If Tomorrow Doesn't Come (Hardcover)
May/June 2023 Kids Indie Next List
“The morning Avery plans to drown herself, she learns that an asteroid will hit Earth in eight days. She decides to ride out the end of the world without telling anyone what almost happened. A devastating, hopeful book about what makes life worth living.”
— Marianne Wald, East City Bookshop, Washington, DC
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 live: 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.
About the Author
Lambda Literary Fellow Jen St. Jude (she/they) grew up in New Hampshire apple orchards and now lives in Chicago with her wife and dog. She holds degrees in creative writing from Colby College and Harvard University Extension School, and has served as an editor for Chicago Review of Books, Just Femme & Dandy, and Arcturus Magazine. When she's not reading or writing, you can find her cheering on the Chicago Sky and Red Stars. If Tomorrow Doesn't Come is her first novel.
“Jen St. Jude's end of the world story makes for one hell of a debut novel. It's lush, searching, and ultimately full of hope. I loved it.” —Emily M. Danforth, national bestselling and award-winning author of The Miseducation of Cameron Post
“If Tomorrow Doesn't Come is a novel that carves a space in your heart and remains there forever. Breathtakingly written, Jen St. Jude masterfully explores queerness, depression, and shame, while beautifully capturing family, friendship, and love, and the intersections that often exist between these things. Hopeful above all else.” —Rachael Lippincott, New York Times bestselling author of She Gets the Girl
“This book is devastatingly brilliant. Jen St. Jude is hands down one of the most talented new voices in YA, and soon, everyone will know it.” —Leah Johnson, bestselling author of You Should See Me in a Crown and Rise to the Sun
“If Tomorrow Doesn't Come is a brilliant story of hope, healing, and resilience from a thoughtful and fearless new voice in YA.” —Brandy Colbert, award-winning author of Little & Lion
“An electric, urgent miracle of a book that asks what--and who--we dare to live for. Avery's story will shatter your heart and fill it with light again. Keep an eye on this writer: St. Jude is here to stay.” —Kelly Quindlen, bestselling author of She Drives Me Crazy and Her Name in the Sky
“A gorgeously written master class in exploring queerness and depression with honesty, gravity, and balance, If Tomorrow Doesn't Come is an absolute life-changer - and life-saver - of a book. It had my heart simultaneously cracking and blooming with hope from its very first lines long past The End.” —Dahlia Adler, author of Cool for the Summer
“If Tomorrow Doesn't Come is a beautiful exploration of the endless night of depression and the illuminating joy of what happens when morning comes and the sun rises. This stunning book is one you'll want tucked away in your backpack at the end of the world.” —Jas Hammonds, author of We Deserve Monuments
“Few storytellers can balance heartbreak and hope as powerfully as Jen St. Jude. If Tomorrow Doesn't Come is an incredible, poignant debut with a critical message and characters who will stick with you long after you've turned the final page.” —Robbie Couch, author of The Sky Blues
“An achingly tender and poignantly honest look at depression, queerness, and love at the end of the world, If Tomorrow Doesn't Come will break your heart and put it back together again. Jen St. Jude's breathtaking prose and thoughtful exploration of emotion firmly cements them as one of the most endearing new voices in YA. This book is a marvel.” —Adrienne Tooley, author of Sweet & Bitter Magic
“At once cinematic and intimate, If Tomorrow Doesn't Come weaves the apocalyptic chaos of a doomed world with the quiet vulnerability of complicated love to create an urgent, action-filled tapestry of humanity, hope, humor, and high stakes. The best kind of thriller: One that reminds you what it means to be alive, and what it means to be together.” —Tucker Shaw, author of When You Call My Name
“Avery's complicated yet fierce relationship with Cass and the fraught energy between Avery and her parents are rendered in clear and emotive detail, yet most notable is St. Jude's heart-achingly precise interpretation of one teenager's experience with depression and suicidal ideation. Hope for a bright future is always evident in this sometimes dark, thought-provoking debut.” —Publishers Weekly, starred review
"If Tomorrow Doesn't Come is a gorgeously written portrayal of one teenager's decision to continue living and loving through impossible circumstances." - Shelf Awareness
“Any student who has struggled with intense depression or feelings of isolation while friends and family drift away will identify with Avery.” —School Library Connection
“A worthy addition to a very narrow convergence of mental health crises that already exist at the verge of the end of the known world.” —BCCB
“St. Jude examines the viciousness of depression and the inexplicable way it has of being exacerbated by everything and nothing. . . This story is raw, but unflinching, too, until the bitter end.” —Booklist
“This courageous tale illuminates a young queer woman's quest out of self-loathing toward self-acceptance. It boldly asks: When the end is near, how do we live, and whom do we hold most dear? . . . A textured book offering readers hope in the face of impossibility.” —Kirkus Reviews