The Rest of Us Just Live Here by Patrick Ness Book Review

The Rest of Us Just Live Here by Patrick Ness
Publisher: Walker Books
Release Date: August 27, 2015

What if you aren't the one who is supposed to fight the zombies, or soul-eating ghosts, or the vampire apocalypse? What if you are just a regular kid trying to get through high-school?

This concept has always fascinated me. In historical novels kids are always precocious and different than everyone else around them, but what about the girl who wanted to get married at seventeen or the boy who didn't mind working on his father's farm. What about in super hero movies when things are being destroyed? What about the guy who was drinking his latte and now is suddenly running for his life? What about the ghost hunters sister who can't see ghosts but worries about her sibling all the time? This is why I found the premise of this story so intriguing. Why don't we see more books about the normal average Joe or Jane who is just trying to live life? Answer: Because their stories are boring.

There is clearly something supernatural happening in the context of this story. We are given glimpses of it at each chapter opening, but the main characters are so far removed from it, that it may as well be non-existent. Even when the supernatural crosses their path, these kids are more concerned about the prom then they are about their classmates. I mean, people at their school are being killed left and right and because they are the "indy kids" (aka the ones who fight monsters) it's like they don't care. After all, no one really bothers to get to know the indy kids so it's not like they have any emotional attachment to them. Which is a problem in itself because even if you don't know someone, the death of classmates should affect you. These kids have the emotional empathy of a turnip.

What makes it worse is that there is this strange idea that only kids really believe the supernatural is happening and that when people become adults, they just pretend like what they experienced didn't happen. So that vampire apocalypse? Drugs in the water. I just didn't buy it. I get that there is supposed to be this notion that adults forget what it is like to be a kid and that adults choose to ignore what is happening that doesn't male sense, but it wouldn't be everyone.

There were some interesting characters here too, like the kid who is part demi-god and whom cats worship wherever he goes. Such an interesting character. The main character's mom is running for political office which no one really cares about but her, to the detriment of their family. And this would have been okay if there weren't some crazy weird things happening at the same time in their town. So, although I understand what the author was trying to do, I understand why author's write stories about the kids who save the day. Because an entire book about the normal ones turned out to be rather boring.