If Tomorrow Doesn’t Come Review

By Jen St. Jude

Publisher: Bloomsbury YA

Print Length: 416

Release Year: 2023

Genre: Science Fiction

Avg. Goodreads Rating: 4.48

Available on Amazon and B&N

Special thanks to theWriteReads for including me in this tour and providing me with an ARC.

We Are Okay meets They Both Die at the End in this YA debut about queer first love and mental health at the end of the world-and the importance of saving yourself, no matter what tomorrow may hold.

Avery Byrne has secrets. She’s queer; she’s in love with her best friend, Cass; and she’s suffering from undiagnosed clinical depression. But on the morning Avery plans to jump into the river near her college campus, the world discovers there are only nine days left to an asteroid is headed for Earth, and no one can stop it.

Trying to spare her family and Cass additional pain, Avery does her best to make it through just nine more days. As time runs out and secrets slowly come to light, Avery would do anything to save the ones she loves. But most importantly, she learns to save herself. Speak her truth. Seek the support she needs. Find hope again in the tomorrows she has left.

If Tomorrow Doesn’t Come is a celebration of queer love, a gripping speculative narrative, and an urgent, conversation-starting book about depression, mental health, and shame. (Goodreads)

World Building★★★★

St. Jude presents us with an overall unique story. If Tomorrow Doesn’t Come is a raw coming-of-age tale where the characters are forced to come to terms with not only the reality of who they are and what that entails but also come to terms with the fact that they will die in a week. Being on the cusp of adulthood is overwhelming for everyone; add in the world ending, and you have a recipe for incomprehensible stress. St. Jude captors the emotions of all the characters in a very real way, whether they have accepted their fate, are frantic, or simply numb. 

Outside of the whole “what would you do if the world was ending in a week” conversation, St. Jude fills this book with many powerful tropes. With a protagonist on the brink of suicide, we are initially introduced to the serious tone of the book and a theme that intertwines itself throughout the book. Mental health is presented without the usual sugar coating. The character’s shame is real. Their love is real. 

On the note of love, this book is full of it. While queer love takes the forefront of the story, familial and platonic love are also explored. And while taking the time to explore relationships that are not based on love. 

So much is packed into this small package, but it never feels as though you are being force-fed information. The story flows well, and St. Jude utilizes a non-linear storytelling technique exceptionally well. While the upcoming apocalypse is the primary catalyst for the plot, it doesn’t stop If Tomorrow Doesn’t Come from being a poignant character-driven story.

Subjective Rating

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Objective Rating

Rating: 4.5 out of 5.

Final Rating

Rating: 4 out of 5.


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