Hereafter by Tara Hudson(Goodreads profile)
Release Date: June 7, 2011
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.I don't read many ghost stories at all. The only ones I can actually remember reading are the Darkest Powers trilogy by Kelley Armstrong - if you even count that. Still, I was excited to read Hereafter. The mystery and romance that the summary promises drew me in and I'm a sucker for gorgeous covers like this one.
Thrilling and evocative, with moments of pure pleasure, Hereafter is a sensation you won't want to miss.
Hereafter opens with Amelia thinking of her death. It's sudden, it's spooky, it's dramatic - and I loved it. Amelia is hopelessly lost as to who she is and what will happen to her, so as readers, we get to piece together her old life with her. Besides trying to figure out her past, Amelia does grow into her own throughout the course of the novel. There's nothing I love more than some good character development and I was glad to see that happen with Amelia.
While there are some creepy bits (if you're anything like me, you'll love them), a huge aspect of the story is also the romance between Amelia and Joshua, the first one to actually see Amelia after her death. The chemistry between Amelia and Joshua is apparent as they grow closer, and I loved this sweet, understanding boy. That said, I do almost wish Joshua had been a little less understanding. I mean, you find out this girl you've met is a ghost and that only you can see her... wouldn't you be a little freaked out?! I sure would!
The entire time Amelia and Joshua are trying to get to know each other, darker forces are at work as well. Eli, another ghost, is dead-set on having Amelia for himself and makes no secret of it. Still, it's hard to know how evil he really is, as he switches around at a heart-pounding pace. I liked the break from the classic bad guy act, as I really do think Eli was a well-rounded character with many facets to him.
A tale that is both haunting and sweet, Hereafter attracts your attention and pulls you right in.
Cover Comments: The blue and the yellow make such a pretty combination and I love how Amelia's body appears. Such a gorgeous cover!