"After" is a book that will challenge your sense of morality. It's a book that will draw you in to her heart of a teenaged girl, Devon, who finds herself accused of giving birth to a baby by herself, and then getting rid of it in a dumpster.
With attention to characterization in the finest detail, Amy Efaw gives us memorable moments with Devon, her mother, her attorney, and others. I found myself really resenting the guards, policemen, and prosecutors on her case, having strong feelings about her fellow juvenile offenders, and worries about the judge.
Ms Efaw, if I may be so bold as to make a comparison which I hope is not offensive to her, is a writer much like Jodi Picoult. Not in every way, but in that she calls upon us to put aside our inital reactions to a moral situation, and to walk alongside the perpetrator whether we like it or not...only to consider and make an educated decision about her in the end.
While every case isn't packaged and "right or wrong" we are left with ourselves and our own conclusions, but more enlightened, hopefully. That is one of the rewards of this beautiful book. The other is simply the wonderful writing, descriptions and the look into human frailty.
I highly recommend this book to everyone!