I cannot think of a better time to review this book! #SnowedOutAtlanta has me home bound. If you’ve been under a rock, you might not know that Mother Nature delivered a whoop-butt to the Southeast in the form of snow and ice. The intersection of this life event and the book Life As We Knew It by Susan Beth Pfeffer left me with some very realistic dreams of rationing food and hoarding water! Thankfully, I left work at the first sight of snow flakes and made it home safely. For a brief moment I felt sheepish the Northerner running with my tail between my legs at the first sign of snow. But as I passed extreme weather tracker trucks and watched the news coverage on 11 Alive, I quickly became relieved. So on with the review:
Life As We Knew It starts with a huge astronomical event. An asteroid is going to crash into the moon. This is proceeded with huge celebrations and wonder. People gather to watch the impact and see the asteroid break apart like nature’s fireworks. Unfortunately, scientists have miscalculated the mass of the asteroid. Instead of breaking apart, it knocks the moon closer to the Earth like a giant pool cue ball.
The protagonist is a teen girl named Miranda. In diary form, we follow her families experience. Thank the heavens, she has a smart mother! Her mother has the forethought to prepare in ways many other families do not. Chaos and desperation creep into the town. Through this experience, we watch Miranda mature and changes in her family dynamic. These changes are brought about in a life lessons crash course which allows us to see the development in 337 pages. But they are changes that all families must go through. This universal theme creates a wonderful read for families as a unit.
I greatly enjoyed the book. The only criticism of the book that I have read is that it is structured as a diary of a teen girl. The content and story line seems to be universally enjoyed, only the delivery of this. I have to respectfully disagree. The following of this story through her eyes, in her words, is the best way to see her internal struggles and perspective. This creates the power of sharing this story with your teen girl.
Now on to the recipe -In the book, there is an incident. It’s not a major incident but it might be a pivotal moment. It involves a bag of chocolate. I will say no more. Enjoy:
Chocolate Cheesecake Bars
3 8oz packages of cream cheese, softened
1/2 c sugar
1 t vanilla extract
2 16.5 oz packages of chocolate chip cookie dough
Preheat oven to 350° Whip together cream cheese, eggs, sugar, and vanilla. Set aside.
Crumble one tube of cookie dough into the bottom of the pan and push flat.
Top with cream cheese mixture.
Crumble remaining tube of cookie dough over the top of cream cheese mixture. Try to make the crumbles small so as to truly cover most of the cream cheese.
Bake for 45 – 60 minutes. Cookies will be browned and cream cheese set. Cool before cutting.