Thursday, October 4, 2012

The Catastrophic History of You and Me by Jess Rothenberg

The Catastrophic History of You and Me by Jess Rothenberg

Publisher: Penguin
Release: February 21, 2012
Source: Library
Dying of a broken heart is just the beginning.... Welcome to forever.

BRIE'S LIFE ENDS AT SIXTEEN: Her boyfriend tells her he doesn't love her, and the news breaks her heart—literally.

But now that she's D&G (dead and gone), Brie is about to discover that love is way more complicated than she ever imagined. Back in Half Moon Bay, her family has begun to unravel. Her best friend has been keeping a secret about Jacob, the boy she loved and lost—and the truth behind his shattering betrayal. And then there's Patrick, Brie's mysterious new guide and resident Lost Soul . . . who just might hold the key to her forever after.

With Patrick's help, Brie will have to pass through the five stages of grief before she's ready to move on. But how do you begin again, when your heart is still in pieces
The Catastrophic History of You and Me is at times fun and funny, and at other times intensely emotional. Best of all, it has a unique, original plot that kept me constantly intrigued. Overall, I enjoyed this book and I wanted to say that before getting into the things I didn't like so much.

As interesting as the setting was, there were times when I didn't understand it at all. After her heart split in half, Brie was whisked off to a celestial version of her favorite pizza parlor back home. There were a handful of people there and, other than the few with whom Brie interacted, I wasn't sure exactly what their point was. Of all the dead people in the world, why were they there rather than someone else? And where were all the other D&Gs?

Another thing that completely perplexed me was all the different parallel universes Brie visited, and how no satisfactory explanation was given as to how she got there. It seemed like one moment she was in one place and in the next moment she was in another. This aspect of the book was not believable at all and it simply frustrated me.

To top it all off, Brie as a character didn't sit right with me. For most of the book, she was immature, vengeful, and flat-out annoying and her voice read more like an eight-year-old's than a fifteen-year-old's. Although she grew up a bit by the end, I found her to be one of the most vexing girls I have read about in a long time.

I know this sounds like a completely negative review, but that's definitely not what I wanted. There were a lot of things I liked and a lot of things I disliked; the negatives were just more defined and easy to write about and the positives were more of an all-encompassing "this was a creative, funny novel that I enjoyed." The Catastrophic History of You and Me contains a wonderful idea for a book and, while the execution could have been better, it was a very good story.


  1. I read a review of this book like two days ago. I heard too that it could be confusing. Something about the different places she was at at times. I guess it was the parallel universe you are talking about. I do not remember the other review mentioning Brie's character being so... childish which is sad because the book has potential.
    She’s Got Books on Her Mind

  2. I read this book and I completely agree with everything you said. Overall I enjoyed the book but Brie was rather annoying for most of it and I really wanted to know more about the other dead people. Great review!

  3. I had a hard time understanding it all too and while I was ready to slap Brie a couple times, I really liked this book. I made a review of it also :) But I agree, it could've been better. The thing it has going for it, is that it's so UNIQUE.


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