Kirsty Stanley's Reviews > Things to Do Before the End of the World

Things to Do Before the End of the World by Emily Barr
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really liked it
bookshelves: arcs, own-as-e-book, read-in-2021

3.75 stars

This book is a bit of an enigma, a little like the character that bursts into Olivia’s world; Natasha. It seems to be about one thing - the end of the world - but ends up being about something different. That’s not necessarily a bad thing - it depends what you are expecting. Go into this book with an open mind and you will find a classic YA tale of finding yourself and your place in the world.

The two main characters, Olivia (Libby) and Natasha are well rounded and the fledgling relationship between them is at once transforming and unsettling.

There is a mystery within a mystery here at the mention of a name that makes Olivia’s mother uncomfortable and trust definitely plays an important role in the plot.

Each chapter title is a thing to do before the world ends and at the start Natasha challenges Libby to do ten things, however that became a bit throwaway at the end.

I loved the street magic/physic hustling they did and could picture those scenes vividly. And the middle portion does feel like a more classic road trip adventure.

There is also a f/f love story as a sub plot. The only thing I’d have maybe liked to see was Libby be more active in that relationship - and perhaps in the story overall, although the conclusion she comes to about herself was satisfying and it was nice to see acceptance of self over a complete transformation.

The ending felt a little rushed and the mystery reveal was quite telling a little like the investigator announcing to the room who’d done it and why.

Overall strong characterisation with a mixed plot; the end of the world aspect was more of a backdrop although I found the prospect of how the world was to end, identified in the first chapter, pretty horrifying, and that gave the entire book a fraught tone.

Thanks to Dave at The Write Reads and the publisher for the e-arc for the purposes of an honest review. The book publishes on 13th May 2021. Do check out what the other bloggers thought too.
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Reading Progress

February 7, 2020 – Shelved
February 7, 2020 – Shelved as: to-read
April 27, 2021 – Started Reading
April 27, 2021 – Shelved as: own-as-e-book
April 27, 2021 – Shelved as: arcs
April 27, 2021 – Shelved as: read-in-2021
April 28, 2021 –
36.0%
May 5, 2021 –
66.0%
May 8, 2021 – Finished Reading

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