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Afterlife in Harlem: A Novel of Redemption Paperback – October 13, 2014
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An entertaining supernatural soap opera on a political and historical stage.
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Author Terry Mulligan has fun with the characters, making this fantasy light-hearted yet realistic and covering a lot of ground historically. I didn't know much about Alexander Hamilton before. A mysterious prologue is followed by an amusing Chapter 1 which finds Hamilton and Thomas Jefferson arguing about politics, past and present. Bill Clinton's character is perfectly Bill, and his business-friendships with housekeeper Mattie and especially security guy Ray are well developed. Hillary pops into the picture now and then, but mostly she's busy in DC. The author makes this odd relationship between Bill and a ghost work, and I easily entered this fantasy world and enjoyed the conversations, the appealing characters, and watching Alex and Sarafina negotiate the modern world with their old world way of speaking. Sarafina's sad search for a missing part of her life might be a bit confusing, but it is creative. The story moves along slow and steady, no big conflict or excitement, but the scenes are rich, Alex's side adventures add interest rather than distract, and the ending is satisfying. Congratulations to Terry Mulligan on creating this well-written, fun, intelligent, and unusual story. You don't have to be a big Bill and Hillary fan to enjoy this novel idea.
takes her fresh inspiration and winds her way through the near future and the distant past.
We look in on the now "First Gentleman," Bill Clinton. He has a fine mansion in modern day
Harlem adjacent to the historic Hamilton Grange. A celebration of Alexander Hamilton is planned
there soon. Bill still keeps a Harlem office where he goes to count paperclips between urgent phone
calls from his wife, President Hillary.
But Bill is soon visited by an other worldly being in the form of Alexander Hamilton himself,
accompanied by his comely mistress. Fear and confusion ensue before history reveals itself
to us through well researched dialogue. The humanity of the ages shine through as we come to
have a higher sense of respect for these diverse but vital characters who have wrought our history.
Harlem is still a welcoming and friendly place as seen through Mulligan's eyes. The personalities
consume us with their depth and this has been a wonderful reading experience even for this
Afterlife in Harlem will please any reader. It is a must read."
Arlington Nuetzel, author of "The Low January Sun," "Murder in March Commons," "Telephoto," "2027, New Madrid, Missouri," "The Bower Bird and Other Stories," "Remembering Arlie."