by an unknown army but who cares you can stay up late and go swimming. What is wrong with these people?
Arrrrrrrrrrrghhhhhhhhhhhh! This book made me so angry I wanted to throw it at a wall. Nothing is explained, ever!!! Britain has shipped all it's armies off to other parts of the world, quite conveniently. This allows an unknown force from an unknown country to invade Britain in an unknown way. This leads to our characters doing, well nothing because they are not in the least bit bothered. Daisy does not feel a need to know what is going on, nor does she care. It just seemed unrealistic to me that a country would ever ship out ALL of it's armed forces somewhere else. And that a another armed forces from somewhere else can slip in and occupy the country unnoticed.
I don't even know how to put my review into any thing other then rant form. Because, that's all it did to me, made me rant about it. In my personal opinion it's an awful book. Daisy is one of the most unlikeable characters I have found in a book for a long time. She is also one of the most immature fifteen year old characters I have ever encountered. I don't want to give anything away as I don't like spoilers in reviews, so I can't explain my full hatred for this book. But this does contain a part 2, and it does not make any sense at all. This book explains absolutely nothing. Why was there a war? Nobody knows. Who invaded Britain? Never explained. How did they occupy Britain? Wouldn't you like to know, but we're not going to tell you.
I definitely would not recommend this to anyone but I just want to find someone else who read and hated this book so that we can rant about it together. I know this review is more of a rant but that's all it really deserves from me. This book stole precious hours of my life from me that I would love to get back. Urghhh awful.