Author: Jennifer Mathieu
Reading Level: Young Adult
Released: September 20th 2016
Review Source: Roaring Brook Press
When Caroline's little brother is kidnapped, his subsequent rescue leads to the discovery of Ethan, a teenager who has been living with the kidnapper since he was a young child himself. In the aftermath, Caroline can't help but wonder what Ethan knows about everything that happened to her brother, who is not readjusting well to life at home. And although Ethan is desperate for a friend, he can't see Caroline without experiencing a resurgence of traumatic memories. But after the media circus surrounding the kidnappings departs from their small Texas town, both Caroline and Ethan find that they need a friend--and their best option just might be each other
I knew Afterward was going to be a tough read as soon as the description was revealed. Kidnappings happen everyday and to think that your kid can be taken in an instant is horrifying especially for the parents and the kids who are found and those not found.
Afterward is a story about a girl and guy trying to cope with the aftermath; Dylan and Ethan were kidnapped and now are safely back home. The families are struggling to get back to how things use to be but slowly progress is made.
One of the things I really liked about Afterward was the friendship between Caroline and Ethan. At first I thought Afterward would only involve Caroline using Ethan for help for Dylan but this story is so much more than that; the road to healing is hard but with the help of loved ones everything and anything is possible.
A story like this deserves the most care and Jennifer Mathieu did a great job in handling this topic. The characters took their time healing and figuring things out and I loved that nothing was rushed.
Afterward will be one of those reads that will stay with you forever.