Genres: YA Paranormal Romance
Published by HarperTeen on April 30, 2013
Reviewed by: Chris
Moving to a new high school sucks. Especially a rich-kid private school. With uniforms. But nothing is worse than finding out the first girl you meet is dead. And a klepto.
No one can see or hear Kimberlee except Jeff, so--in hopes of bringing an end to the snarkiest haunting in history--he agrees to help her complete her "unfinished business." But when the enmity between Kimberlee and Jeff's new crush, Sera, manages to continue posthumously, Jeff wonders if he's made the right choice.
Clash meets sass in this uproarious modern-day retelling of Baroness Orczy's The Scarlet Pimpernel, by #1 New York Times best-selling author Aprilynne Pike.
After being severely disappointed by the last few YA titles, I started LIFE AFTER THEFT with some trepidation. My worry was unfounded as I found this book to be quite a treat.
LIFE AFTER THEFT is told from the point of view of Jeff (yay, for a male point of view!). He's new to school and all he's worried about is fitting in. On his first day he finds a girl laying on the floor. Being the nice guy sort he asks what's up and to his suprise the girl starts freaking out over the fact he can see her. Poor Jeff thinks he's the butt of some prank, but he quickly finds out that Kimberlee is a ghost. Whoa. We also meet Sera and Khalil. Brothers and sisters who play central role in Jeff's present and in Kimberlee's past. Pike gave each of these character's a distinct voice and all of them felt real. Well, except Kimberlee. Cause, ya know. Ghost.
I found LIFE AFTER THEFT to be an extremely enjoyable read. All of the characters in the book are written very well. Usually when I read a work of YA fiction I find myself spending most of the book rolling my eyes in annoyance. I don't recall doing that once while reading this book. Pike has done a tremendous job of touching on a variety of sensitive subjects such as death, religion, sex, and others. Indeed there's a scene with Jeff and his parents discussing sex that had me cringing in rememberance of the time I got 'the talk' from my own parents.
While it isn't as blatantly paranormal as most of the books we review here (other than Kimberlee there's nothing supernatural), it's an easy book to recommend. Seeing all of the characters grow and change due to their circumstances and choices in the book was heart warming and while the ending is a bit, ah, abrupt, this is the type of YA fiction that I hope my kid is reading.