Happy Fourth of July!
This week, we're doing our first Flashback Friday for Helen Douglas's After Eden. This was my MOST anticipated book last fall, and it definitely didn't disappoint.
Flashback Friday is where we cover books you may have heard of, but may not have read - YET! :)
Hardcover, 288 pages
Published November 5th 2013 by Bloomsbury USA Childrens (first published October 1st 2013)
Format read: Hardcover, purchased
Grounded in a realistic teen world with fascinating sci-fi elements, After Eden is a heart-pounding love triangle that’s perfect for dystopian fans looking for something new to devour.
Eden is a teenaged girl who has lived a relatively sedate life in Cornwall, after suffering from family tragedy early on in life. After meeting Ryan, a boy who is clearly not from America as he claims, Eden is pulled into a situation that she could have never possibly imagined.
Debut author Helen Douglas does fine job of balancing the large-scale science fiction aspects of After Eden - including slightly heady concepts like time travel and intergalactic discoveries - with the unwavering recognition that at the end of the day, this is also still very much a story about a girl's coming-of-age.
Even as Eden is pulled deeper and deeper into her efforts to help Ryan, Douglas never forgets that this is a story about first loves and youthful heartbreak, and she effortlessly balances the magnitude of Eden and Ryan's work, with constant reminders that they are just two people who are experiencing all of the same quiet emotions and feelings of other young people around them.
As Eden and Ryan close in on their final objectives, Douglas also reminds readers throughout the story of the impact of ripple effects, and how one action can inevitably lead to the next. Eden's intelligence and instinctive recognition of that domino effect is put to good use, while also provides readers with a smart, clever heroine to admire.
While the ending does admittedly feel a little abrupt and too neatly tied up at times, it's also a great reminder that life does sometimes just work out in mysterious ways. This sci-fi nerd was utterly satisfied by this read, and is looking forward to whatever else Douglas decides to write.
Even though there aren't any of the usual hi-tech gadgetry or space weapons that appear in so many science fiction novels, I really think that YA sci-fi and regular sci-fi readers will appreciate Douglas's lovely and refreshing approach to the age-old concept of time travel.
I strongly recommend this for YA sci-fi fans, but also for readers who are looking for a romance that is a little more intergalactic than most.
About the author:
After leaving school, I lived in many different places including London, California, New York and New Jersey. I’m now back in Cornwall where I live midway between the woods and the beach. When the sky is clear, I can usually be found walking in the woods, hanging out at the beach or looking at the stars. When the sea mist rolls in or it’s raining, I spend my time reading books, writing and dreaming up my next story.