Can there truly be love after death?Review:
Drifting in the dark waters of a mysterious river, the only thing Amelia knows for sure is that she's dead. With no recollection of her past life—or her actual death—she's trapped alone in a nightmarish existence. All of this changes when she tries to rescue a boy, Joshua, from drowning in her river. As a ghost, she can do nothing but will him to live. Yet in an unforgettable moment of connection, she helps him survive.
Amelia and Joshua grow ever closer as they begin to uncover the strange circumstances of her death and the secrets of the dark river that held her captive for so long. But even while they struggle to keep their bond hidden from the living world, a frightening spirit named Eli is doing everything in his power to destroy their newfound happiness and drag Amelia back into the ghost world . . . forever.
Thrilling and evocative, with moments of pure pleasure, Hereafter is a sensation you won't want to miss.
I love ghost stories, especially when they are well written, and Tara Hudson’s Hereafter, her debut YA, fit perfectly into this category, as not only was it beautifully written but it also included the kind of ghost charm I adore.
Amelia knows very little about herself, but she does know two things: she is a ghost and she is completely alone. Floating in a mysterious, murky river is no one’s idea of a good time, but for Amelia it’s the only constant in her life, the thing that always manages to be there whether she likes it or not. Then Joshua comes along and… she saves him. However, the story does not end there; instead, it starts there, because Joshua is no ordinary teen. He can see and communicate with Amelia, and because of this, Amelia comes out of her fog; she begins to become one with herself and manages to fall in in love. However, a sinister force looms in the distance, a force that not only wants to take away her happiness, but also knows the secret behind her death- the secret she has been dying to know. Will Amelia and Joshua rise above this force? Will they win? In addition, will Amelia learn everything about her past before it’s too late? Find out in this deeply engrossing YA paranormal- one with a fantastic twist nonetheless.
First, I have to say how much I enjoyed the premise behind Hereafter. As mentioned above, I always enjoy a good story involving ghosts, and Hereafter was no different. The idea that Amelia knew very little about her life kept the book flowing at a fast paced because the reader learned and made assumptions as well as guesses about everything right along with Amelia and Joshua. Tara’s idea of the afterworld was also intriguing- if not a little creepy. Either way, it managed to provide yet another thrilling point, especially when Eli, the bad guy, was involved.
The characters in this were another high point. Hudson did a great job of fleshing out Amelia’s character and making her seem realistic given the circumstances, as I could not only feel her struggle to come to terms with her demise, but also feel the hope and love that bloomed within her as her relationship with Joshua flourished. Talking about Joshua, I really enjoyed his character as well. He was in most ways the catalyst in the way he woke Amelia up and made her become a strong, brave girl again, and because of that he was an essential as well as a likable addition to the story. Also while I get a little aggravated with the insta-love YA tends to have, I felt Amelia and Joshua’s romance moved at a reasonable pace for the most part.
Lastly, Hudson’s writing was fantastic. She did a lovely job of bringing the world within the pages of Hereafter to life with her descriptions and development, and because of this, I cannot wait to see what direction she takes this series next.
Thrilling, unique, and stunning, Hereafter is a fantastic debut- one that I highly recommend you pick up.
Hereafter is now out!
Source: Publisher via Netgalley- thanks HarperTeen!