Author: Ann Redisch Stampler
About: Emma is tired of being good. Always the dutiful daughter to an overprotective father, she is the antithesis of her mother — whose name her dad won’t even say out loud. That’s why meeting Siobhan is the best thing that ever happened to her…and the most dangerous. Because Siobhan is fun and alluring and experienced and lives on the edge. In other words, she’s everything Emma is not.
And it may be more than Emma can handle.
Because as intoxicating as her secret life may be, when Emma begins to make her own decisions, Siobhan starts to unravel. It’s more than just Dylan, the boy who comes between them. Their high-stakes pacts are spinning out of control. Elaborate lies become second nature. Loyalties and boundaries are blurred. And it all comes to a head at the infamous Afterparty, where debauchery rages and an intense, inescapable confrontation ends in a plummet from the rooftop…
My Thoughts: I read this book lightning fast – couldn’t get through it fast enough! It’s a great, fast read. By great I mean well-written, interesting, and captivating. It’s like a train wreck – you know it’s not going to end well, but you just can’t look away. You have to see what happens.
Characters … they were interesting. I liked Emma, most of the time. Didn’t like Siobhan much at all, especially not as the story progresses. It’s clear this girl is unstable, at best. My guess? Bipolar. Read the book and you’ll see. What amazed me was just how much Emma put up with. How blind she was to Siobhan’s manipulation and lies. I felt bad for Emma while also wanting to smack sense into her occasionally! LOL Dylan is clearly into Emma from the start, but she’s obviously too insecure to see that. Which is pretty normal for girls her age. When they finally come around, I was rooting for them the whole time, despite everything. And, while a bit more of a minor character, I really liked Megan. She was a great contrast to Siobhan’s crazy.
The lies got old fast, and it was annoying when opportunities to come clean were ignored. I get hiding things from the parents – what kids/teens don’t do that? But, the flat-out lies about pretty much everything in Emma’s life … it was hard to watch things unfold. And what’s with Siobhan and pacts? That was a bit, um, odd? I dunno.
Afterparty by Ann Redisch Stampler is a compelling, crazy story about a lonely girl who finds one friend in her new prep school. Yes, part of what pushes Emma and Siobhan together is a mutual enemy: Chelsea. So, I can see Emma clinging to that friendship. It was a refuge as she learned her way around her new home and school. What unfolds is crazy, wild, and in some ways heartbreaking. Stampler tells a powerful story, and I would highly recommend this to fans of contemporary, realistic YA.
Source: Sent by publisher in exchange for an honest review.
Read It: Afterparty is scheduled for release around January 7, 2014. You can pre-order your own copy HERE. (This is a Book Depository link, and purchase through this link will result in my receiving a small commission at no cost to you. Your support is appreciated!)
FTC Disclosure: All items reviewed were either obtained by me for my own enjoyment or sent (from the author, publisher, publicist, via tour sites, etc.) in exchange for an honest review. I receive no monetary compensation for my posts. All opinions expressed are my own. Any exceptions to this are clearly noted in the appropriate posts.
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