The Everafter, a standout must-read for anyone

Kristyn DeMaria, Staff Writer

The Everafter’s plot is centered around deceased Madison Stanton, who is soul-conscious in a dark void in the afterlife. Maddy can’t remember anything about her life, or about herself. When she starts to interact with the small objects floating around Is, she starts to piece together who she was before her death – and what caused it. Author Amy Huntley beautifully and intricately creates a story that keeps the reader mesmerized by both normal and paranormal aspects.

The Everafter keeps calling out to me even after the third, fourth and fifth read. If you choose to read this book, I can guarantee you that you’ll feel pulled to re-read it time and time again through a new lens. I really admired how Huntley wrote about Maddy’s friendship with her ex-friend, Tammy, and how their conflicts together shaped both of them as beings pre and post death. After their fallout in middle school, both were left with lifelong questions about each other, and I enjoyed reading their reconciliation in the afterlife.

Maddy’s stubbornness is a soul habit of hers that I could relate to. Throughout the book she finds herself revisiting the same events of her life over and over again. The other characters find this comical (and to a certain extent it is), but I personally think if I were in Maddy’s position I’d do the same thing. I find it hard to let go of little things even now while I’m alive – I can’t imagine wanting to part with my memories after I die, especially after I’ve just remembered them.

I also found myself mildly attached to Gabe, Maddy’s boyfriend: not because he was described as attractive and popular, but because I think I’ve had a Gabe in my life before, who’s so laid back, it feels unusual because you’re used to being uptight; who’s adventurous enough to do what they want, which seems outlandish to you because you let fear hold you back; most importantly, someone who can look past these differences and see you as an equal, and treat you as such. Almost like the yang to my yin. Watching Maddy and Gabe’s relationship progress in the afterlife was one of the conflicts in this book that made me really ponder.

Huntly has written this book in so much detail, but not the kind of detail that overwhelms the reader. Actually, The Everafter is a fairly short and easy read. Huntley sprinkles tiny details in between the lines, the ones that you find when you read the book the second time, and even the third time. When I reread this book, I feel like I’m still uncovering parts of the story, and I love it. She does a fantastic job at keeping you interested, which I feel is difficult for a reader to find in a book and a writer to execute on their own.

Overall, this book should be rewarded with five stars. Never in my life have I been so drawn to a book, but when it comes to The Everafter I become a moth drawn to a flame. If you have any fears about the afterlife or death, you should read this book. It will bring a sense of peace while also providing a great read for those interested in all types of genres.