The charm and intensity of the Barnes and Noble and Jimmy Fallon Book Club Pick, Tomorrow and Tomorrow and Tomorrow by Gabrielle Zevin will sneak up on you unsuspectedly and before you know it you will be deep into a book about the coming of age of three young people that mirrors the coming of age of the video game industry.
After a devastating accident, Sam Mazur is in the hospital and hasn’t spoken to anyone in weeks. In walks Sadie Green and everything changes. Bonded over Super Mario Bros in the game room, the two become thick as thieves and ultimately inseparable young teens; a friendship for life. After a misunderstanding that keeps them apart for 6 years, the two gamers reconnect as college students in a subway station and their relationship rekindles over the idea of creating a video game together.
The friends don’t share class or backgrounds yet their connection is strong. Sam (a Harvard student who is part Korean and Jewish) has had a difficult upbringing, lost his mother in an accident, and has a physical disability, all of which impacts how he feels about himself, his identity and where he fits in. Sadie (MIT student, Jewish American) a woman in a man’s industry, has her own personal challenges and the two of them may not always succeed in having each others best interests in mind. Sam’s roommate, Marx, (an intelligent yet directionless actor…and yes, this is where the Shakespearean title comes from) becomes indispensable to them as they work on all aspects of creating and selling their video game. With slightly different goals and aspirations and the need for recognition and money, along with a bit of jealousy, the complex relationships of Sam, Sadie and Marx wax and wane over the decades as they showcase their talents to the gaming world.
In her 10th novel, author Gabrielle Zevin does an incredible job developing her characters; showing how they are challenged with life tragedies, how they persist to achieve success, and how their relationships change and grow over time. Zevin’s writing exhibits her knowledge of gaming and this is her first book that has a Korean – Jewish character, like herself. Tomorrow and Tomorrow and Tomorrow is a smart, engaging coming of age story of love, friendships, ambition, mixed race, disability, personal growth and the intricacies of the video game world.
I enjoyed this book more than anticipated and recommend it highly! After reading this book my perspective on gaming has changed a bit, too. I see more of the positive qualities in gaming and can appreciate the intelligence, determination and talents of those who play, design and develop games.
About the Author:
GABRIELLE ZEVIN is an internationally best-selling and critically acclaimed author, whose books have been translated into thirty-eight languages.
The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry spent several months on the New York Times Best Seller List, reached #1 on the National Indie Best Seller List, was a USA Today Best Seller, and has been a best seller all around the world. A.J. Fikry was honored with the Southern California Independent Booksellers Award for Fiction and the Booksellers’ Prize (Japan), and was long listed for the International Dublin Literary Award. The Toronto Globe and Mail called the book “a powerful novel about the power of novels.”
Her debut, Margarettown, was a selection of the Barnes & Noble Discover Great New Writers program and was long-listed for the James Tiptree, Jr. Award. The Hole We’re In was a New York Times Editor’s Choice title. Of The Hole We’re In, The New York Times Book Review wrote, “Zevin breathes real life into this tough-girl vet, a heroine for our times, recognizable from life but new to fiction.” Young Jane Young won the Southern Book Prize and was one of the Washington Post’s “Fifty Notable Works of Fiction.” In a starred review, Kirkus Reviews wrote, “This book will not only thoroughly entertain everyone who reads it; it is the most immaculate takedown of slut-shaming in literature or anywhere else. Cheers, and gratitude, to the author.”
She has also written books for young readers. Elsewhere was an American Library Association Notable Children’s Book, a finalist for the Quill Award and the California Young Reader Medal, and was long listed for the Carnegie Medal. It won the Borders Original Voices Award, the Ulmer Unke, and the Sakura Medal. Of Elsewhere, the New York Times Book Review wrote, “Every so often a book comes along with a premise so fresh and arresting it seems to exist in a category all its own… Elsewhere, by Gabrielle Zevin, is such a book.”
She is the screenwriter of Conversations with Other Women (Helena Bonham Carter) for which she received an Independent Spirit Award Nomination for Best First Screenplay. She and director Hans Canosa adapted her novel Memoirs of a Teenage Amnesiac (ALA Best Books for Young Adults, NYPL Books for the Teenage) into the Japanese film, Dare ka ga Watashi ni Kissu wo Shita. She has occasionally written criticism for the New York Times Book Review and NPR’s All Things Considered, and she began her writing career at age fourteen as a music critic for the Fort Lauderdale Sun-Sentinel. Her Modern Love column was recently read by Sandra Oh for the Modern Love podcast.
Zevin is a graduate of Harvard University. She lives in Los Angeles. Her tenth novel, Tomorrow, and Tomorrow, and Tomorrow was published by Knopf in 2022, and is being developed into a feature film by Temple Hill and Paramount Studios.