BOOK REVIEW: 'The Future of Us' an easy read for busy college students
Imagine logging onto your Facebook and seeing your profile — fifteen years in the future.
That is what happens to two teenagers, Emma and Josh, in the novel The Future of Us by Jay Asher and Carolyn Mackler.
However, the book has an added twist. It is set in 1996, eight years before Mark Zuckerberg even started Facebook.
The story begins with high school student Emma receiving a desktop computer from her father. When her neighbor Josh gives her a trial disk of AOL his parents don’t want, they find what they first believe is a prank.
What they describe as a “jumble of pictures and words” is the website over 800 million people are now accustomed to, and some cannot seem to live without.
They see a glimpse of their lives in 2011 — what they look like, who their friends are, what they are doing and even who they are married to.
This causes problems when Emma disproves of her future husband.
Emma and Josh decide to keep the find a secret, because they do not know how much destruction the knowledge could do.
The following day, Emma logs back on and finds small details of her profile have changed. A new profile picture, new statuses and different friends. The posts she had seen the day before were nowhere to be found.
That’s when Emma and Josh realized they could change their futures and sculpt perfect lives for themselves. The biggest decision they face is whether or not they should.
I really enjoyed this book, because it has never been done before. The idea was fresh and new, which made it much more intriguing.
While the end was predictable, the entire book kept me entertained. Every few chapters, they would have status updates in the text.
At one point, Josh posts a status about putting together a model solar system with his son. His friend comments about being “nostalgic for Pluto,” causing Emma and Josh to spend the rest of the day wondering what happens to Pluto, imagining a cataclysmic demise.
I really appreciated that the future was not fixed. If this had been the case, the pair probably would have slacked off in school and let their lives go by the wayside, because they already knew they would be successful or happy in fifteen years.
Instead, they are responsible for all of their actions, which made them think before they did anything. It added a lot of depth to the story.
While I know many college students do not read for entertainment due to lack of interest or time, I definitely recommend it. It was a nice break from the stress of homework. The chapters are extremely short, which made it easier to get through.