author: Vanessa Barnevald
published: 21 October 2014
publisher: Bloomsbury Spark
genre(s): fantasy, romance
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When the one boy you crushed on in life can't seem to stay away in death, it's hard to be a normal teen when you're a teen paranormal.
Sixteen-year-old Keira Nolan has finally got what she wanted—the captain of the football team in her bedroom. Problem is he’s not in the flesh. He’s a ghost and she’s the only one who can see him.
Keira's determined to do anything to find Jimmy's killer. Even it if means teaming up with his prickly-yet-dangerously-attractive brother, Dan, also Keira's ex-best-friend. Keira finds that her childish crush is fading, but her feelings for Dan are just starting to heat up, and as the story of Jimmy’s murder unfolds, anyone could be a suspect.
This thrilling debut from Vanessa Barneveld crosses over from our world to the next, and brings a whole delightful new meaning to "teen spirit".
This is Your Afterlife is the debut novel from Vanessa Barnevald and I can’t wait to see more from her. I enjoyed the characters and the story line was rather engrossing, although there were moments that were perhaps a little slow in pacing.
There were so many things to like about the main character, Kiera. I love flawed characters, characters not created to be anything more than a real person. That is Kiera. She is not the popular girl. She has made mistakes. She has real problems. That makes her someone I can relate to and understand. Her character is grieving for her recently passed grandmother, something I can all too easily understand. Her grandmother had her own special gifts, gifts that Kiera herself may finally be inheriting.
Dan and Jimmy are brothers and a source of contention for Kiera. The two brothers could not have been more different and the contrast and how Kiera relates to each of them is interesting. In a bittersweet twist, it was death that brought the three of them together in the ways that it did. There was definitely a touch of irony in that.
Even the antagonist, though this is a person that you are predisposed to dislike, was an interesting character. There were some deep issues there and it made for an interesting twist.
This story had a great blend of themes… friendship, betrayal, loss, adjustment, family, love, forgiveness, loyalty, right along with a little bit of humor.
Barnevald’s storytelling is quite nice and this is a story that touches on some very real issues without going overboard with the heavy emotional toll.