Ness has created a universe where supernatural apocalypses nearly happen at least once a generation (so basically a place where things like the events of Twilight and City of Bones go on every once and a while). However, Mikey and his friends are not the chosen ones who can save the universe (they aren’t even friends with those kids), they’re just trying to get through the rest of high school. Mikey and his friends all have normal (though not insignificant) problems they’re trying to deal with as they work their way towards graduation and on the fringes there are the “indie kids,” trying to stop the immortals from ending the world.
In The Rest of Us Just Live Here each chapter opens with a summary of the supernatural battle going on before jumping into Mikey, Mel, Jared, and Henna’s world; where crushes, friendships, and family drama take center stage. Ness does an excellent job of using supernatural novel stereotypes (all the “indie kids” have names like Satchel and Finn), humor, and genuine characters that all have their own issues – even if Mike can’t always see – it to create a story that feels familiar and real (even if there are the occasional encounters with zombie deer).