First off, I want to send Andye a HUGE thank you for having me here on Reading Teen! I've become quite the regular here on Reading Teen, which is fabulous! But if you haven't seen one of my reviews yet, I'm going to review Afterworlds a little bit different than others. I'll be writing a letter to the book, saying what I did/didn't like, similar to how I normally review on my own blog! Be sure to check out more of my review letters at Pivot Book Reviews!
by Scott Westerfeld
Hardcover: 608 pages
Publisher: Simon Pulse (September 23, 2014)
Goodreads | Amazon
Darcy Patel has put college on hold to publish her teen novel, Afterworlds. With a contract in hand, she arrives in New York City with no apartment, no friends, and all the wrong clothes. But lucky for Darcy, she’s taken under the wings of other seasoned and fledgling writers who help her navigate the city and the world of writing and publishing. Over the course of a year, Darcy finishes her book, faces critique, and falls in love.My Sweet Afterworlds,
Woven into Darcy’s personal story is her novel, Afterworlds, a suspenseful thriller about a teen who slips into the “Afterworld” to survive a terrorist attack. The Afterworld is a place between the living and the dead, and where many unsolved—and terrifying—stories need to be reconciled. Like Darcy, Lizzie too falls in love…until a new threat resurfaces, and her special gifts may not be enough to protect those she cares about most.
Phew. Let me just say that I've been practically stalking you on goodreads since word of you first came out. Yes, I'm a book stalker, but you see, your author, Scott Westerfeld, is pretty much one of my top favorite authors. Mostly because I discovered one of your relative's series (Uglies) early in the beginning of my reading addiction. I devoured them, and every since, I've waited for another new release from him. One that interested me like you did. Basically, I'm enamored with you. First, it was your synopsis, then your book trailer, and then your cover too?! My expectations for you exceeded high. They were exponential, and I'm more than ecstatic that you delivered. Oh you delivered, alright. Oh, yes. (THANK THE LORD!)
It took me all of two days to devour all 600 pages of you. I couldn't believe my eyes when I saw how thick you were, but after having finished you, I almost wish for more, or another book, or something. You follow the story of Darcy Patel, who wrote a novel in 30 days, and ends up selling it, all while being 18. The dream, right? But not only do you follow Darcy's writing/publishing journey, but also, every other chapter is of the book she wrote, which was such a thrill. I couldn't decide which chapter I wanted to read most, Darcy's or her main character Lizzie's. They were that good.
Lizzie was a fun character! Her first chapter was so freaking good! Not that being caught in a terrorist attack was good, but it was such a pageturner. I HAD to know what happened next. Well, she survives only because she pretends to be dead and gets sucked into what's called the Afterworld. Cool, right? And then she meets sort of a grim reaper and more ghosts and so on. So much action & creepiness! Then Darcy. Darcy was the epitome of careless and ignorant of important things (like her budget), but to me, that's what made her realistic. I was sorta careless when I was eighteen too, but I couldn't imagine moving to New York to live the 'being published' dream at that age. I probably would've made the same mistakes. Yeah, I was dumb, but I was young, just like Darcy. I loved reading all about the publishing process, and how Darcy balanced everything between her writing and her real life.
I think you, Afterworlds, will appeal to the majority of people because you're a mash up of genres. Like contemporary? Or paranormal? Well, Afterworlds, you have both, both of which were especially well-written and 'had the juice.' You know what happens when books have the juice, Afterworlds? Well, they get five stars.
Becca @ Pivot Book Reviews!