Hello again Dewey Family,
This time I present you with After the Fall by Kate Hart.
This book was wonderful! I really did enjoy it. After the Fall was another book that I could not put down! It was laced with such emotion and it made you feel for the characters (and I don't think that's an easy thing to do!)
NOW, I know what you guys are saying "But Jillian you've been reading books that fall into this category... You reviewed Thirteen Reasons Why *and* The Most Dangerous Place on Earth". Yes yes, I did...this is something that I can not deny.
Side Note: I promise that I am going to review March's #Bookdrop next - Flight of Dreams by Ariel Lawhon. I'm in the process of reading this book
(PSA for our IG! @fortheloveofdewey -- you'll be able to check out all of our current reads here... Or you can look up to your left... Right under all of those tabs...)
After the Fall is Kate Hart's debut novel. Knowing that this was her debut novel and nothing else about the novel didn't satisfy me. I was wanting to know about this book!
SO! I figured that I would start incorporating a little bit of the background information that I find about the authors (if this is a debut novel) or try to find the inspiration the novel (if it's posted within the vast internet) -- wish me luck, this may be a failed idea. haha.
With my trusty curiosity in hand, I searched the internet high and low in hopes to find Hart's inspiration...
My searching did pay off! I was able to find an interview with Ms. Hart from 2010 on the blog We Do Write, you can view the interview here. In her interview with Dorothy from We Do Write, Kate said that her inspiration for After the Fall came from a "local hiking accident" - that sparked her to wonder how she and her friends would have been able to handle the same situation. It wasn't until I finished the book that in the final pages that Hart mentions how her own assault and the loss of a friend influenced her book.
(Wandering Bark Books had an interesting Q&A with Hart as well - you can find how she handled the love triangle that is in the book. You can read that Q&A here).
On to the book...
After the Fall follows Raychel Sanders and Matt Riachardson, two best friends since forever. Matt secretly likes Raychel and Raychel is secretly dating Matt's younger brother, Andrew.
As the reader, you can really feel for Raychel. You feel for her when you hear how she's been assaulted by Carson (not once but *twice*). You feel for her when she thought that maybe Carson did actually like her for her and not for anything else like the rumors that follow her. You feel for her again, when she learns who her mother is dating and when she gets into a big fight with Matt; resulting in massive disappointment. A horrible hiking accident happens causing life as Raychel and Matt know it falls apart. Life will never be the same for either of them and neither will be their friendship.
If you don't want to know what happens... DON'T READ PAST THIS LINE!!
I don't want to ruin anything for those of you who do want to read the book.
I felt bad for Raychel. I did. No one deserves to be assaulted. No one deserves to be taken advantage of like that. To lose that sense of trust and security. To be stripped down and to be made to feel so vulnerable. That's wrong in every possible way. As I wrote before, it broke my heart to read that her character was happy that there someone out there who was interested in her for her and not because of the rumors about her. To me, that's heartbreaking.
But (I know I shouldn't start a sentence with "but") Raychel did start to irritate me when she was (for lack of a better term) "sneaking around" with Andrew. I thought that was really crappy of her character. This guy has been your friend for (what's mentioned in the book) the better part of a decade, and you go and start dating his brother without saying anything to him! That's really crappy! I'm sorry guys. Matt genuinely cared about Raychel (even though we could see that his character was quite overbearing) and I think that's why it bothered me so much that she didn't say anything to him until everything started to fall apart.
To me, it seemed like Raychel's relationship with Andrew seemed a little out of left field. I didn't find it to be very developed- it just kind of happened. I didn't even really get the vibe that she was crushing on him until she borrowed his shirt.
Carson's assault on Raychel was a formative part of the book (IMO) but it seemed to have died off... Then the reader hears about Carson again, when Raychel takes her "revenge" on him (if you can even say that) and when he apologizes. Part 2 had a whole different focus -I felt that that was a little strange.
I was sad at the end of the book. I guess I wanted Raychel and Matt to see past their differences and to come together once again. I didn't want to see them end. They had been friends for so long, that it was sad to seem them continue to drift apart.
As the saying goes: all good things must come to an end...
After the Fall gets a review of four (4) coffee beans out of five (5).