Look at me uploading reviews left, right and centre. I’ve been working a lot lately and I’m still trying to find that balance again now that I am back off of furlough. It has definitely been a tough one. But when I got back to work, my friend kept going on, and on about a book series that “I needed to read” that she has been obsessed with. So, I broke my book buying ban and bought the whole damn series. It is a little out of my comfort zone as I don’t tend to read romance novels but I’ll try any book once. So this is my review for book 1 in the after series. After by Anna Todd.
After is the first book written by Wattpad sensation, Anna Todd. It falls under the genres of Contemporary Romance, Young Adult and New Adult. It was published by Gallery Books in October 2014. The majority of the books in this series are thick, and this is no exception spanning over 500 pages. Here is the synopsis so you can get an idea of the plot:
Tessa is a good girl with a sweet, reliable boyfriend back home. She’s got direction, ambition, and a mother who’s intent on keeping her that way.
But she’s barely moved into her freshman dorm when she runs into Hardin. With his tousled brown hair, cocky British accent, tattoos, and lip ring, Hardin is cute and different from what she’s used to.
But he’s also rude—to the point of cruelty, even. For all his attitude, Tessa should hate Hardin. And she does—until she finds herself alone with him in his room. Something about his dark mood grabs her, and when they kiss it ignites within her a passion she’s never known before.
He’ll call her beautiful, then insist he isn’t the one for her and disappear again and again. Despite the reckless way he treats her, Tessa is compelled to dig deeper and find the real Hardin beneath all his lies. He pushes her away again and again, yet every time she pushes back, he only pulls her in deeper.
Tessa already has the perfect boyfriend. So why is she trying so hard to overcome her own hurt pride and Hardin’s prejudice about nice girls like her?
Unless…could this be love?
Now newly revised and expanded, Anna Todd’s After fanfiction racked up 1 billion reads online and captivated readers across the globe. Experience the Internet’s most talked-about book for yourself!
There was the time before Tessa met Hardin, and then there’s everything AFTER… Life will never be the same.
I will honestly start off by saying, I didn’t think that I would like anything about this book. However, it surprised me. Anna Todd has created a very interesting and complex world in her series that does very well at capturing your attention and igniting an emotional response from its readers. It is a story that doesn’t solicit just one response. You cannot simply root for Hardin and Tessa’s relationship, which you do. It also has you hoping that it fails. Because behind the love there is also toxicity. With so many layers and emotions it is hard to get bored reading this.
I think Anna did a great job creating her characters too, she describes them so well in the book that you almost feel like you’ve seen them before. I feel like the only way of explaining what they look like that could be better is to show you a photograph. I love the details that she includes. For example tattoos. It wasn’t a case of “Hardin has tattoos.” We learn what some of them are, the placement of them, meanings and colours of them. It’s the details that make her writing truly great.
I don’t think this series is going to be my new favourite, and I don’t know if I will reach for it again after I have finished it, but that is mostly because I am just generally not a romance reader. But I think we have to give Anna Todd credit for the fact that she has created something that is interesting and readable to someone who doesn’t read romance. I’m enjoying reading them. That alone shows me that these books are good. I will warn though, there is a lot of sexual references in these books and from time to time, things do get a bit racy. So if like me, that isn’t your cup of tea just read with caution. But to be honest, once you’ve got past the first two sexual scenes you kind of just get used to it. Racy books aren’t typically my cup of tea, but the storyline to these makes it worth it. So even if you don’t like that kind of thing, I’d still recommend giving this one a go.
All in all, I was pleasantly surprised by the first book in this series. So much so that I plan on carrying on with the rest of the series. I definitely would recommend, however, if you are quite young I’d give this one a miss or don’t read without your parent’s permission as it does get quite racy. Just throwing that in there so I don’t get you into trouble. But the storyline is enjoyable, the characters are interesting and likeable and I’m curious to see where the story goes over the next few books.
Star Rating /5