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Things To Do Before the End of the World by Emily Barr - Blog Tour and Review

Saturday, May 8, 2021

Hello and welcome to my stop on the blog tour for Things To Do Before the End of the World by Emily Barr! It's a pleasure to welcome you. If you haven't been here before please do have a click round and read some of my other reviews!

I frst read Emily Barr books when I was at university. She was writing 'chick lit' then, for adults, and I read Cuban Heels, Baggage, and Backpack, I think. Even though she was labelled as 'chick lit' I don't feel like it was at all - the books started off quite happy and jolly but quickly turned into something darker. I read Stranded in 2012, and when I heard a few years ago that Emily had started writing YA, I was keen to read her new stuff. I read The One Memory of Flora Banks in 2017 and The Truth and Lies of Ella Black in 2018, and enjoyed both. So when I got the chance to be included in this blog tour I jumped at it!

So the hero of the book is Libby, who is seventeen. At the beginning of the book, it's December, and she is walking through a park when she learns - along with the seven and a half billion other people on earth - that the world is going to end in nine months. It's something to do with the permafrost melting and releasing too much carbon dioxide, which will mean that humans can no longer breathe properly and will die. All life will be wiped out. 

Libby grieves for a little bit but then decides to do things out of her comfort zone for her last months on earth. She auditions for the college play, and ends up playing Juliet opposite the girl she has a crush on, Zoe. She is generally quite shy and keeps to herself, but tries to change herself. She lives with her mum and stepdad, Sean. She also has her dad, and his fourth wife, Anneka, and her half siblings Sofie and Hans-Erik. Some people don't think the world will actually end, that scientists will sort it out, but everyone is in kind of a fever about it. 

In the beginning of the next year, Libby's dad tells her that he had a brother, Andy, who he was estranged from and who has died in a car crash. He has left all his money to Libby and her dad. He also has a daughter, Natasha, Libby's cousin. Libby's dad tells her she should do what she wants with the money, like travel over Europe during the summer, which is still available via train, and he encourages her to get in touch with Natasha.

The two start an email relationship. Natasha is the outgoing person Libby wishes she was. Natasha gives Libby some tasks to do, like go to a party where Zoe will be. 

Then, Libby and her mum and Sean decide to go to Spain to spend some time, and it's decided Natasha will join them later. She does arrive, and she and Libby have a great time together. But it's obvious something will go wrong. And it does, spectacularly. I loved it, I liked what happened and how chaotic the world was and all of that.

I liked Libby and really wanted her to be okay. I liked the ending of the book a lot. For a depressing book it's quite uplifting! I utterly recommend this, and am giving it a very good four out of five. 

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