Darcy Patel has written a book. It’s glorious and original and was written in just thirty days… not that she mentioned that to the publishers who bought her book. Now she has an astonishing amount of money and an edited draft to produce. In Darcy’s mind there’s no better place to do that than New York City. All that’s left is to get her parents to agree to her living on her own in a different city directly after graduating high school.
Lizzie is about to catch a plane when all hell breaks loose in the airport. During the attack, following the advice of a 911 operative, she plays dead and ends up in the afterworld where she meets a gorgeous, mysterious boy… and then suddenly she’s wakes up to find herself the only survivor.
Afterworlds is a book inside a book that just blew me away. Not only do the two stories complement each other really well, you can see the influence that Darcy’s life has had on her novel which provides such a unique and interesting view into an author’s head and their processes. I cannot imagine how difficult it would be to write about an author writing. I bow down to Scott Westerfeld in all his glory. Darcy is such a lovable, awkward character who really transforms throughout the book, dealing with new friendships, romance, living away from home and all of the little quirks of life as a writer (including locking someone in the trunk of their car for “hands on experience”).
Where the writing really shines is in Lizzie’s story. Not only is it a fascinating sci-fi/romance tale in its own right, Westerfeld has really managed to capture the tone of a young female author. Lizzie’s foray into the afterworld has ricocheting consequences into her everyday life. Ghosts are suddenly appearing all around her – there’s even one in her mother’s closet. She can’t really talk to anyone about her experiences but the mysterious boy she met in the afterworld, Yamaraj. On top of that, she’s kind of falling for him.
You get the best of both worlds with this novel and trust me when I say that this is a must read for anyone with a passion for books. No matter what you’re in the mood for, Afterworlds will quench your thirst.