Friday, February 3, 2012

FRIDAY: The Future of Us by Jay Asher and Carolyn Mackler

[1996] Josh and Emma used to be best friends. But Emma rejected Josh when he thought they were becoming more than friends, and they started pulling away from one another. When Emma uploads an AOL disc from Josh's mom on her new computer, she finds a strange file called "Facebook." Clicking on it takes her to a weird-looking internet page where there are pictures and notes about a woman with Emma's name and birthday - Emma, 15 years in the future. She calls Josh, and Facebook becomes their secret. They peek into their futures. Josh finds that he is married to the hottest girl at school. Emma's married, too, but she starts to wonder if her older self is really happy with her future. How far will Emma in 1996 go to tweak her life to build a future Facebook page she likes? And how might she change Josh's future in the process?

What a fantastic premise! So clever! Emma and Josh are well-developed characters. Their family dynamics as well as the tensions between the two characters are so realistically done. Supporting characters are great, too, but Emma's desperation to build a happy future is the core of the story.

4 out of 5 stars

Recommended for: older teens (9th grade+), young adults, and adults who were teens in the 80s and 90s.

Cautions: language, mature relationship issues

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