ARC Review: The Here and Now by Ann Brashares


March 23, 2014 by Alice in Readerland

Here and NowAn unforgettable epic romantic thriller about a girl from the future who might be able to save the world . . . if she lets go of the one thing she’s found to hold on to.

Follow the rules. Remember what happened. Never fall in love.

This is the story of seventeen-year-old Prenna James, who immigrated to New York when she was twelve. Except 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: never reveal where they’re from, never interfere with history, and never, ever be intimate with anyone outside their community. Prenna does as she’s told, believing she can help prevent the plague that will one day ravage the earth. 

But everything changes when Prenna falls for Ethan Jarves. 

From Ann Brashares, the #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants series, The Here and Now is thrilling, exhilarating, haunting, and heartbreaking—and a must-read novel of the year.

Special thanks to the publisher, Delacorte Press, and NetGalley for giving me an ARC of this title solely in exchange for an honest review. The Here and Now by Ann Brashares will be released April 8th, 2014.

What I Liked

* The premise of this story made me grab the ARC.

* The talk about the pandemic felt terrifyingly real.

* The time travel concept was interesting.

* I  loved that Prenna was given rules. In so many stories, the lead is off on a one-girl vendetta and pretty much gets to do whatever she wants (which I also love), but I enjoyed seeing Prenna’s society and the certain regulations they had.

Rules, you say? Rules?!

* I thought that the ending was very fitting for the story.

Cynical Cindy Says

Grumpy Cat

 I really, really wanted to enjoy this book. I put it on my to-read list the second I saw the synopsis. I had the release date marked down on my calender. I was so happy when I was given an ARC of it. But in the end, this book was just something that I didn’t enjoy.  I think the writing style was the biggest culprit; it felt impersonal to me, like I couldn’t connect with the story or the characters. For a time travel/high stakes novel, I also didn’t feel much urgency in it or anything to keep pulling me into the story.

So…this obviously wasn’t the book for me. I would still recommend it if you’re a big fan of Ann Brashares, though.

I’m really curious, have you read The Here and Now? If so, what did you think of it?

21 thoughts on “ARC Review: The Here and Now by Ann Brashares

  1. I felt the same way about it – the writing style was so impersonal, and I ended up caring about very little in the story. There were some parts I could have ignored, if I was emotionally invested, but the entire time I was staring skeptically at my kindle screen. I really wish this was a better book, because so many people recommended it.

  2. melaniehays says:

    I read it awhile back and fought to get through it. It wasn’t the worst book I’ve read, but I just wasn’t that attached to the characters. I’m a fan of Brashares other work, so I was really wanting to love this.

  3. I am starting to get worried about this one, I have seen three reviews so far and two didn’t like it and one did..and I have it to review. I haven’t ever read this author before so I can’t go on trying it because I like the I guess I will cross my fingers and hope for the best. Nice review! :)

  4. Sunny says:

    I was SO back and forth on reading this. I got invited to read an ARC, but….I couldn’t do it. I was so afraid that I’d end up not liking it, or worse, DNFing it, and I just didn’t want to do that with this galley. I really love all the positives you mentioned so I WILL pick up a finished copy. It’s too bad that there was something missing for you though! That’s always frustrating for me. Great review, Alice :)

  5. Pamela D says:

    I’ve heard a lot of people saying that they didn’t enjoy this book. I did love all the cat gifs though!

  6. I haven’t read this and I’m disappointed to hear that it didn’t work out for you, but I still plan on reading this since Ann Brashares was such a favourite author of mine. Hopefully it works out better for me.

  7. Annie says:

    Writing style is really important – I’m sorry this one let you down. The synopsis does sound really interesting. I’ve seen and loved the Sisterhood movies, but never read anything by AB before…

  8. DoingDewey says:

    I’ve heard other people say similar things about the lack of urgency and it also seems that there’s too big a focus on romance for many readers. Although I love the concept too, I think I’ll be passing on this one.

  9. I read another not too positive review for this recently so now I’m pretty sure this won’t be for me. I love time travel stories but I really need to be invested in the characters. I love that you livened this up with the cat gifs though!

  10. Lucy @ Queen of Contemporary says:

    i haven’t heard of this before and I’m quite intrigued by the idea, but I don’t think I’ll be reading it. It’s sad it didn’t work for you, Alice!

    Great review!

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