Hereafter (Hereafter, #1)

First Lines: It was the same as always, but different from the first time.  It felt as if my sternum was a door into which someone had roughly shoved a key and twisted.

Another ghost story!  I swear, these keep cropping up like vampire novels after Twilight hit the big time.  But each ghost story is different, so I like to read them and figure out if they’re good or not.  And this was good.

All Amelia knows anymore is the world of death and the river in which she drowned.  She doesn’t know how long ago she died; she barely remembered her name and age.  But one night when a boy is about to drown in the same river that took her life, Amelia knows she can’t let him die.  Since she can’t exactly touch him and help him to safety, she can only will him to live.  His survival isn’t the strangest thing that comes of that night; Joshua can see her.  He uses his new ability to help Amelia find her past.  But it’s dangerous.  Eli, another ghost, wants Amelia to be his companion (read: slave) in the netherworld.  And Amelia’s going to fight with everything she has to make sure that doesn’t happen.

I really came to adore Amelia.  She’s so strong, given what’s happened to her.  She’s spent so many years wandering from place to place with no concept of time, wondering who she is.  Suddenly, there’s someone who can see her and hear her and help her.  After that, everything just snowballs around her.  I loved seeing her stubborn streak.

She also had an amazing soft side that only came out around Joshua, which was so sweet.  I loved seeing that blossom with the two of them.  But again, I’m a sucker for loves that seem impossible.

There’s a lot this story offers readers.  Awesome fight sequences.  The mystery surrounding Amelia’s death.  Suspicious characters who may or may not be evil to the core.  And awesome ghost lore (no two books have the same lore, unless they’re in a series, which is obvious).  It was fun to read.

It’s pretty easy to get through.  The pages flew underneath my fingers.  Amelia totally rocks.

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