Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Book Review: Afterworlds by Scott Westerfeld

Afterworlds is a very different book than usual (not sure he really has a "usual") from Scott Westerfeld, and while I love some of his other books, I didn't enjoy this one as much.

There are two stories in alternating chapters. Darcy is a teen author who has just sold her first book for a lot of money. She decides to forgo college and move to New York to work on the edits for her book and write the second book in the series. She meets a lot of famous authors, begins a romantic relationship, and experiences all the ups and downs of the publishing industry.

Meanwhile, we get the story of Lizzie, in Afterworlds, the novel that Darcy has sold. It's a paranormal story where the main character survives a terrorist attack, but is changed forever. She can now visit the Afterworld, where the dead and the live meet. She also experiences some romance and some danger as she learns the rules of this place and tries to reconcile this new existence with her own life in the real world.

I enjoyed Darcy's story a lot. And I understand why we need to know what happens in her book, but I really didn't like the novel. It didn't illicit any emotional response from me. I never felt any tension or connection with the characters. Maybe because I knew it was a "novel." I found myself just wishing to get back to Darcy's story.

I appreciate the unique way Westerfeld created this story. I'm a huge Westerfeld fan; the Leviathan series being among my favorites of all time. It took me about 5 or 6 days to finish Afterworlds. The fact that it's over 600 pages didn't help. But,this is unheard of for me, but I found myself easily finding other things to do besides read. I think that is telling.

Afterworlds is well written, just not my thing. I think it is worth the time just because it's different. And if anyone, especially teens, are interested in publishing, they will definitely be interested in Darcy's experiences.

Published by Simon Pulse, September 23, 2014
Copy obtained from Edelweiss
608 pages

Rating: 3/5

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  1. I was really curious about this one and had no idea that it was this big! I ordered it for the library so hopefully I'll be able to read it soon, maybe for Winter Break. I wonder how the students are going to react to this one.

  2. Based on all the reviews I've read I'm not sure if this is going to be my thing either. I prefer his sci-fi/dystopian books. Lovely honest review!


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