Novel Novice's Reviews > Hereafter

Hereafter by Tara Hudson
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Jun 02, 2011

really liked it

With the market for paranormal YA romance so over-saturated these days, I find myself getting pickier and pickier about the books I’ll heap praise on — and the series I’ll commit to following through into additional books. After all, there are SO many multi-books series popping up these days, and not all of them feel worthy of the multi-book treatment.

But I can say with absolute certainty that Tara Hudson’s Hereafter is one new paranormal YA series that I will see through to the next book.

The book follows Amelia — a ghost wandering the banks of the river where she drowned. She’s not exactly sure how she drowned, or who she was before she died (those memories are hazy), but she knows she’s dead and she knows none of the living can see/hear/touch/feel her. Until one day she sees a boy drowning and someone manages to make a connection. When he survives, she discovers that Joshua can see her; can hear her. He can touch her. As they begin to explore their unique bond, parts of Amelia’s past start to unravel — all the while outside forces (both living and from beyond) threaten to tear them apart.

What first struck me about Hereafter was the lovely writing. Each passage is simply beautiful — and since Amelia starts off her story in a solitary existence, Hudson is given ample opportunity to show off her skills as a writer. My enchantment with the book only grew as I got to know the characters. Amelia and Joshua are interesting individuals, but they’re even more compelling together and when juxtaposed with the other characters in the book. A romantic couple alone do not make an interesting read; it’s the characters around them who make their story worth reading.

It’s also nice to see Amelia come into her strengths as she discovers exactly what she is and isn’t capable of as a ghost.

And while Amelia and Joshua’s romance seems doomed to fail, they never seem to give up hope — and their fortitude is contagious; it’s easy to get swept up in the urgency of their love and the challenges facing them. And while Hudson wraps up the main conflict of the story, she leaves even loose threads open to keep me lingering in this world and ready for more. This is an example of a multi-book series that works, because I want to keep reading. I want the rest of this trilogy — and I look forward to seeing more plot points addressed and resolved.

Hereafter is a ghost story unlike any other. And much like Amelia haunts the river where she drowned, her story will haunt you beyond the very last page.
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