Because there are different ways to be awesome – ‘The Rest of Us Just Live Here’

restofus-342x513Maybe it’s a book-nerd thing, but I really loved how this book both pokes fun at, and pays homage to, the mighty Chosen One trope. I loved the nuances, I loved the giggles and I even loved the confusion.

Confusion…? What are you talking about Heather? Good books don’t confuse you! Except sometimes they do…

‘The Rest of Us Just Live Here’ by Patrick Ness had me scratching my head. Thankfully not nits (can you even catch them from a book?). Perhaps not even confusion, so much as mystery. I couldn’t get a complete handle on the world. Because I had too much of a handle on the world.

When was it set? Where?

Because everything seemed to be about now and about our normal world. Except for the blue lights and the zombies and the adults that don’t remember. Are they metaphors or are they real? Are they both? And… aaaah!




There’s a lot to love in this book. I was already primed to love, because I’ve read other books by Ness and I know he’s awesome. I dug how the teeny tiny subplot is all Immortals invading and indie kids dying, and yet what held me in thrall was the pretty ordinary lives of the pretty normal teenagers. It’s clever, brilliantly written, touching and funny.

The dialogue is alive. Check this quote out, had me giggling:

“What is the limit as x approaches one of one minus x-squared over x to the fourth minus x?” I read.

“Iambic pentameter,” Mel says.

“You are?”

“Minus two-thirds,” Henna answers.

We look up to Jared. “Yep,” he says.

“It’s not iambic pentameter?” Mel says.

“You’re definitely bic pentameter,” Henna says. “In those shoes, anyway.”

“Because they look like four feet?” Mel says.

(p 180)

I mean, I sense serious tongue-in-cheek action in this book. And yet it manages to beautifully weave serious issues with these vivid and strange layers.

And it’s still making me think. This is the sort of book they should set in English Literature and see how many different levels you can read it at. I’d love to be the teacher marking those essays!

Enjoy! Even if you’re not the Chosen One. Because not everyone has to be, you know…


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