August 25, 2021

The One's We're Meant to Find by Joan He

The One's We're Meant to Find by Joan He
Rating: 3 Stars
Release Date: May 4, 2021
Format: Hardcover/Audiobook
Publisher: Roaring Book Press

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The One’s We’re Meant to Find by Joan He left me emotional and pensive once I finished it. It’s a beautiful tale of two sisters, one who’s trapped on an island with no memory of who she is (only that she has to find her sister). The other is a prodigy living in an “eco-city”, called upon to help protect the future of the human race from the mega-disasters continuously occurring. They are both searching for each other, but I don’t think either was prepared for what they would discover in the process. 

The story is set in a post-climate apocalypse where humanity has damaged the planet beyond recovery and lucky survivors live in the eco-cities (with anyone who’s unlucky forced to still live on land). The most eco-friendly person you’ve ever met? Doesn’t matter one bit if one of their ancestors just happened to work with chemicals. It will immediately disqualify you from citizenship to the eco-cities. The cities are designed in such a way to minimize further human impact on the environment and protect the inhabitants from earthquakes, tsunamis, and storms. While this is definitely a work of fiction, I think it’s important to note that something like this happening in the future is completely possible if people don’t start addressing climate change now. 

Having a sister myself, I completely understand how easy it is to have a complicated relationship yet still care immensely about the other person. Despite their messy relationship, the love between the two is undeniable. I was rooting for Cee and Kay to reunite, but things did NOT turn out the way I was anticipating. Cee’s point of view was much easier to follow than Kay’s. I think it’s because it’s easier to relate to Cee’s quest to survive on the island than everything sciencey Kay is doing in the eco-city. Things can get confusing when switching back and forth, but with taking a couple of notes here and there I was able to follow along successfully. 

The One’s We’re Meant to Find would appeal to a wide range of audiences. It is primarily marketed towards teenagers (being in the young adult book category) but I think that the commentary on climate change, the dual point of view, the plot twists, and the very imaginative, futuristic technology featured in the book will entice older readers as well. If you’re a fan of thought-provoking science fiction reads with a bit of mystery thrown in, then I highly recommend you give this book a chance. 

CW: Gore, Violence, Death of a Loved One, Terminal Illness (Cancer), Drowning, Choking, Mass Death, Grief, Natural Disasters

About the Author

Joan He was born and raised in Philadelphia but still will, on occasion, lose her way. At a young age, she received classical instruction in oil painting before discovering that storytelling was her favorite form of expression. She studied Psychology and East Asian Languages and Cultures at the University of Pennsylvania and currently writes in Chicago. She is the New York Times bestselling author of The Ones We're Meant to Find, Descendant of the Crane, and the forthcoming Strike the Zither, the first in a duology, releasing from Macmillan on October 25, 2022.

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