Updated: Jan 20, 2019
Thanks to Scholastic for providing an advance copy of Come November for review purposes.
Humans deal with trauma in various ways, with some being more altruistic than others. As the next generation in our rapidly evolving world, we have been “given” the responsibility to separate the fact from the occult, and Marina wrestles with this as her family and social life teeters on edge.
Marina’s mother is a member of the Next World Society, a surprisingly diverse group of individuals who believe that the world is heading towards inevitable destruction as a result of human irresponsibility in industry, foresting, and ethics in general. The NWS’s main event they prepare for is the Departure, a period of time on November 17th during which they will board a spaceship heading for the Next World. Although this sounds ridiculous to an outsider, the NWS has attracted a large following, particularly from individuals who have endured trauma or conflict. It quite literally provides an escape from the world, and the immersion that the NWS enforces through fellowship and Harmonization, a meditation-like process in which the energies of the members are collected and synchronized, only increases the spell that the NWS has bound on these people.
All teenagers go through a period of coming of age- learning and it is a recurring theme in multiple YA novels. But the amalgam of social insecurity with familial instability, all wrapped up with a heaping serving of adolescent angst is what makes Marina’s character stand out among the other YA coming-of-age novels. The author artfully shows us her perspective without stirring up too much pity or cynicism within the reader. The dreams that Marina has of Columbia University and becoming a wri