The Afterward by E.K. Johnston | Review

Thank you so much to Penguin Random House for sending me an advanced copy of this book to read and review!


Title: The Afterward

Author: E.K. Johnston


GenresYoung Adult, Fantasy

Release Date: February 19, 2019


It has been a year since the mysterious godsgem cured Cadrium’s king and ushered in what promised to be a new golden age. The heroes who brought the gem home are renowned in story and song, but for two fellows on the quest, peace and prosperity do not come easily.

Apprentice Knight Kalanthe Ironheart wasn’t meant for heroism this early in life, and while she has no intention of giving up the notoriety she has earned, her reputation does not pay her bills. With time running out, Kalanthe may be forced to betray not her kingdom or her friends, but her own heart as she seeks a stable future for herself and those she loves.

Olsa Rhetsdaughter was never meant for heroism at all. Beggar, pick pocket, thief, she lived hand to mouth on the city streets until fortune–or fate–pulled her into Kalanthe’s orbit. And now she’s quite reluctant to leave it. Even more alarmingly, her fame has made her recognizable, which makes her profession difficult, and a choice between poverty and the noose isn’t much of a choice at all.

Both girls think their paths are laid out, but the godsgem isn’t quite done with them and that new golden age isn’t a sure thing yet.

In a tale both sweepingly epic and intensely personal, Kalanthe and Olsa fight to maintain their newfound independence and to find their way back to each other.

My Rating: DNF


Short little review today, because sadly I didn’t enjoy this one as much as I had hoped, but I can see it has a ton of potential for others to love it more than I did.

Often for books I know I will be reviewing I will push through if I feel like I want to DNF, but unfortunately, with The Afterward I really struggled to get through it and I just decided it was for the best to put it down for now and revisit it later. I felt like it was putting me into a bit of a reading slump so, for now, I’m moving on to another ARC!

Everything about this book I expected to love: The characters, the plot, the worldbuilding, the representation etc. etc. etc. but I had found that from the start I was confused. I could not see what direction the story was going and what exactly was happening. I am very hesitant about books with multiple POVs as I’ve had quite a bad track record with them, and this book seemed to be one I didn’t quite like the way the POVs were written and organized. Since I was so lost in the beginning, I found it near impossible to keep reading this as I would just dig myself deeper and deeper into a hole of confusion, and that wouldn’t be beneficial to anyone. The worldbuilding and character development had just started going over my head, and I was going through this book at a snail’s pace.

I will eventually give this another shot, and hopefully I do have a better experience then, but I really wish the beginning of this novel had a bit more explanation and structure. The characters seemed very dynamic. but I felt I couldn’t connect with them or understand their intentions when the narrative and world around them wasn’t piecing together in my mind.

I’d really love to hear other people’s thoughts on this book, so if you have read it let me know what you thought! Also, Let me know if I do need to read this, but for now, it’s going to go back on my shelf until I feel like I can give it more focus and attention!

Thank you SO much for reading! I’ve just started a new book last night that I am LOVING so far, so look out for that review in my next post sometime soon!!

xo Wren

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