Katherine Marple's Reviews > After

After by Amy Efaw
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's review
Oct 08, 2011

really liked it
Read in October, 2011

"After" has a very serious topic. I was disgusted with Devon at the beginning, having just a three month old baby girl myself. I wanted to strangle her. I wanted to vomit. But, I also could understand how something like what she did could happen to a woman, under specific circumstances.

Devon hid her pregnancy for the entire 9 months. Not only did she hide it from her mother, her friends, but she also hid it from herself. She discreditted everything her mind was telling her about her own body, saying weight gain was due to the holidays, her tiredness was due to her increased training for soccer, her nausea was over some stale food she'd eaten, etc. And then when her baby came out of her in the quiet of her apartment while her mother was at work, she freaked out, took the child, put her inside the bathroom trash bag, tied it up, carried her outside to the dumpster, and threw her away.

I know, it's disgusting to think about. "After" brings you through the events leading up to Devon's daughter's birth, explores what was going on inside her head while she was pregnant, how she rationalized it away, how she denied even having had sex that one time, how she could possibly discard a newborn baby while it was crying for its life... in a trash bag, tied, and in a dumpster.

I felt compassion for her about halfway through the book. Once I started to see what was happening to Devon herself, what her thought processes were, how she was trying to figure out what had happened that day, how she truly did not understand, I felt empathy for her. In the end, I wanted her to have a chance to hold her newborn daughter. Women suffer for Post Partum Depression all the time. I wanted Devon to be diagnosed with PPD so she could come to terms with what she did to her child.

The ending surprised me a little, even though in the back of my mind I would probably have done the same. Good book. Stays with you.

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