Book Review: Life As We Knew It by Susan Beth Pfeffer

Title: Life As We Knew It

Author: Susan Beth Pfeffer

Series: The Last Survivors #1

Publisher: HMH Books

Release Date: October 1, 2006


Book Summary:

Miranda’s disbelief turns to fear in a split second when a meteor knocks the moon closer to the earth. How should her family prepare for the future when worldwide tsunamis wipe out the coasts, earthquakes rock the continents, and volcanic ash blocks out the sun? As summer turns to Arctic winter, Miranda, her two brothers, and their mother retreat to the unexpected safe haven of their sunroom, where they subsist on stockpiled food and limited water in the warmth of a wood-burning stove.

Told in journal entries, this is the heart-pounding story of Miranda’s struggle to hold on to the most important resource of all–hope–in an increasingly desperate and unfamiliar world.

OMG!  This book!!!  I have been waiting for the library to actually have this book available for me FOREVER and now I’ve finally read it and… just… OMG!  I absolutely loved this book.  You know when you really get into a book and you can’t put it down, but you have to, and then once you do you don’t want to pick it up again just because you want it to last forever, but then you pick it up and then it’s all over!?!?  Well that’s how I felt with this book.  I wanted to know what happened but I didn’t want it to end – even though I knew that I would have 3 more books to read after this one.

I loved the characters!  They were realistic and heart-warming and believable!  Miranda is so strong for only being 16 years old.  Jonny, the younger brother, acts like a boy his age (14 years old) until tragedy happens and he is forced to grow up – he does so in such a realistic manner that I couldn’t help but love him and respect him.  Matt, the older brother, is forced into a co-parenthood with his mother to help hold the family together – once again a very loving and believable character.  And the mother – just love her to pieces!

While reading this story I felt like I was living with them and experiencing what they were experiencing.  There were times, and I know it’s silly, that after reading for a long period I would stop and have to remind myself that it was a different world – not mine – and it would take a couple seconds of adjustment and worry before I got a grip.  I haven’t had that kind of experience – not that I remember.  Yes I’ve loved books before, but never have I been so engrossed in the events and the realism that I was temporarily transported there to such an extent.  Pfeffer has such an amazing skill in being able to create such a realistic environment and make the reader believe it whole-heartedly.  This book made me feel so many different emotions – like I haven’t felt in a while – sadness, happiness, surprise, bafflement!

If you haven’t started this series, it is a MUST!  If you like reading I suggest you run out and read it.  It doesn’t matter if you don`t like science fiction, or if you`re sick of dystopians, or if you’re not a big fan of young adult – all that matters is you like to read!  It has been a long time since I have loved a book as much as this one and it’s on a short list of my must haves and my even shorter list of most favourites!  What are you waiting for – go, read, enjoy, you’re welcome!

Rating:  5/5 Stars- I loved it!!!

Content: some kissing, teen moving away with an older man, talks about when to have sex, under-age drinking (a glass of wine at one or two dinners),  lots of talks of death and giving up on living, death including suicide, no swearing, but there are discussions of heaven and hell.

Source: Library Copy

This book can be purchased at AmazonBarnes & Noble, and Chapters Indigo


  1. This series was recommended to me by one of the patrons at the library where I work. I really loved it too. It made me want to stockpile canned goods and warm clothing.

  2. I hadn’t heard about it, but glad you shared the information. Thanks.

  3. S. J. Pajonas (spajonas) says:

    This book gave me such anxiety and I suddenly wanted to hoard food and build a bomb shelter. Yep, it really was that good.

  4. After reading your review, I just put in a request for it at my library. I can’t wait to read it.

  5. I read this book a couple of years ago and I LOVED it! I read it in Danish and the next two isn’t translated but I really have to read all 3 of them in English instead. It was SO great!