Sunday, June 12, 2011

Paranormal YA Book: "Hereafter" is ghostly love story...

Book Publisher's Summary:

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.

About the Author:

Born and raised in Oklahoma, Tara Hudson graduated with a degree in law, mostly because she believed all the horror stories about English majors and their careers in the food-service industry. Luckily, she soon remembered how much she loved telling ghost stories, particularly to her girlfriends who liked visiting abandoned cemeteries as much as she did. Tara currently lives in Oklahoma with her husband, son, and a menagerie of ill-behaved pets.

My Review:

Beautiful cover, ghostly, isn't it? Another one of those pale girls with long hair and their backs turned to the reader, leaving us to fantasize about how beautiful she is. I like the idea, frankly. Somehow seeing faces makes me feel the book is an old-fashioned romance novel. But, now, seeing this sort of cover gives away the idea of a spirit-driven story. Or, paranormal theme as it were.

Young adult literature is stepping up, and has been in recent years, taking its place in literary circles. It seems to me that we have to give credit to dear Harry Potter for this revival. I'm one of those who cast aspersions on it to begin with but I'm a believer now! Once I dained to read Harry, it was YA lit. for me, forever...

"Hereafter" is a book that reads like a dream. It picks us up immediately and carries us through the horrors of gasping for breath, through the dark waters of drowning, and the fear of sleeping. Chilling.

I enjoyed this book and the idea of a ghostly love story that redeems both the girl and boy who overcome their watery grave and would be grave. Bound in a need to find redemption, these characters are well developed and sympathetic.

Tara Hudson, in this writing of her first book, is an author I was left hoping would write more, very soon. I found her a capable and interesting writer. Her imagination caught me up immediately. Her success at drawing the reader into the life of her characters was done in a seamless and effective way. I was simply captured by Amelia and Joshua...their love, and their commitment to each other as they strive to uncover the mysteries that consume them.  Her sense and reinactment of the ghostly and ethereal is wonderful.

Ms. Hudson's handling of the tension between the couple and the villian who attacks them makes for a novel that brings just the right amount of horror and anxiety to the mix.

This is a beautiful young love story tinged with sadness and light horror... I bought the whole thing without reservations and found it a good, "get away" novel. It will be great for the YA crowd, and their moms will love it, too. In fact, I'm sending my copy along to my 30-something daughter to read!

Another note: The inside of the book smells heavenly. I wonder if HarperTeen is perfuming their paper for the YA crowd? I love the smell of the paper.... Yummy

Please leave me a comment to let me know what you think about the cover and what story it tells about the book before you read the cover summary.

All in all 4 stars for a first time effort. 

Happy reading this week!


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