Fifteen-year-old New Yorker Daisy is sent to live in the English countryside with cousins she’s never even met. When England is attacked and occupied by an unnamed enemy, the cousins find themselves on their own. Power fails, system fail. As they grow more isolated, the farm becomes a kind of Eden, with no rules. Until the war arrives in their midst.
Daisy’s is a war story, a survival story, a love story—all told in the voice of a subversive and witty teenager. This book crackles with anxiety and with lust. It’s a stunning and unforgettable first novel that captures the essence of the age of terrorism: how we live now.
I first heard about this book last summer from Ariel Bisett and I wanted to read it since. Now I finally picked it up and read it. I am a bit disappointed because I had this picture in my head what this book is going to be, and when it wasn’t what I imagined I was immediately discouraged. However, I still enjoyed it and would recommend it to everyone.
At first I had some trouble getting into this book, but the romance was what got me hooked. It’s not a usual romance and some people will probably say it’s very sick and weird (if you didn’t know, it’s a romance between cousins), but I found it very beautiful. One of my favourite thing about this book is how honest it is. I remember the part, at the very beginning, when it was just the five of them, without adults, and even though they were at war, they were just so happy to be alone, without parents or anyone to tell them what to do. It might not seem apropriate for that situation, but it was the most honest thing I read in a while. Because this is exactly how teenagers would feel.
The middle part of the book was extremely boring to me and I don’t really remember every detail about it, but the last one third of the book was really good and I just flew through it. It was very sad and heart-breaking, especially the last 20-30 pages, but still wonderful. War was described very vividly and all the situations our protagonist found herself in were held very well and, in my opinion, were very realistic. Also, it was very interesting that we never found out with which country was England in war. As I already said, the ending broke my heart, but I guess it could’ve been worse. I think it’s very apropriate and again, realistic.
I don’t know how I feel about Daisy. She didn’t annoy me, but I didn’t love her either. I guess I just don’t have some special opinion about her. I do appreciate her character and everything she’s been through, but I guess I just couldn’t connect with her.
I liked Edmond a lot, though I don’t really know why. I think it’s more that I liked the relationship between him and Daisy and the chemistry they had was just amazing. That’s also why the ending hurt so much.
Piper was probably my favourite character. She is really a badass. Though she is just nine, she managed to deal with war a lot better than most adults and I admire her because of that. This little girl is just awesome.
There was one thing that really confused me about these characters. Are they psychic or just weird? Was Daisy’s connection with Edmund real, or was it all just in her head? Could Isaac really talk to animals? However, I don’t really mind having these questions unanswered because it just adds another layer to the whole story.
The writing style was the biggest fault of this book. At the beginning, I completely hated it and I was even considering putting the book down, but I pushed through because I read some reviews which made me wanted to finish the book, so I continued with it. However, after a while, you get used to this different narrating style and you just go with it. At the end, I actually started to appreciate how unique Meg Rosoff‘s writing is and I ended up really liking it. The thing I found very funny was this random capitalization of everything. However, I can totaly see the point in it. If you’ve read the book, you know what’t I’m talking about.
I think everyone should read this book, because the message it sends is absolutely amazing. War books intrigue me, but they also make me very sad at the same time. However, war books are probably pieces of literature that I appreciate the most. If you haven’t, GO READ THIS BOOK! And enjoy while it’s breaking your heart.