Author: Rosamund Lupton
Genre: Fiction, Mystery
Publisher: Crown (Random House)
Pub. Date: April 24, 2012
Last year, Lupton's book, Sister, received such great acclaim throughout the blogosphere that despite the fact I hadn't yet read my copy sitting on my shelf, I requested to be on the tour for her latest book, Afterwards. I then had to have my tour date extended because I had some really busy days and wasn't able to finish it in time; by then I knew I wasn't liking the book as much as I'd hoped, but once I was really able to devote some time to it, I also realized that, unfortunately, I just plain wasn't interested in where the story was going.
Afterwards takes place almost wholly in the hospital after teaching assistant, Jenny, and her mother, Grace, are hospitalized due to burns they received when the school Jenny was at caught on fire. Grace, at the school for her son, Adam's, sports day, had run into the school when she realized Jenny was still in there. In the hospital, Jenny and Grace have experiences outside their body (a la If I Stay) so they are able to wander the hospital and see/listen to everyone's conversations including learning that police suspect little Adam of setting the fire.
Let me be completely honest... I was reading and reading but eventually I came to the decision that as much time as I had put into the book, I really don't have time nowadays to spend time on a book I'm not into. I was over 200 pages into this book when I decided to just skim the whole rest of the book. As far as I was, I still felt like nothing significant happened and I wasn't sure where it was going. It would have taken me forever to slog through the rest. I have read so many great quotes about this book, so maybe I'm in the minority, but I did not think it was thrilling or suspenseful by any means. And it's not like I need action packed books - I typically enjoy many other literary aspects, but I just found this one lacking. And the narration really bothered me; it is one that you may like for its uniqueness or that may irritate you as it did me. Grace is essentially narrating the whole thing to her husband; it is told in second person, but every single time I picked the book back up it caught me off guard and I'd have to remind myself that Grace was speaking to her husband. But if I were speaking to my husband, I wouldn't talk about a memory and then go back and reiterate every single detail of that memory. I don't know, the narration just didn't work for me. That and the lack of movement in the plot made this not an interesting read for me. It wasn't awful, just really not something that held my interest.
So I was disappointed. I'm not adding this to my list of books read this year because I did skim so much of it. But because her previous book has such a different plot and hopefully a different type of narration, I still plan on giving that one a try.
Monday, April 23rd: Unabridged Chick
Tuesday, April 24th: Colloquium
Thursday, April 26th: A Bookworm’s World
Monday, April 30th: Nomad Reader
Tuesday, May 1st: Great Imaginations
Wednesday, May 2nd: The Picky Girl
Thursday, May 3rd: Indie Reader Houston
Friday, May 4th: Amused by Books
Tuesday, May 8th: Me, My Book, and the Couch
Wednesday, May 9th: Girls Just Reading
Friday, May 11th: Coffee and a Book Chick
Monday, May 14th: Boarding in my Forties
Monday, May 14th: Peeking Between the Pages
Tuesday, May 15th: Into the Hall of Books
Wednesday, May 16th: Melody & Words
Thursday, May 17th: Lit Endeavors
Friday, May 18th: Take Me Away
Date TBD: Books Distilled