Hereafter by Tara Hudson

Hardcover, 416 pages
Published June 7th 2011
Hereafter #1
Source: Bought

Can there truly be love after death?
Drifting in the dark waters of a mysterious river, the only thing Amelia knows for sure is that she's dead. With no recollection of her past life—or her actual death—she's trapped alone in a nightmarish existence. All of this changes when she tries to rescue a boy, Joshua, from drowning in her river. As a ghost, she can do nothing but will him to live. Yet in an unforgettable moment of connection, she helps him survive.
Amelia and Joshua grow ever closer as they begin to uncover the strange circumstances of her death and the secrets of the dark river that held her captive for so long. But even while they struggle to keep their bond hidden from the living world, a frightening spirit named Eli is doing everything in his power to destroy their newfound happiness and drag Amelia back into the ghost world . . . forever.
Thrilling and evocative, with moments of pure pleasure, Hereafter is a sensation you won't want to miss.

First things first, as you can see, this cover is GORGEOUS. I promise you, it looks even better in person. The greens and blues and aquas are to "die" for. (No pun intended lol) That in addition to the ghostly girl on the front that's overlooking the lake set the tone for the story. If you can't tell by now, I do indeed judge a book by its cover. I know I shouldn't, but I do. This is the reason I clicked on it to read the blurb on goodreads in the first place.
As for the story, I really enjoyed it. The love story between Josh and Amelia is epic. The only thing I did not like was the "instantaneous" love between them. I like a good fight for love. But the story was still romantic. Even though it opened with Josh's drowning, it DID take me awhile to get into the book (about 2/3 of it), but once I did, I couldn't put it down. The addition of the "evil spirit" was just the pick up the book needed. After that, I was sold.
The thing I most enjoyed was her language and use of detail. The way she described Josh's drowning, his backyard, and their first kiss was amazing. Tara Hudson did a great job to be a debut author! I look forward to reading the next book in the series :)
Overall, I give this **** (4 out of 5)

Sidenote: This book reminded me of an episode of one of my favorite television shows, Supernatural. Season 1, episode 3. If you get a chance, you can check it out on Netflix :)

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