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Afterwards Paperback – June 1, 2011
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Grace Covy is an ordinary 39 year old mother of two children. Grace has a loving relationship with her husband and is devoted to her children. She has a part-time job, however, does not feel she has been as successful in her career, as she might have wished. In a split second, Grace's world changes dramatically, while visiting during sports day at her children's private school. Jenny, her beautiful 17 year old daughter, is the on-site nurse for the day, and is inside the school when the catastrophic fire starts. Without a moments hesitation, Grace runs into the building to save her daughter.
Both mother and daughter sustain life-threatening injuries and are in a coma in the hospital. Similar to the movie "Ghost" and the book "The Lovely Bones" mother/daughter come to realize, they can leave their bodies and move freely around and talk, but only with each other. No, they are not dead, perhaps relegated to that place in-between life and death where one awaits their fate. During this out of body experience, Grace learns that the school fire was not an accident, but an act of arson. Grace also learns that Jenny may still be in danger.
The secondary characters are as vividly drawn as Grace and Jennifer. Grace's well-known husband Mike, works for the BBC and has already endured the loss of both of his parents at a young age. Adam their 8 year old son, is a gentle child, who adheres to the rules of gallantry/honor and is called Sir Covey by his family.Read more ›
This is a clever novel, part mystery, part thriller, part story of a mother realizing what her family means to her. The premise of Grace's "spirit" narrating the book takes a little getting used to. At first I thought she was dead, and I was also confused by the fact that the entire book is written as if she is talking to her husband. As a mystery, it works well. There are plenty of red herrings and a couple of genuine twists that you don't see coming. It is terribly drawn out though. The pace could have been quicker and repetitive segments either left out or trimmed. I never felt like giving up on it - I wanted to know how it would come together - but I did find some of the journey tedious. Plus I could see the ending (not the "whodunnit") coming a mile away.
I'm tossing up between 3 and 4 stars. This is a very readable book, but ultimately I didn't feel involved enough in it. I'd recommend it, but I wouldn't classify it a "must read".
You open a novel, whether "Sister" which was purely perfect or "Afterwards", which has flaws I'll get to, and you are moving as fast as you can because she makes you instantly hooked, instantly fascinated. There is some magic in that feat. No matter your mood or time of day or night (I opened this, mistake,to take a look on last Saturday morning and it was 6 PM when I finished losing a day in which I had much to do.)
I cannot yet analyze how Ms.Lupton pulls this off. Usually I can read as a writer but apparently her way with a story just makes me fully immersed without observing what she does that is so compelling.
Even with the flaws here--too many characters, too convoluted as to who did what and when, as to even the villians, IT DID NOT MATTER to me. Anyone who writes in a way that I literally panic if I put the book down for five minutes and then panic when I'm not sure where I left it, has my 5 star vote. I don't know why the author got overly convoluted. Maybe she gets bored if she is not creating massive suspense, but I recommend this not despite its flaws, but because the flaws don't really matter. I know this does not make logical sense but it makes fictional sense. She is just great. Thanks Rosamund for another great read. Keep em coming!!!
The police determine the cause of the fire was arson, in search of the culprit; simultaneously, Grace becomes aware of a continuing threat to Jennifer, the bonds of motherhood more powerful than the frail tethers of life and death. Regardless of the definition of her current state of existence, Grace is infused with a mother's urgency and the determination to protect her family. That Lupton creates this particular scenario- and makes it believable- is a testament to her skill as a writer and her vision in expanding the boundaries of the possible. The pure emotion of a mother in crisis is distilled in the fiery Grace, who will not allow defeat in this most important challenge. Sharing the intimacies of a happy marriage and the rewards of motherhood as the poignant tale unfolds, Lupton's protagonist's spirit is undiminished through incapacity. Rather, she is incandescent with purpose.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This was a great book full of twists and turns. Heartfelt and well written, the Author really captured the spirit of what it means to be a momPublished 3 months ago by S. Moore
I just added another book to my list of favorites, the second book by Rosamund Lupton included in that list. Read morePublished 3 months ago by Beth
I had zero expectations when I borrowed this book from my public library -- it was one of the few available electronically that I could download on my IPad before a trip. Read morePublished 3 months ago by Lachmi Khemlani
Gut wrenching and beautifully written. This story & the characters stay with you for a very long time.Published 3 months ago by Amazon Customer
An intriguing premise executed brilliantly. This is the first of Rosamund Lupton I have read and I will be reading her other works.Published 4 months ago by Amazon Customer
Lupton has done it again. This my second novel from the author and I'm left speechless. There are writers and there are authors--Rosamund Lupton is definitely an author. Read morePublished 5 months ago by Lori Lesko
I didn't anticiate liking this book...I'm not much for any sort of supernatural literary devices. However, this book grabbed me from the get-go and took hold. Read morePublished 6 months ago by Amazon Customer
I read halfway through before I really got caught on to the story. I am glad that I keep p t
I didn't really get into the story until I was halfway through. Read more