Thursday, June 24, 2010

Review: The Everafter by Amy Huntley


Madison Stanton doesn't know where she is or how she got there. But she does know this - she is dead. And alone in a vast, dark space. The only company Maddy has in this place are luminescent objects that turn out to be all the things she lost while she was alive. And soon she discovers that, with these artifacts, she can reexperience - and even change - moments from her life.
Her first kiss.
A trip to Disney World.Her sister's wedding.
A disastrous sleepover.In reliving these moments, Maddy learns illuminating and frightening truths about her life - and death.
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Plot: 4/5
Creativity: 4/5
Characters: 4/5
Writing: 4/5
Impact: 3/5
Overall: 3/5

What happens when people die? Do they vanish? Are they reincarnated, or do they move on to someplace else? Does heaven exist? Life after death is, and has always been, one of the most discussed topics. Nobody really knows anything about it, so everyone has a different idea on the afterlife. The Everafter is one of those.

Maddy is dead. As in really, really dead. But she doesn't know how or why she is, and she has no recollection of the last minutes of her life. She just knows that she's not in heaven, and she's not in hell; she's in a dark, endless nothing. She's in Is.

Unfamiliar with the workings of the new place, space, dimension or whatever you may call it, Maddy explores and soon finds that she isn't alone- with her in Is are items that she lost sometime in her life. Loose change, an old toy, her boyfriend's jacket- every single thing she once lost suddenly finds its way back to her. And she discovers that when she touches the objects, she can go back to the moments when she lost them. Going from one object to another, Maddy relives some of the most pivotal experiences of her life, and ultimately tries to unravel the mystery of her death.

Original, mysterious and beautifully-written, The Everafter is an interesting take on the concept of life after death. And it doesn't only explore the existence of the afterlife, it's also a mystery- the desire to discover the secrets of Maddy's life and death will keep the pages turning.

Maddy is an excellent main character. She starts off being a blur, but as the story progresses the readers get to know more about her character, and through the flashbacks, they get to see what shaped her to become the way she is. She's laid-back, patient, realistic, and an overall likable central character and narrator.

The secondary characters of the novel are great as well. Huntley does an excellent job of developing the characters through Maddy's flashbacks. It's not an easy task, but she does it well and by the end of the book, readers get to know everyone and see what role each character played in Maddy's life.

Huntley's writing style is beautiful. Flowing and descriptive, her narration as Maddy is just plain delightful. The transitions between flashbacks and the present is also smooth. Readers will have no trouble at all reading Huntley's pristine prose.

Although I didn't really care much for the epilogue and some parts were a little dull for me, I enjoyed reading The Everafter. I loved the character of Maddy, and I really liked reading about her past and at the same time trying to put together the pieces of her mysterious death. A light yet  meaningful read, The Everafter is a unique story on an interesting topic that will have readers pondering, and maybe even believing in, life after death.

4 comments:

  1. I just got this book in the mail last week, so I'll read your review in more depth after I've read the book. I glanced at your scores for it, though, and figure that it's worth the time!

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  2. I'm always pulled in when I see a book that explores what happens after death- there's just something that I find irresistible about them. It's awesome to hear there's a good narrator and excellent writing as well- lovely review! (:

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  3. The cover and premise just leave me feeling sad and lonely, but your review makes it sound hopeful and illuminating. I haven't read that many books narrated by a dead person, but I loved The Lovely Bones. I'm glad this turned out to be a positive read for you. Thanks for the review!

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  4. This sounds great, so I've added it to my wishlist, thanks for the great review!

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