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Aftertime (Luna Books) Paperback – February 22, 2011


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Product Details

  • Series: Luna Books (Book 1)
  • Paperback: 384 pages
  • Publisher: Luna; 1 edition (February 22, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0373803362
  • ISBN-13: 978-0373803361
  • Product Dimensions: 8.3 x 5.4 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 10.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (81 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,130,954 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Starred Review. Littlefield (A Bad Day for Pretty) turns what could be just another zombie apocalypse into a thoughtful and entertaining exploration of many themes, including genetic engineering, social collapse, and motherhood. Cass, a young mother and recovering alcoholic, awakens filthy and gashed in the California wilderness, with no memory of the past several weeks. She believes she's eaten a plant that turns its victims into Beaters, or zombies; her recovery is inexplicable. An enigmatic, charismatic man named Smoke agrees to escort her for the last stretch of her journey home to find her daughter, and what begins as a four-mile hike through Beater-infested terrain becomes an odyssey through fragments of civilization devastated by war, plague, and anarchy. Littlefield has a gift for pacing, her adroit and detailed world-building going down easy amid page-turning action and evocative, sensual, harrowing descriptions that bring every paragraph of this thriller to life. (Apr.)
(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

About the Author

Sophie Littlefield grew up in rural Missouri and attended college in Indiana. She worked in technology before having children, and was lucky enough to stay home with them while they were growing up. She writes novels for kids and adults, and lives in Northern California. Visit her online at www.SophieLittlefield.com.

More About the Author

Sophie's first novel, A BAD DAY FOR SORRY, has been nominated for the Edgar, Macavity, Barry, and Crimespree awards, and won the Anthony Award and the RTBookReviews Reviewers Choice Award for Best First Mystery. Her novel AFTERTIME was a finalist for the Goodreads Choice Horror award. GARDEN OF STONES was the Target Book Club selection for March, 2013.

Sophie is the author of:
A BAD DAY FOR SORRY (Minotaur, 2009)
A BAD DAY FOR PRETTY (Minotaur, 2010)
A BAD DAY FOR SCANDAL (Minotaur, 2011)
A BAD DAY FOR MERCY (Minotaur, June 2012)
A BAD DAY FOR ROMANCE (Pocket, September 2013)
BANISHED (Delacorte, 2010)
UNFORSAKEN (Delacorte, 2011)
HANGING BY A THREAD (Delacorte, October, 2012)
AFTERTIME (Harlequin Luna, 2011)
REBIRTH (Harlequin Luna, 2011)
HORIZON (Harlequin Luna, 2012)
BLOOD BOND (Pocket, November 2012)
SHATTERED BOND (Pocket, November 2013)
GARDEN OF STONES (Harlequin MIRA, March 2013)
HOUSE OF GLASS (Harlequin MIRA, March 2014)
THE MISSING PLACE (Gallery, October 2014)

Upcoming titles include:
INFECTED (Delacorte, January, 2015)

Sophie grew up in Missouri, attended Indiana University, and worked in technology before becoming a stay-at-home mom. She lives in Northern California.

Customer Reviews

I read this book fast and it stayed with me.
S. Dargin
I've never been big on zombie or dystopian books, but I have to say I really enjoyed this one.
Wolfy
I loved the characters and the book had nonstop action.
Sandra

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

23 of 24 people found the following review helpful By Ursula K. Raphael TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on July 2, 2011
Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
In Aftertime, the world has undergone tremendous biological warfare, which has severely damaged food supplies, particularly livestock. A genetically designed plant called Kaysev has been introduced as an alternative food source but a mutation known as Blueleaf causes further grief. At first, people are eating Blueleaf for a new high, but the side effects prove deadly. If someone digests the pant, they either die from fever, or become a Beater.

The Beaters -- the infected of Aftertime -- are definitely NOT zombies. They are somewhat like the infected of 28 Days Later (and even that is a stretch), and the Beater strain caused by Blueleaf can be passed on through bites. Beaters retain some minor forms of speech, memory and the capacity to think to a small degree. While most victims of Blueleaf remain in the damaged form of a Beater, continuing to attack healthy people, a few victims recover from the illness.

Cass Dollar, the character providing the POV, is one of the lucky few to survive becoming a beater, but a large chunk of her memory is missing, and she is on a mission to find her young daughter, Ruthie. The last time she saw her daughter was when she was carried off by Beaters.

This book was marketed as a horror novel...and there was barely enough action to qualify it as a thriller. The author, Sophie Littlefield, writes paragraph after paragraph of scenery descriptions; the first eleven pages were mostly landscape descriptions of what Cass was seeing, and I had to read 1/4 into the book before it was even remotely interesting. I had to read 300+ pages before the book finally resembled a horror story...
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17 of 19 people found the following review helpful By S. Dargin VINE VOICE on May 22, 2011
Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
A little bit of everything, zombies, romance, adventure, post apocalyptic, community, relationships, nature, personal growth, and science.

Cass the central character is a young recovering alcoholic who is a store clerk. She had a tough start in life and has a daughter, Ruthie, that her inner and outer world revolves around. She classifies her life into three parts: before, during, and after. The story takes place in the after, the fall of civilization. Leaders are emerging and societies are being built, while most are still just struggling to survive. There are the loners, the groups holed up, the rebuilders, the covenant, and the rebels. I enjoyed this book on many levels. It was a great multifaceted story.

The writing is smooth, beautiful, and spine chilling at times. Its reflective and all told from Cass's point of view. There were some parts that reminded me of a Dean Koontz storytelling style. I read this book fast and it stayed with me. The details make it come alive and seem real. Here's a two examples of some memorable conversations. The first one was with a loner and what he did all day by himself and later a conversation about the prevailing feeling that something is always off and being able to articulate it when hanging clothes out on a clothesline and wishing she had her tins from her house to put the clothespins in.

I was also fascinated by the tidbits on nature. Cass has some knowledge on plants and animals and notices their recovery. It is a story of hope, this one line from the book sums it up, "Earth did what She would; She chose life. ...She seemed unstoppable in her determination to restore health to Her forests and mountains and waters, as every new day seemed to bring a sprig or seedling of some species that was thought to be lost...
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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Leah on August 8, 2011
Format: Paperback
AFTERTIME started out so promisingly: a post-apocalyptic zombie yarn told from the point of view of a promiscuous alcoholic and neglectful parent, a woman struggling to overcome her mistakes and take charge of her life. Yes! Finally, someone is getting back to the roots of zombie survival narratives. This is the voice of a real person, not some over-prepared jarhead whose emotions span a toggle switch between fear and rage, whose wearily stoic introspection is curtailed by guns-'n-gore porn.

Unfortunately, the best part of AFTERTIME is the premise. After the startling opening, the novel quickly gets bogged down in endless backstory and flashbacks. Narrator Cass can't go five minutes without being struck by a memory of Beforetime--what survivors in this world call the pre-zombie days. Some reminiscing is necessary, but pages and pages pass with Cass walking down a street, or brushing her teeth, while absorbed in memories.

There's so much backstory that I wonder if Ms. Littlefield chose the wrong time for her story to begin. AFTERTIME may have fared better as a sequel to BEFORETIME, when Cass could experience the ordeal of losing her young daughter and struggling to reconnect with her in the midst of the unfolding zombie apocalypse. Instead, all the good stuff is in the past, and Littlefield almost seems to sense this by dwelling so much on it.

The book also has a huge problem with info dumping. Littlefield clearly put a lot of work and careful thought into her world-building, but such details should be parceled out sparingly, as relevant to the plot and as needed to heighten the verisimilitude of the fictional world.
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