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  • Celia McMahon

The Astonishing Color of After: review

, 480 pages

Published March 20th 2018 by Little, Brown Books for Young Readers

The writing in this debut novel was just exquisite. This could easily be one of the best book I have read this year.

This story follows Leigh, as she navigates through life with he father and best friend, Axel, after the suicide of her mother. After, she travels to Taiwan to meet her maternal grandparents. Not long after, her father leaves her to unravel the mystery surrounding her family history all while learning her own heritage.

Leigh is an artist and sees the world and everything in it as a color. She also begins to see a strange bird that she believes is her mother trying to communicate with her. As the story progresses, things begin to happen that make you question whether it is real or not. There were times when I feared that Leigh was getting sick (her mother suffered from depression and was the main reason for her suicide).

The message was clear to me, that sometimes there isn’t a reason why someone commits suicide other than succumbing to a hash and unforgiving disease and when Leigh keeps seeing the bird, I felt as though it was saying that her mother was finally free. And that is so heartbreaking.

Basically my heart was put into a vice and squeezed until it stopped beating. Other than the immense sadness I felt reading this book, there was also joy as Leigh traverses the path to love and finding out who she really is. Oh and the food. I was constantly hungry reading this book. I am still really glad I did.

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