Friday, June 22, 2012

Book Review: Arise

Author: Tara Hudson
Publication Date: June 5, 2012
Publisher: Harper Collins
Series: Hereafter #2

Amelia—still caught between life and death—must fight for every moment of her relationship with the human boy Joshua. They can hardly even kiss without Amelia accidentally dematerializing. Looking for answers, they go to visit some of Joshua’s Seer relatives in New Orleans. But even in a city so famously steeped in the supernatural, Amelia ends up with more questions than answers…and becomes increasingly convinced that she and Joshua can never have a future together. Wandering through the French Quarter, Amelia meets other in-between ghosts, and begins to seriously consider joining them. And then she meets Gabrielle. Somehow, against impossible odds, Gaby has found a way to live a sort of half-life...a half-life for which Amelia would pay any price. Torn between two worlds, Amelia must choose carefully, before the evil spirits of the netherworld choose for her.

I have read so many reviews on this book and have seen so much buzz about it on Twitter that I decided that I had to have a copy of it for myself. I read the first book in the series awhile ago and honestly I did not even realize that this one was being released. A ghost story is definitely a change of scenery from the norm of vampires, werewolves, and zombies; although each of those is wonderful. A ghostly love story just carries a creepy yet cozy premise to it. The cover of the book is gorgeous! I love the white dress and how it stands out against a dreary, gloomy background. There is, what seems to be, a sort of fog that is drifting behind and all around the character on the front cover whom I am assuming is Amelia herself. This gives the book the added eerie feel that it needs to kick off a great ghost story.

The whole idea of a ghost story is fascinating because it is something that I, at least, do not read often. Amelia Ashley is a ghost, and she is a ghost that is in love with a Seer and a mortal. A Seer is someone who works to exorcise ghosts.  Joshua is very much in love with Amelia even if every time he touches her she is magically transported somewhere out of his reach. Amelia is trying to cope with her feelings about this and she is constantly considering how much better off Joshua would be without her. Their love story was enough to keep me reading for more.

The first chapter immediately catches the reader’s attention. I was instantly transported to Amelia’s life and at times it is a sad and miserable one. She is caught between a rock and a hard place when it comes to her life with Joshua and her destiny as a ghost and her future as one. I knew immediately that her situation was too good to be true. She could not forever stay attached to Josh and follow him everywhere that he went throughout his day. It is nice to think about but I knew that it would never last as peacefully as it started out to be.

My favorite part of this book was when Amelia accompanied Josh’s family to New Orleans for a mini vacation to celebrate something like a family reunion. It was very interesting to meet Josh’s family and to find out how interested they were in Amelia. Not to mention, I love New Orleans!! There is so much history and culture that is gathered there and it is the perfect place to write a ghost story. I did not know what to expect when meeting Josh’s family especially knowing that many of them are in fact Seers. Each character had a unique spin and I loved seeing them all react in their own individual way to Josh’s lover being a ghost.

As a ghost and a character, Amelia is fantastic. She is sweet and has a truly genuine spirit. She really has a heart for everyone and tries her best to do what she feels is necessary and best for everyone around her. Plus she takes the whole being dead thing pretty well, not that she has a choice. I really do love her affection for Josh and the true concern that she has for his future. Tara Hudson’s Arise is one that no one should miss. It changes the typical supernatural world for a bit and gives readers a story that is unique when compared to any other.

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