Aug 15, 2012

Hereafter By: Tara Hudson

Author: Tara Hudson
Publisher: Harper Teen
Pages: 404
Rating: 3/5

Can there truly be love after death?

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.
   Hereafter is the first novel in author Tara Hudson's Hereafter Trilogy. I decided to pick this book up while I was in Florida last month (first time EVER at a Barnes and Nobles) because of all the great reviews  this book was getting. After reading it, I can confidently say that I am so glad I gave this book a shot, but it wasn't as great as I expected it to be. 

   Hereafter interestingly shows both the good and bad sides to the "ghost world." Both Eli and Amelia's lost memories provide an eerie mystery you will be dying to unravel. While Joshua's unique ability to see Amelia starts the budding of an intriguing romance. What really got me into the book was all the unanswered questions I was surrounded by- towards the end some of these questions are answered, but others are left unknown for book two!

   This book really sells itself primarily as a love story- but to me, this is where the story went a little flat for me. When Amelia saves Joshua's life, he immediately gains the ability to physically see Amelia. This starts an attraction between the two of them right away. My problem with this love story was I found it a bit boring and rushed. Sure, there were some incredibly sweet moments between the two of them, but apart from that, I found their relationship dry.  It progressed quickly, but I felt their attraction was lacking the intensity it seemed to need. There's so many complications with their relationship (Amelia being a ghost, Joshua ageing while Amelia won't, ect,ect,ect) that I felt that there should have been more energy and fierceness between the two of them. For example, I like to compare Hereafter to The Hollow by Jessica Verday. Both books have unique attributes, but the basis of the two stories is similar (just reversed).  The love story in The Hollow is so much more intense and consuming than the one in Hereafter. I think that "connection" is really important because it adds passion to the story and is more exciting to read. I'm interested to see if Amelia and Joshua's relationship changes in this aspect in book two. 
   I do have to point out that it was incredibly interesting reading through Amelia's perspective as a ghost. Usually in Y.A. Fiction, it is extremely common for the male lead to be the supernatural being- but not in Hereafter! And although Joshua does make a discovery of his own (sorry guys, I'm not giving away spoilers ;) Amelia still knows so little about herself that it makes reading through her each and every discovery entertaining!

Favourite Quotes...

“Jillian,” I whispered, “I know you don’t know who I am. But I love your brother, and I know you do too. So . . . do you think you could wake up? Do you think you could at least try?”
For far too long she gave me no response. I’d just about given up—hung my head and prepared myself for the inevitable, impossible job of comforting Joshua—when Jillian whispered back. 
“I guess. Since you asked so nicely.” 
In spite of everything, a quiet laugh escaped my lips.
“Thank God. Because I have a feeling you’d be a huge pain in the ass if you died.” 
“So . . . this means we’re buried in the same cemetery?”
He nodded, and then the tiniest smile crept over his features. When he spoke again, his tone had lost some of its bitter edge. “More proof that we’re fated to be together, don’t you think?” 
“If that were the case, Eli, I’d have a whole graveyard full of choices, wouldn’t I?”
   Overall I'm glad I gave Hereafter a shot but it was a bit of a disappointment after reading such great reviews. The book is neither good nor bad, just....blah. The second book, Arise, has already been released and is already on my TBR shelf- I'm crossing my fingers book two will be more exciting than the first! Have you read Hereafter? Did you love it, or hate it? Let me know your thoughts in the comments! Keep Reading!
Your Y.A. Bookworm,
Caitlin <3


  1. This sounds like an interesting book! Thanks for your review :)

  2. Wow! I'm loving it already. I can't wait to start this series. Probably will wait till the last book comes out and then buy them all at the same time. :) Great review.

    1. I love reading like that- I wish I had the patience for it though :'(


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