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

Another clever and unique novel from one of my absolute favourite authors.

The Rest of Us Just Live Here

The Rest of Us Just Live Here summary

Not everyone has to be the chosen one.

The one who’s supposed to fight the zombies, or the soul-eating ghosts, or whatever this new thing is, with the blue lights and the death.

What if you were Mikey? Who just wants to graduate and go to prom before someone goes and blows up the high school. Again.

And what if there were problems bigger than this week’s end of the world and you just have to find the extraordinary in your ordinary life? Even if you best friend might be the God of mountain lions…

My thoughts

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: Patrick Ness is a genius. The Rest of Us Just Live Here is a brilliant contemporary novel with a fantasy twist that manages to subtly yet powerfully highlight lots of important issues such as sexuality, OCD, divorce and alcohol abuse in an entertaining and somehow charming way.

Patrick’s brilliantly clever idea of exploring the story of the Mikeys of the world who aren’t the chosen ones but still have a story to tell. Those stories are the stories that tend to be forgotten in a world full of vampires and zombies and werewolves.

I adored the chapter headings, each one a paragraph-long insight into what’s going on in the story that does follow the chosen ones, which is running parallel to Mikey’s story and occasionally overlaps. It’s an inspired way to remind readers about the message that not everyone has to be the chosen one, and each paragraph is sarcastic, witty and are bound to make you chuckle.

It does have a couple of slower moments and isn’t quite as amazing as Patrick’s More Than This (which remains one of my favourite books of all time), but the concept behind The Rest of Us Just Live Here is another of Patrick Ness’s incredibly unique and clever ideas and I wouldn’t hesitate recommend it.

I know that there are many excited readers out there who cannot wait to get their hands on this novel. I was reading this on the London Underground a few months back and it’s the first time a stranger has ever approached me about a book. I hated seeing the guy’s disappointed face when he found out it was a proof copy, but that just shows you how highly-anticipated this novel is, and by people from all walks of life.

The Rest of Us Just Live Here will be out on 27 August and you can pre-order your copy here.

My rating

***** 5/5 stars

You might also like:

The Unlikely Hero of Room 13B by Teresa Toten

Juvie by Steve Watkins

The Knife of Never Letting Go by Patrick Ness

Forgive Me, Leonard Peacock by Matthew Quick



  1. kendraleighton
    23rd August 2015 / 2:08 pm

    Great to hear you loved it so much — even more excited for its release now! I love the intelligence and originality of Patrick Ness’s novels.

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