Review: In the After by Demitria Lunetta

June 20, 2013 4 - 4.5 Stars, Aliens, Demitria Lunetta, Dystopia, Post-Apocalyptic, Science Fiction, Sibling Love 6 ★★★★

In the After by Demitria Lunetta
Series: In the After # 1
Published by HarperTeen on June 25, 2013
Genres: Dystopia, Post-Apocalyptic, Science Fiction
Pages: 455
Format: eARC
Source: Publisher
Goodreads
four-stars
They hear the most silent of footsteps.
They are faster than anything you've ever seen.
And They won't stop chasing you...until you are dead.

Amy is watching TV when it happens, when the world is attacked by Them. These vile creatures are rapidly devouring mankind. Most of the population is overtaken, but Amy manages to escape—and even rescue “Baby,” a toddler left behind in the chaos. Marooned in Amy’s house, the girls do everything they can to survive—and avoid Them at all costs.

After years of hiding, they are miraculously rescued and taken to New Hope, a colony of survivors living in a former government research compound. While at first the colony seems like a dream with plenty of food, safety, and shelter, New Hope slowly reveals that it is far from ideal. And Amy soon realizes that unless things change, she’ll lose Baby—and much more.

Rebellious, courageous, and tender, this unforgettable duo will have you on the edge of your seat as you tear through the pulse-pounding narrow escapes and horrifying twists of fate in this thrilling debut from author Demitria Lunetta.
In the After doesn’t waste any time showing the evil nature of the little green men who unfortunately chose our planet to visit.  They use us for a tasty dinner, and soon, there are few survivors.  Amy is one, but her parents were not so lucky.  Amy survives on her own, studying the aliens from the safety of her electrically fenced-in home.  She learns their weaknesses, and she’s able to scavenge for food while evading capture.  She finds and rescues Baby, a stranded toddler, and for the next few years, the two girls survive on their own.  I loved this section of the book.  Even though it’s primarily just Amy and Baby, it was never boring.

I could have happily followed Amy and Baby’s survivalist struggles for the remainder of the book.  Instead, a drastic change of scenery occurs when the pair are rescued and brought to a secure compound populated with other survivors.  For Baby, especially, who has no memories before the invasion, the transition is difficult.  Amy adjusts to this new life a bit more readily, but she quickly realizes that not everyone in New Hope can be trusted.

The use of flashbacks works beautifully in In the After.  Sometimes this technique can seem gimmicky, and in the worst cases, it causes unnecessary confusion.  Here, the time line is straightforward until Amy and Baby are rescued and brought to New Hope.  Soon after, the chapters alternate between time periods, as present-day Amy struggles to fill in mysterious gaps in her memory.  Flashbacks are presented to us at the same time that Amy recalls them, very effectively keeping the reader immersed in Amy’s trauma.

There were a few twists, but none of them were very surprising.  In particular, the “big” one was telegraphed early on when Amy made a very astute observation about the aliens.  This was something that had not occurred to me until she mentioned it, but as soon as she did, the twist became obvious.  Sure, I would have preferred the element of surprise, but it didn’t detract from my enjoyment of this book.

Note – I received an ARC from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

Review posted at Goodreads.

Stephanie

6 Responses to “Review: In the After by Demitria Lunetta”

  1. Kristen Williams

    I loved, loved this book. The first part was just done perfectly to me. I’m glad you liked it Stephanie! The second section was still wonderful but I’m with you and could have stayed with Baby and Amy in survival mode.

  2. Jenn Renee

    great review. I am glad to see the flashbacks work. Sometimes those get confusing in books. Can’t wait to read this book.

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