Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Book Review: Hereafter by Tara Hudson

Title: Hereafter
Author:  Tara Hudson
# Of Pages: 416
Publisher: HarperTeen
Publication Date: June 7, 2011
Level: Young Adult
Rating: 3 Hearts


(From Amazon.com)

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.

My Verdict

I can’t really decide how I feel about this book. Did I enjoy it? For the most part, yes. Did I like the characters? Yes. Did I like the plotline? Yup. So why do I have so much hesitation? I don’t know. I just felt like something was missing but I can’t put my finger on it.

This was a traditional good versus evil story with a few twists and turns along the way. Josh and Amelia were both good characters. Amelia is a lost soul who’s been wandering in nonexistence for years, until she meets Josh. She doesn’t remember anything about her life before death and she doesn’t want to. (She does, she’s just scared of what she’ll find). One of the things I really liked about Amelia was that she wouldn’t let anyone else tell her who she was supposed to be. When Josh’s grandma says that she is evil or when Eli tells her that she is fated to become his apprentice and help him drag souls into the underworld Amelia doesn’t listen. She knows deep down that she is not evil like everyone else says she is. She doesn’t want to hurt anyone and she fights till the end to prove that she is different than they say she is. That she is good.

Josh is the only one who can see Amelia (besides his spirit-fighting grandma). Josh would try to ignore Amelia while they were in public, whisper to her or write her notes. But he slipped up a lot. So when he would talk to Amelia at school or kiss her in the middle of the park I couldn’t help but think about the fact that he must have looked insane to anyone normal, but Josh never seemed to think about that.

If you like the whole love at first sight thing you’ll like Amelia and Josh’s relationship. It develops almost instantaneously and progresses at the speed of light. This is a huge downfall in my eyes. I find relationships like this one to be shallow and unbelievable. I like it when an author really takes the time to slowly develop a relationship.

I knew this book was paranormal so I wasn’t really expecting a mystery as well but that it is. Amelia doesn’t remember who she is or even how she died. Did she jump of High Bridge, or did she fall? We slowly find out the answers to these questions along with Amelia. This was probably one of my favorite aspects of the book.

I’m not sure if there is going to be a sequel to this or not. I think I’ve heard rumors of one. I also don’t know if I would bother reading it. 


  1. I enjoyed this book. Interesting review. I also wasn't really expecting a mystery. But i love a good ghost!

    jennifer k.

  2. Sounds like an interesting read. Nice review. Yeah, didn't expect it to be a mystery as well.

  3. I'm torn about this book too. I liked all of the characters but I felt that some things were waay too dramatic. Like I feel that the author said "evil" way too many times.

    Regardless, loved your review!


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