Review: I Hope You Get This Message by Farah Naz Rishi
“Earth society has programmed us to keep our heads down and remain as these mindless drones. Everyone tells us we all have to follow the same blueprint: You gotta go to school. Graduate. Go to college, if you want the best job. Get married. Make babies. Work some more, get promoted. Then you retire. We want, and want, and want, and then we die. Then people say, Oh, what a great life that person led. But that's not living. It's just a way to exist.”
Name: I Hope You Get This Message
Author: Farah Naz Rishi
Genre: Young Adult, Sci-Fi, LGBTQ
I Hope You Get This Message is a book that was intended to make a point of human existence. It was meant in a way to inspire you to speak more to your parents and be more open about your feelings, and that's really the only thing it does. The story and the characters simply don't go anywhere specially remarkable and are somewhat forgettable. The premise of the story is one I've hear before: aliens are attacking the world in 7 days. A group of young adults are coming to terms with what it really means for them that there won't be a world to live in in 7 days and they try to find themselves in such a short amount of time.
My main problem with the book is not the writing, which is awesome. My problem was that the characters and the point of view the story was written from. We have a girl who's trying to look for her absentee father, a boy who is trying to find his sister who left home after coming out to her Muslim family and felt misunderstood and a boy who is unsure of himself and his future who has had emotional issues and deals with the burden of maintaining his family. All in all, we have three stories that intermingle with each other and are all in a way trying to find answer before this apocalypse hits. The issue is that I found the sub-characters more interesting that our supposed heroes. Give the story of Leyla and her leaving home and the reasons she left and her wanting to reconnect before the world ends, or give me Mari's story a sick child who is seeing the world end in 7 days but if she doesn't her world and her brother's might end as well. The sub characters had more story and drive and consequently I wasn't able to feel or understand the main characters.
I rarely love books that have different point of views because I end up not connecting with any of them.
The ending was another thing that wasn't my cup of tea. I felt as if the issues were unresolved. Were left with a semi cliff hanger of Mari seeing a bright light, as the story ends with a sweet note one of our main characters left her which was pretty sweet. However, what about Cate and her mission to find her father who might have been Jesse's father. The big reunion between Layla and her brother is a page long. We've been waiting for these big moments or revelations that don't end up being anything otherworldly.
All in all, there are better sci-fi's out there because the characters weren't as developed or explored. However, the writing is spotless and the overall feel or message the book is trying to portray is beautifully inspiring.
--- 2.5 ---