The Here and Now by Ann Brashares
Published by Delacorte Press 4/8/2014
Full Disclosure – I loved the Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants series, but I was a little concerned about Ms Brashares writing a novel with a time-traveling heroine. Luckily for me and all her fans out there, my concerns were baseless. Prenna, the heroine, is part of a group that has traveled from the future in order to escape their world devastated by plague. Ostensibly, they have come for a better life and to prevent the plague, yet nothing has been done. Instead, the group has created their very own little dystopian society filled with rules, where one slip up could end in death decreed by the powers that be. The story starts off with the calming pace of a river and the air flowing around it, but ends with the reader holding their breath. Ms. Brashares’ evocative words pull the reader in to the horrors of the plague and their society, the beauty of the river as well as the uncertainty of Prenna’s relationship with James. The science fiction aspect of the story is credible and is expertly woven into the reality of today. She has even woven in devastating possibilities that climate change could cause. There were a few places of disconnect, but all and all a well written story that I will recommend her fans as well as to those who have not yet met her.