What can I say about this book that hasn't been said a hundred times over? I came late to this party, just a little over a week before the release of the second book in the series when most others have been anxiously awaiting the book for two years. I can't say that I'm unhappy I've missed the last couple of years of waiting and not knowing what's going to happen; but I do wish that I'd read this so much sooner than I have.
Penryn is a refreshing character in the young-adult genre - a genre that I tired of long ago, with it's twittering, helpless females and annoying love-triangles. Afterfall is nothing like those. Penryn is smart and capable and brave. Not perfect, not at all, but she's more than able to take care of herself; in fact she has the weight of caring for her family on her throughout the book as well. As I kept reading I found more and more to love about Penryn, more and more to make me root for her.
Raffe, whom it's not hard to guess who he is, I simply want more of. The little that we did learn of him I found absolutely fascinating - and I don't want to say too much here for those (few) that haven't read this book. With the events of the end of the book ringing in my head I am really looking forward to seeing what happens with Raffe in World After.
Honestly, the plot is pretty standard fare, the blurb above doesn't seem to offer anything new to the staples that we've all read over the last several years. It doesn't seem like there should be anything at all special about it. And yet, there is. I can't even do it justice.
All I can really say is that if you haven't read this yet, do it. The writing is simple and beautiful, the characters refreshing, the world intriguing - and the second book comes out next week. Stop delaying. I promise it's worth it.