The Catastrophic History of You And Me

( 23 )

Overview

An addictively page-turning debut for fans of Before I Fall and The Fault in Our Stars

Brie is the “biggest, cheesiest, sappiest romantic” who believes that everyone will find their perfect someone, so when Jacob, the love of Brie's life, tells her he doesn't love her anymore, the news breaks her heart, literally, and she dies. But now that she's D&G (dead and gone), Brie revisits the living world to discover that her family has begun to unravel and her best friend has ...

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The Catastrophic History of You and Me

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Overview

An addictively page-turning debut for fans of Before I Fall and The Fault in Our Stars

Brie is the “biggest, cheesiest, sappiest romantic” who believes that everyone will find their perfect someone, so when Jacob, the love of Brie's life, tells her he doesn't love her anymore, the news breaks her heart, literally, and she dies. But now that she's D&G (dead and gone), Brie revisits the living world to discover that her family has begun to unravel and her best friend has been keeping an intimate secret about her boyfriend. Somehow, Brie must handle all of this while navigating through the five steps of grief with the help of Patrick, her mysterious bomber-jacketed guide to the afterlife. But how is she supposed to face the Ever After with a broken heart and no one to call her own?

"The debut is a fast, twisty, highly dramatic read about the turbulent nature of love."—Romantic Times

"Rothenberg exploes what happens in the afterlife when you aren't quite done with your life."—San Francisco Chronicle

"The funniest, sweetest, most heartfelt, sigh-worthy and oh-so-romantic story I've ever read. You'll love it!"—Cynthia Leitich Smith, New York Times bestselling author of Eternal and Blessed

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Editorial Reviews

Kirkus Reviews
When Brie's heart literally breaks, killing her, she must go through the five stages of grief before moving on in the afterlife. Brie leaves behind a loving family, three best friends and a first boyfriend whose declaration that he didn't love her caused the bizarre heart event that offed her. Under the guidance of the annoying-but-hot Patrick, she explores the afterlife, haunts her ex-boyfriend and works her way through the D&G Handbook (D&G stands for "dead and gone"). It's Patrick who tells her that her first task in the afterlife is to work through those five classic stages: denial, anger, bargaining, sadness and acceptance. Brie is a likable-enough narrator, when she's not being vengeful. But Rothenberg's afterlife is irritatingly undefined for one that comes complete with a handbook. Rules seem to be applied more for narrative convenience than any adherence to complete concept, and the twist that drives the climax, while satisfying in an It's A Wonderful Life kind of way, comes out of nowhere. Moreover, her progress through the stages of grief becomes muddied by her continued interactions with the living world. Yes, she's angry, but it's hard to tell whether she's angry at dying or at her ex-boyfriend. Gabrielle Zevin's Elsewhere (2005) stands out as far better treatment of a similar concept. Interesting idea, not-so-great execution. (Fiction. 13 & up)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780142423905
  • Publisher: Penguin Young Readers Group
  • Publication date: 4/18/2013
  • Pages: 400
  • Sales rank: 264,426
  • Age range: 12 years
  • Product dimensions: 5.50 (w) x 8.10 (h) x 1.10 (d)

Meet the Author

Jess Rothenberg grew up in Charleston, South Carolina, graduated from Vassar College, and spent most of her twenties editing books for teens and middle grade readers. She lives in Brooklyn, where she writes full-time, dances interpretively, and dreams of one day owning a sheepdog named Leo. The Catastrophic History of You and Me is her first novel. Visit her at jessrothenberg.com

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 23 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(15)

4 Star

(4)

3 Star

(3)

2 Star

(1)

1 Star

(0)

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 23 Customer Reviews
  • Posted May 3, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    Heartbreakingly touching!!!!

    Brie is an amazing girl! She has a great boyfriend, she's driven and she is only 15 years old, but she suffers a broken heart at the hands of her boyfriend when he says four little words....I Don't Love You. Her heart literally breaks in two and she dies. What follows is how Brie deals with being D&G(Dead and Gone) and how she deals with leaving her family and friends and makes peace with all that happened. I love how the author weaves images of her past life into events in the hereafter and how her nightmares really were meaningful to her. I also loved how much music played a part int his book with a lot of song lyrics in the titles and stuff. I also liked how the stages of grief(denial, anger, bargaining, sadness, acceptance) really played a part as well. This is an amazing read and I highly recommend it!!

    4 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 8, 2012

    Brie has the perfect life every girl would ever


    Brie has the perfect life every girl would ever dream of. A loving family, awesome BFF’s who’s always there for her, and a wonderful boyfriend. What more would you ask for? Well, everything changed on that one night, when her boyfriend, Jacob told her those four words: I DON’T LOVE YOU. Anyone who would’ve heard that will probably break her heart, but it’s different in Brie’s case, because her heart, LITERALLY broke, therefore causing her death. And that’s when the whole story starts…
    The Catastrophic History of You and Me was different from any novel I’ve read about life after death, in a good way of course. I really enjoyed reading this and I easily finished the novel in one sitting. It was highly addictive!
    Brie was a really fun heroine and I enjoyed reading her point of view. You get to feel the same way she’s feeling as you read. Anger, hurt, betrayal, these were the emotions that I kept on experiencing while reading and it’s as if my heart is also going to break in half. There were times that I cried from the pain, and the next thing I was already laughing! If my folks have seen me, they probably think I’m already nuts! Patrick is another interesting character who never fails to lighten the mood and give humor during the story, which made love him as well.
    One of the things I liked about this novel is the titles for every chapter wherein each was taken from the lyrics of various songs, e.g. “Hey, hey, you, you, I don’t like your girlfriend!”. Another thing was how the stages of grief—Denial, Anger, Bargaining, Sadness, and Acceptance— were incorporated as parts of the novel, which was really awesome! This way, you get to see Brie’s improvement as she tries to accept the fact that she’s already dead, and everything has changed a lot since her death. The twist was really awesome and as you near the end, you’ll know why the title is “The Catastrophic History of You and Me”.
    Over all, this book was a fun and light read. I loved the ending and I’m very satisfied with it. :D

    I give this book 4.5 whales.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 27, 2012

    Review From Gypsy Book Reviews

    Oh, man, The Catastrophic History of You & Me is breathtaking. <3 At first, I wasn’t quite sure about it, but near the end, it gets SO DANG GOOD that I might’ve reread it three times. IT’S JUST SO GOOD.
    Let’s look at the premise—that premise kills me every time. It’s so fascinating, and the sweetest thing (or well, suckiest thing) is that Brie’s heart actually splits in half; two perfect halves. So yeah, that’s literally what happened to her heart.

    Brie herself is an interesting character. Some of the things she does seemed a bit odd and out of character, but I shrugged it off since this book was so addicting. I was hooked as soon as Brie met Patrick, who I just love. <3

    I really liked the history behind those two characters—it was one of my favorite parts of the book, but I can’t SAY since it’s so spoilery. Dang IT. But it really made this book for me, so please read this book! Then talk to me about it because omg I want to talk about it to SOMEONE. Like I am *thisclose* to making my mom read the book just so I can talk about this event to somebody.

    The world-building is so unique; I don’t think I’ve read a heaven book this one before. And it’s mostly set in a pizza place… and man, I wanted some pizza while reading this book. So of course I had to order some and eat it. *NOMNOM*

    This book is so addicting, especially in the middle when things come to light. I HAD to know what was going on! And I just have to say that I love this cover a lot more than the ARC’s cover.

    If you’re dying to read a heart-wrenching, totally interesting and twisty book, I highly suggest The Catastrophic History of You and Me.

    Disclosure: I received this book for review from the publisher.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 5, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    I was lucky enough to get to read an ARC of TCHoY&M and unfo

    I was lucky enough to get to read an ARC of TCHoY&amp;M and unfortunately it only last a day. Wow! Never have 400 pages gone by so fast! When I first started it I knew I was in for a treat, when Brie ends up in a Pizza parlor while waiting to move on. I had a few Beatlejuice moments when she was was handed the D&amp;G (Dead and Gone) handbook but this book is so totally unique that they were only flashes. I was constantly grabbing a tissue to blow my nose and wipe my eyes when only moments before I was laughing out loud. It was amazing at the range of emotions that Rothenberg took me through, much like the 5 stages of grief that Brie had to go through.

    The main characters, Brie and Patrick, were so very real and so likeable and one of my favorite things about the book was the music titles for each chapter. They really set the mood for each chapter and kind of gave you a hint of what was upcoming. And even though I don&rsquo;t listen to music while reading or writing, if I was to reread this book, I&rsquo;d likely set up the playlist in the background.

    It's a sad romantic story that will make you think about your life, family, friends, and loves. It&rsquo;s a story that as a 14 year old I&rsquo;d have stayed up all night reading and swore I was too sick to go to school the next day- &ldquo;see mom, my eyes are so red and swollen&rdquo;- just so I could finish it. As an adult, I simply stayed up all night and napped the next day. I look forward to reading more by this awesome author. Good job!

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 17, 2012

    S

    I love this book and i picture all as buetiful people exept for larkin. And i hope there is a sequel......

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 27, 2014

    The book judge

    This book on a couple of parts in the story brought me to tears. This book is heartfelt and humorus i very much liked this book.

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  • Posted January 8, 2014

     I absolutely loved this book. Because I am not a writer myself,

     I absolutely loved this book. Because I am not a writer myself, my review will be short and sweet. I completely identified with this book with the music choices of chapter titles, feeling like it was the soundtrack of my life. Even though I am in my mid-thirties, I didn't know this was a young adult selection when I picked it up but I truly feel it is appropriate for that age and not-so-old adults such as myself. It was a truly beautiful story with amazing character expansion and a wonderful storyline. It is one of those books that will stay with me for a long time. After reading it, I wrote to the author to tell her how much I adored her book and received an e-mail back from her. That sort of personal attention makes the book even better. I usually pass on books to my two younger sisters but they can't have this one. They have to buy their own copies because I am keeping this one for myself. :)

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 12, 2013

    By Victoria Farrare

    The book was 100% heartbreaking . This book is up there with the hunger games and divergent. WOW !!!!! I love Patrick he was so cute . I was amazing how much love he had in his heart . He was sweet funny and lost . Brie was beautiful and a beautifuly devolped charactor. She was hurt and took it out the worng way only to find out that she was upset for all the wrong reasons . Jack was so sad . Jacob was was the one who was hiding something . He was really hurt himslef alot. This book desevers 100000000 out of 5 stars .

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 14, 2013

    THE BEST BOOK IN THE WORLD

    This book is abosolutely by far the BEST book i have ever read ever! I think i will have to read it again! After reading it its like i have an ache to read more becuse it was soo good. You have to read this book. IT IS A MUST READ! It was very touching and captures a teens life perfectly.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 14, 2013

    Love it

    One of my favorites for sure! The copy I bought had a much different (and better imho) cover, so thats definitely one of the things that drew me in. But this is probably one of my favorite books! I loved all the characters (even when I didn't....lol if you read the book you will know what I mean) andhow developed all of their great plotlines were. Not joking; READ THIS BOOK!!!!!!!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 13, 2012

    Sweetest book ever

    I love this book is so cute sad and something ever girl wants there life to be well except the dieing part. To me i would love to find the right one where ever he is

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  • Posted September 19, 2012

    I loved this book!!!! It was the first time I have cried over a

    I loved this book!!!! It was the first time I have cried over a story in a long, long time. Usually I start a book as soon as I finish one, but I wanted to savor the story long after I have read it. Love, love, love this book.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 27, 2012

    You should read this book

    I really love the book and it was well written

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  • Posted February 22, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    Mixed Feelings

    The story itself is not what I thought it would be, I had the notion that it was going to be a quick light read when in reality it was a very sad and at times almost depressing read mixed in with humor, except I didn't find myself laughing at the things that were supposed to be funny. The one thing that annoyed me the most was all the cheese references to her name... it gets old after the third time.

    I did like Brie's love for the 80's music at first I thought wow that is a rarity for a teenager of today's generation to love music from that decade but at the same time it's pretty cool and it made more sense after learning there is a perfectly good reason why she loves it so much. I wish I got to know more of Patrick but I didn't learn much about him until the last few chapters. And even though I found him slightly annoying for most of the book it's those last few chapters that helped me actually grow to like him.

    The part of the story which I really enjoyed reading about was Brie's family and friends and how they were dealing with her death. There was a lot of heartbreak, misunderstandings and even betrayal.

    Overall I'm still not sure how I feel about this book, there were moments when I thoroughly enjoyed it and a few times I caught myself skimming a paragraph here and there.

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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    Posted April 18, 2012

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    Posted May 23, 2013

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    Posted February 24, 2012

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    Posted July 12, 2013

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    Posted April 4, 2012

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    Posted May 24, 2012

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