We All Looked Up by Tommy Wallach
Four high school seniors put their hopes, hearts, and humanity on the line as an asteroid hurtles toward Earth in this contemporary novel.Publishes in US: March 24th 2015 by Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers
They always say that high school is the best time of your life.
Peter, the star basketball player at his school, is worried “they” might actually be right. Meanwhile Eliza can’t wait to escape Seattle—and her reputation—and perfect-on-paper Anita wonders if admission to Princeton is worth the price of abandoning her real dreams. Andy, for his part, doesn’t understand all the fuss about college and career—the future can wait.
Or can it? Because it turns out the future is hurtling through space with the potential to wipe out life on Earth. As these four seniors—along with the rest of the planet—wait to see what damage an asteroid will cause, they must abandon all thoughts of the future and decide how they’re going to spend what remains of the present.
Genre: ya contemp
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I wanted to read We All Looked Up because the idea of the teens really evaluating their life, what they are doing with it, and if they are happy about the direction in the face of a comet that might collide with the earth.
The characters are pretty varied. Peter is a jock who is also pretty smart, but his history teacher was asking questions about success and failure that really started his evaluating his life goals. Eliza from one incident of kissing Peter while he had a girlfriend and being caught, she has earned the reputation of a slut. She kind of embraces it, even though she hadn't been with guys before it felt like the whole school turned against her. She found out her dad had terminal cancer and then she started sleeping with random guys at an all ages club. She feels like life is just suffering on top of more suffering, and it has jaded her.
Andy is a slacker type, skate boards, smokes pot, absent from school a lot. His best friend BoBo is the ring leader and because of a big breach of trust in their friendship takes advantage of Andy now. Andy is connected to Peter through Bobo dating Peter's goth little sister Misery. He also has had a long time crush on Eliza, even before her "slut" time period. Anita is the fourth character, and she is under a lot of pressure from her Dad for her grades and her future. She feels like he views her as an investment and she doesn't want to disappoint him. But she dreams of being a singer, but that conflicts so much with his Ivy League plan for her. She sees Andy outside guidance one day and she was crying and he told her that whatever it was wasn't worth it, and that has stuck in her mind.
Ardor, the asteroid, is also another connection with them all. They all notice it when it appears as a blue star in the sky, and their lives becomes even more intertwined as the news of the possibility of hitting earth becomes more and more real, and larger a possibility. Anita goes after Andy and the lyrics and softer music that he's written but doesn't normally play because Bobo is more of a screamer. While Eliza takes her photography to the next level, snapping pictures at school and around town of the changes. The thieves and drug dealers are coming above ground, homicide is up, so the police presence has been elevated. She also gets pictures of kids from her school banding together, of Peter, who is trying to make more of a difference volunteering.
I was pretty satisfied by the way it ended although was sad at some of the losses. A few of the characters realized their dreams and goals while others were left with regrets and what if weighing heavily on their minds.
I have read other books with the similar theme of days to live and end of the world approaching. This one was unique in that it also highlighted the decline in society and morals in time before. Yes there was a lot of unity towards the very last days but there were also really dark moments, showing the bad side of characters and others in society. I guess things like this will bring out the extremes.
My question to you, my lovely readers:
What would you change now or have changed in high school if you thought world might end