Arise (Hereafter, #2)

First Lines: The entire world had gone dark, and I had no idea why.  No matter how widely I opened my eyes, no matter how many times I craned my neck or spun around in search of even on speck of light, I found none.  There was nothing but thick, impenetrable darkness.

Out of the 5 books I picked up at the library for this winter’s break, this was the last one I got around to reading.  I didn’t read it sooner because well, I kind of forgot what happened in the last book.  So I waited, thinking that maybe like, I’d have a sudden burst of genius and remember it.  (I didn’t.)

*Potential Spoilers Ahead if you haven’t read book 1*

Darkness lurks behind every corner for Amelia.  She’s terrified that the demons will be back, and this time not just for her but the ones she loves as well.  Especially Joshua.  And she’ll do whatever she has to to protect them.  Which takes her to New Orleans and, more specifically, a cemetery with a Voodoo circle and a pretty girl who will do what she can to Amelia to help.  Once Amelia steps into that circle, things will change.  But will that change be for the better or worse?

Even though I only remembered bits and pieces from the last book, this one does a pretty good job of including catch-me-up details to remind you of what was important last time.  Which I kind of needed.  And was banking on being here.

Mostly, I thought this was a pretty interesting read.  I mean, a ghost story in New Orleans?  Yes, please!  It’s like the U.S. epicenter of everything dark and creepy.  Anything can happen there.  It surprises no one to hear ghost stories coming out of there.  So it made sense to set the story there.  I admit, I was a bit worried about taking the story out of its original setting, since a lot of books have been trying that lately, but it worked out.

What I really like most though is Amelia herself.  She’s that heroine that you get the distinct feeling from that she doesn’t want to be a leader.  She never meant to be different from others.  She never wanted to become someone others look up to.  I think that’s what makes her a good heroine.  It’s a little rare to find that strong a conviction from a heroine.  Even like, Katniss I’d say, she embraces the leadership powers she has even though she didn’t want it either.  Does that make any sense?

I thought the first half of the book was a bit slow, especially from my standpoint of not remembering what happened before.  It was a lot of introductions to new characters and reintroductions to those I probably should have remembered.  But the second half really took off, with some cool action and an awesome ending.

I guess one thing I have to raise an eyebrow at is the quickness of some of the friendships I spotted in this story.  I didn’t question it while I was reading but the moment I stopped to reflect I went, “Wait a minute.  They’re legit BFFs and they just met yesterday?  What?”  Unless you’re in like, kindergarten, I don’t think that happens much in real life.

Overall, it’s a really good read with lots of action, ghosts, New Orleans lore, and great characters.


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