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Chasing Before

(The Memory Chronicles #2)

3.56  ·  Rating details ·  199 ratings  ·  44 reviews
“I’m a ticking time bomb. And one day soon everything is going to explode.”

Felicia and Neil have arrived in Level 3 and are supposed to prepare for their divine vocations.

But during Felicia and Neil's training period, a series of explosions rips through Level 3. Tension is high, and casualties are mounting. A rift forms between the pair, one that grows wider when Felicia r
Hardcover, 368 pages
Published August 26th 2014 by Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers
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Lenore Appelhans
Oct 12, 2012 added it  ·  (Review from the author)
The CHASING BEFORE playlist so far:

What Else Is There? by Royksopp
Here In Me by Saint Saviour
Demons by Imagine Dragons
Fall For You by Secondhand Serenade
Headlights by Morning Parade
Move Along by The All-American Rejects
Bedroom Hymns by Florence + the Machine
Timshel by Mumford & Sons
Don't by Jewel
No Direction by Longwave
Youth by Daughter
Deadlines and Commitments by The Killers
Bad Blood by Bastille
Hurricane by Ms Mr
River by Civil Twilight
Lies by Cvrches
Jen (The Starry-Eyed Revue)
An advance copy of this title was provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

This review can also be found at The Starry-Eyed Revue.

I really enjoyed Lenore's take on the afterlife in The Memory of After (previously titled Level 2), that we don't go straight to Heaven but that there are levels to our afterlife that we ascend to as we become ready. I also really liked her use of flashbacks as memories to show us how Felicia had spent her short time on Earth prior to entering Le
Dec 09, 2014 rated it really liked it
Note: I know Lenore Appelhans.

It's been awhile since I read THE MEMORY OF AFTER (published in hardcover as LEVEL 2), so it took several chapters before I readjusted to the mythology of the series and remembered what had happened before. Felicia and her boyfriend Neil have both moved on to Level 3, the second level of the afterlife. Unfortunately, the Morati (a group of rogue angels) have moved into Level 3 too.

There were several things I liked about CHASING BEFORE and several things that frustr
Nobonita - The Bengali Nomad
Jan 09, 2013 marked it as to-read
Shelves: wishlist
Look,I don't even need this in print form.Just hand me over the draft,Lenore,or it's going to get ugly....
Nov 08, 2012 marked it as to-read
Shelves: wishlist
Jen • Just One More Page
Oct 26, 2017 marked it as abandoned
Shelves: abandoned-series

DNF somewhere between 5-8%.

I didn’t even make it to my usual abandonment point of 50 pages / 10% in before I gave up on this one. There were too many clichés, too much overexplaining, too much unnatural exposition, too many obvious-to-you-and-yet-not-to-the-MC plot points, and way, way too many “oh you sweet summer child” moments that I just could not put up with. E.G. “I know my boyfriend and I are both dead and we only died at 18 and we’re still together in the afterlife (because of course you
Jessica (The Psychotic Nerd)
I did not finish this book. I made it 137 pages before giving up.

I didn’t dislike this book, but as I was reading I realized that I just didn’t care. There were characters dying, and all I could think about was how many pages I had left. I was curious about learning more about the afterlife, but the focus was mainly on Felicia’s relationship with Neil (and Neil was as interesting as cardboard), and the attacks from the Morati. I admit, that I didn’t remember much from book one, but after readin
Christina (A Reader of Fictions)
For more reviews, Cover Snark and more, visit A Reader of Fictions.

First things first, you should know that Lenore is one of my besties. I know some people make the decision not to officially review books by author friends because of conflict of interest and I totally respect that. Personally, though, I still want to be able to talk about the books I read honestly, so that’s what I’m going to do. Obviously, I love Lenore, but I’m going to endeavor to leave that aside here and share my opinions.
Nov 07, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Remember last January when I reviewed Level 2 and this past summer's review of the novella, The Best Things in Death? Well, the sequel was equally satisfying! What a trip!

This is the first series I've read that's essentially entirely set in the afterlife and I enjoyed every minute of it. The world building was great in Level 2 also known as The Memory of After but it's taken to a whole new level in Chasing Before. It's phenomenal. I mean, afterlife careers? Ha ha, I loved it. I marveled at this
A copy of this novel was provided by Allen and Unwin for review.

It’s official. This is the first book that I have read and am about to review that I did not like. It was not amazing, or really good, or good, or even okay. I did not like this book.

In my review of Level 2 (or The Memory of After as it is known now), I said that I wasn’t a huge fan of Neil and that I didn’t really understand why Felicia was so obsessed with him. If I thought Felicia was obsessed with Neil in Level 2 – oh boy, I
Donna Parker
Jun 12, 2014 rated it really liked it
I’ll sleep when I’m dead.

We’ve seen memes or bumper stickers of this…and of course, for those with insomnia it’s one of limited options. It’s also the opening line of Level 2 now known as The Memory of After, the first book of The Memory Chronicles by Lenore Appelhans @lenoreva (Simon and Schuster). And a chilling thought.

Appelhans’ unusual and complex vision of the afterlife hooked me and I wanted to know more.

The Memory of After and the second in the series, Chasing Before (not out until Augus
**I received this book for free from Edelweiss/Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.**

*Genre* Young Adult Science Fiction
*Rating* 3.0

*My Thoughts*

Chasing Before picks up approximately four months after the end of The Memory of After aka Level 2. Felicia Ward is our protagonist. She presumably died before her 18th birthday, and ended up in Level 2, a place that exists between Earth and He
The dynamics of what it means to be a good or a not good person, what is moral and amoral, what's important in terms of the things we hold on to in our memories and what it is we can make for ourselves in the future = gold.
Linda Joplin
Nov 26, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Quite a story. I kept thinking I would read one more chapter, and then stop for the night; but each chapter ended with a bang and I had to keep reading. Great job, Lenore!
Jan 28, 2018 rated it liked it
Both this book and it's predecessor, The Memory of After, were purchased at the same time, so I felt a sense of obligation in finishing Chasing Before, despite my lukewarm feelings for the first book. I feel as though this second book warmed me up to the series, but I'm still not certain about it. I can't say for sure whether I found the second entry better, or if I had grown accustomed to this world and the main character, Felicia.

I realized early on one of the foibles of writing about the afte
2.5 stars

I start this review with pain in my heart because I wanted to like Chasing Before so badly. I really enjoyed The Memory of After in spite of a few quibbles, and I've met Lenore on multiple occasions. She's awesome! So awesome that she's the one who gave me this audiobook! And sadly, I didn't really like it. I didn't hate it either, but it was just a bit meh.

First off, I shouldn't have listened to this on audio. I should have read it in print. Right away, I realized that Cynthia Holl
This is a good story but I can't help thinking this girl would be so much better dumping the boyfriend. I am not saying go for the guy who keeps telling lies but loves her, but to stay with someone totally disapproving and unreliable as her boyfriend just because sometimes he actually shows affection for her is just too disturbing to accept. This girl is strong; she can stand on her own two feet without the emotional drag the boyfriend keeps pulling.

Next question? Just when is the third book in
Jan 19, 2014 rated it liked it
Shelves: edelweiss, arc, for-review
Originally posted on City of Books

We don’t erase the past. Our triumphs, our failures, our loves, our betrayals – they all provide the clarifying context that makes life more meaningful. Without our roots we might be carried off by the first wayward wind.

But we also need to realize we can fly.

I've got to admit this is the first series where I've seen a blend of dystopian and paranormal. Though Chasing Before focuses more on the paranormal, with the Morati still being a problem even in Level 3. T
Liz at Midnight Bloom Reads
After absolutely enjoying Level 2, now renamed as The Memory of After, I couldn't wait to finally read the sequel, but it pains me to write these next words: Lenore Appelhans's Chasing Before disappointed me. It was like being told to expect fireworks and then being handed a sparkler instead. Still nice and fun, but not nearly as exciting.

Felicia frustrated me in Chasing Before. I could understand why she was so driven to recover her lost memories, but what I hated was just how dependent she was
Maranda Russell
Mar 05, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: ya-fiction
I really enjoyed this short series, but I really wanted Felicia to end up with Julian rather than Neil. I didn't like Neil all that much, too goody-goody while still managing to treat Felicia crappy at the same time. Also hard to believe a guy would be in love with a girl and continually turn her desire to get more intimate down, especially once he found out there was no "Christian" afterlife so to say. Other than that, really liked the books though. Cool vision of the afterlife!
Last year I read and enjoyed Level Two (renamed The Memory of After), so I was excited to be approved for Chasing Before on Edelweiss. And in true Kelley fashion, I whet my appetite for the series with the recent novella, The Best Things in Death, which reminded me of some of the things I really appreciated about this series. So how did Chasing Before measure up?

There were themes I really enjoyed.

This is the only YA book I’ve read so far that really incorporates Christian religion in a way that
Amber at Fall Into Books
Let me start this review by saying that the world-building, descriptions, writing, pacing, and plot were all fantastic. Had it not been for the completely unlikable characters, I would have enjoyed this book immensely. However, reading from Felicia's bratty point of view really ruined things for me. Instead of letting the mysteries unfold and being excited to find out what came next, I found myself sighing and checking to see how many pages I had left before I could end this whinefest and read s ...more
Poor Felicia is not having a very peaceful afterlife. First, there is her battle with the Morati in Level 2. Then, immediately upon her arrival at Level 3, the Morati are back again, as is Julian. There is a lot of internal debate about right and wrong, good versus bad, selfishness versus selflessness. Felicia remains torn between Neil and Julian. In the end, there are still more questions than answers with the added addition of an unsatisfactory feeling that Felicia followed the wrong path. It ...more

Received from the publisher, for free, for review consideration. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Spoiler alert if you haven't read the first book, Level Two/The Memory of After!

“I’m a ticking time bomb. And one day soon everything is going to explode.”

Felicia and Neil have arrived in Level 3 and are supposed to prepare for their divine vocations.

But during Felicia and Neil’s training period, a series of explosions rips through Level
Aug 27, 2013 rated it really liked it
Check out Scott Reads It for reviews, giveaways & more!

I was absolutely dying to read Chasing Before because I am a huge fan of Memory Of After and I devoured that debut a while back. I've been waiting on this book for a while and it was so exciting to finally get to read it. Chasing Before is an interesting sequel that takes focus off Felicia's memories and concerns itself with Felicia and Neil's romance and the Morati more. Once again, I was impressed with the world and story that Lenore has
Nov 10, 2013 rated it really liked it
4.5 stars

Chasing Before is the second book in the Memory Chronicles, and the sequel to Level 2, which was given a new title: The Memory of After. It’s set on Level 3 of the afterlife. Level 2 was like a hive of white with pod and people could view and exchange their memories of their life on Earth. Level 3 is kind of like a collage campus in which people can choose their career path, which includes: Muse, Guardian Angel, Demon Hunter, Spirit Trapper, Healer, Caretaker, and Seraphim Guard.

One thing I really admire about this series is how well Appelhans blends together different genres to create something unique. In the first book, we had a dystopian society set in the afterlife and run by corrupt angels. This installment was lighter on the dystopian element (although I still labeled it as such because the Morati are back and would probably love to return to their dystopian roots). Instead, we get Level 3, which is its own world separate from earth, giving this book a fantasy lea ...more
Apr 29, 2014 rated it it was amazing
4.5 stars

After the whirlwind ending of The Memory of After, my excitement for Chasing Before could not be dampered. I dived in head first and didn't want to put it down until it finished. Delightful every moment, Chasing Before is a book that exceeds all expectations and takes readers on an epic journey that tugs on your heartstrings.

The return of a certain character I adored in book 1 was a nice surprise (though I suspected it would happen all along and really it was just waiting to see when i
Mar 15, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
One word entered my mind upon completion: fantastic. I really liked Lenore Appelhans’ Level 2 (which has since been renamed The Memory of After), so when the opportunity to read the sequel presented itself, I was thrilled. I couldn’t wait to see what was coming next. And this book did not let me down. It’s one of the rare times the second book in the series exceeds my expectations — by far.

Felicia is great. While occasionally I got frustrated with her — her reliance on Neil could get annoying at
Oct 13, 2012 rated it really liked it
NOTE: This review contains spoilers from book one so if you haven't read The Memory of After yet, you might want to refrain from reading this review until you get up to speed.

Now that Felicia Ward has defeated the Morati in Level Two and been reunited with her boyfriend Neil, she is ready to move on to Level Three and begin what she thinks is her long-awaited, peaceful afterlife.

Oh how wrong she is.

Upon arriving in Level Three, Felicia soon discovers that the Mortai have infiltrated this new lev
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Other books in the series

The Memory Chronicles (3 books)
  • Level 2 (The Memory Chronicles, #1)
  • The Best Things in Death (The Memory Chronicles, #1.5)

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