Title: Afterworlds
Author: Scott Westerfeld
Release Date: 09/1/2014

Reviewed by: Emily

I’m a huge Scott Westerfeld fan and when I found out about Afterworlds, I was incredibly excited to read a new story by him in the contemporary fiction genre.

Afterwolds is only sorta a realistic fiction story. Half of it is totally realistic – to a degree – and the other half is pure fantasy. The book is told in alternating chapters between Darcy – a girl living the dream in NYC after landing a $300,000 two-book deal at the age of 18 – and her fictional alter ego from her debut novel, which is about a girl who has a near death experience and meets a Hindu death god.

I loved that this book showed and talked about young adult publishing. YA publishing is where I’d like to work in the future, and YA has been changing at a rapid pace so I loved reading about a debut author’s journey through that world.

With Darcy, I started off wanting to be her, then I hid my face in my hands every few pages because I was cringing at what Darcy was doing – “no Darcy, no bad decisions, oh now I’m embarrassed for you, no follow your budget, good grief” – and then I would flail my hands over how adorable Darcy and Imogen were together. (Actually, I did that all through their relationship. I was in pre-calculus when I read the part where they get together and I couldn’t help the sappy grin on my face. Who knows what my classmates think of me now.) Darcy is my darling, Imogen is my darling, and I love them both.

While the first two chapters of Darcy’s novel were stunning, I wish the novel’s occurrence (or interruption?) had tapered off into shorter snippets. I loved the switches between Darcy talking about and editing her book and then actually getting to read those changes in the story, but closer to the end it started to become distracting from the main story.

In the end, when I put down Afterworlds I couldn’t stop fangirling. If you like any of Scott Westerfeld’s books, I would highly recommend Afterworlds.