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

Title: The Rest of Us Just Live Here

Author: Patrick Ness

Release Date:  August 27th 2015

Source: Gift – Book Nerd Addicts

Genre: Fantasy, YA


What if you aren’t the Chosen One?
The one who’s supposed to fight the zombies, or the soul-eating ghosts, or whatever the heck this new thing is, with the blue lights and the death?
What if you’re like Mikey? Who just wants to graduate and go to prom and maybe finally work up the courage to ask Henna out before someone goes and blows up the high school. Again.
Because sometimes there are problems bigger than this week’s end of the world, and sometimes you just have to find the extraordinary in your ordinary life.
Even if your best friend is worshipped by mountain lions.
Award-winning writer Patrick Ness’s bold and irreverent novel powerfully reminds us that there are many different types of remarkable.


 Patrick Ness is a popular author around the bookish community, and I’m both a little happy and sad to say this is my first book from him I read. The Rest of Us Just Live Here is a book I was excited to read. There are plenty of stories about “The Chosen One” or all the “Destined” people that have to defend the world and have life altering and epic journeys. But how many books have you read that are about the ordinary people, the characters that get one little scene –usually getting passed in the hallway at school as the “Chosen One” rushes by to save the day? That is one reason I was looking forward to reading this book, the uniqueness of the idea for the main plot.
Here are a few points that I liked about the story:

         *The Chapter Headings. This may seem like a weird part to like, but that is only because you have not seen these headings. I was not expecting to get a complete story through the headings, but that is what Ness gave us. The main story is about the “ordinary” kids living their lives while the “Indie Kids” go though the typical fantasy story. To help give the readers an idea of what is going on, the main fantasy aspect of the story is told through the chapter headings. All the chapters are like this, and Ness had a fun way in tying both of these stories together. Sometimes it was hard to know if I was reading a fantasy book with Immortals and powers or if I was reading a contemporary. This was something unique to me and I really enjoyed getting both ends of the story. Here is an example to help give you an idea:

CHAPTER THE FIRST, in which the Messenger of the Immortals arrives in a surprising shape, looking for a permanent Vessel; and after being chased by her through the woods, indie kid Finn meets his final fate.

– The Cover. Not only is the cover lovely, IT GLOWS IN THE DARK!!!! Extra points for that!

– Non-Perfect Characters. It’s easy for authors to write characters that may have one flaw, but most of the time it’s nothing big and the characters always seem to be perfect. The four main characters in this story all have a huge flaw or problem and it has some sway in the story. You have a character with OCD, another with Anorexia, one that is half god/Jewish/gay, and one that is the daughter of Missionaries and want to move away to a country at war. All of these characters together helped make an interesting story.

– A Good Representation of Mental Illness. Two of the characters have a form of mental illness and Ness did a good job with describing what it is like for these main characters to live with mental illness and the way it has an impact on their lives as well as those around them.

– Being a Standalone. I have not read many standalones recently so it was nice to enjoy one. The story was able to have a neatly done ending so the reader is not needing another book to find out what happens, but there is still room for more to the story if the author wishes to do more. One point I didn’t like:

– Always Pointing Out The Main Characters Are Normal. The summary alone tells the reader that this story is about the “normal” characters in the story, but it was a bit annoying and repetitive to keep being told this over and over. There were several mentions of “indie kid this…” “Indie kid that…” “Indie kids are always making the school blow up…” after a few instances of this I get the point.

Overall this was a fun and entertaining story. I can’t honestly compare it to other Patrick Ness books since I haven’t read any others, but I have been told this was not his best work. I do admit I was expecting a bit more with all the hype this book was getting, but I did enjoy it. Over all I would probably give this story a 3. 5 or 4 stars.

Review provided by
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About the author
Patrick Ness, an award-winning novelist, has written for England’s Radio 4 and Sunday Telegraph and is a literary critic for The Guardian. He has written many books, including the Chaos Walking Trilogy, The Crash of Hennington, Topics About Which I Know Nothing, and A Monster Calls.
He has won numerous awards, including the Guardian Children’s Fiction Prize, the Booktrust Teenage Prize, and the Costa Children’s Book Award. Born in Virginia, he currently lives in London.

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