When you hear that the premise of the book is about a dead girl, you don't expect the novel to be fun, lighthearted, and completely cheesy. However, The Catastrophic History Of You & Me is all of those things, whilst masking a rather dark undertone that you don't notice until you put the book down. To be perfectly honest with you, I'm not entirely sure how I feel about this novel. Yes, it's the perfect blend of light and dark, but there were a dozen things I absolutely hated about this book.
The characters, for example. Initially, I kind of liked Brie. I thought she was absolutey hilarious! Unfortunately, her childlike voice eventually started irritating me, and the fact that she had to Capitilize So Many Things really made me want to slap her. As the book progressed, she started sounding more and more immature, and that just didn't sit well. Patrick, too, never really appealed to me. Thinking about it now, he was actually a pretty deep character, but Rothenberg's writing didn't portray that at all during the story. There were a few moments when I thought I caught a glimpse of depth beneath the joking exterior, but it never lasted long. Even when he was talking about serious subjects, the humour Rothenberg created him with never fully went away.
Which, of course, leads me into the writing. In all honesty, it was pretty bad - you can definitely tell this is a debut novel. Not only were Rothenberg's characters pretty unlikeable, her inability to describe things in a realistic manner annoyed me. I understand that this novel is unrealistic in a lot of ways, but the fact that I couldn't even imagine the simplest of settings really made me dislike the writing.
Even with all that said and done, however, I could not put this novel down. I was completely hooked until the very end, and even though the last fifty or so pages were extremely confusing and seemed rather rushed, I still couldn't bring myself to stop reading. Though I didn't enjoy The Catastrophic History Of You & Me as much as I thought I would, it was still a decent enough read if you don't know what to pick up next.