Saturday, June 15, 2013



by S.P. Cloward 

AfterLife, by S. P. Cloward, is the first in a series of books about the Mortui. Even those who hate Science Fiction love AfterLife, an action-packed, fast-paced thriller that crosses genres to grip the imaginations of readers from 16 to 60. Described as "believable fiction," you will find yourself rooting for Wes and AfterLife.
Prior to recorded history, a small genetic mutation occurred that created this race now found among every civilization in every corner of the globe. Unrecognizable to the rest of mankind but dependent upon them for survival, this race is known as Mortui; those whose spirits do not sever from their bodies when they die. They are not zombies, but they are the source of all living dead legends.
“You living beings have an instinctual knowledge of our existence. Why do you think people are afraid to look into the eyes of strangers, or avoid the gazes of those they pass? It comes from an intuitive need to protect yourselves from us."
At the time of his premature death, Wesley Lohmann discovers he belongs to this select group. “You aren’t a zombie. Zombies are bodies without a soul, and such a thing can’t really exist. Your soul still resides in your body; it’s just not a living body as you think of one.” 
Wes joins in the impending conflict between two rival organizations; AfterLife, determined to co-exist symbiotically with humans, and The Atumra, a Mortui organization headed by Seth that focuses on the domination and subjection of the living. 
"Seth remained in his seat, pleased by his successful hunt and reveling in the physical sensations he always felt when he was finished. His victim sat lifeless on the other side of the train and Seth knew it could be hours before anyone realized she was dead. He had looked into her soul and seen her hopes for a rich and full life, yet he had squashed her pathetic dreams and life without a second thought. The image of her body riding the train for hours caused him to smile. He had fed on her in public and not a single person in that car knew he had done it. He truly was the superior species – a Mortui, and thus, a god."
As Wes struggles with new and past relationships and tries to find meaning for his continued existence, he discovers within himself the ability and heart to tip the balance in favor of those who want to deal harmoniously with mankind.

This was yet another review request. I thank you sincerely, Deb Cloward for reading my blog, requesting the review and bringing this lovely read to my attention! 

Oh where to begin? First off, complements to S.P. Cloward for the sheer originality of this book. The idea of Mortui was completely new to me and that kept me interested. The writing was simple and painted the vivid images in your mind. The book was realistic enough that you could relate to it and find the situation to be believable or possible but fictional enough to keep that element that drew the YA fiction audience in to begin with. 

Now I am going to address the problems I had with this book. One problem I had was, that the main character Wesley was rather boring and underdeveloped. He didn't grow much other than a nearly immediate change from depressed to not as soon as he dies. Also, there was nothing bad about him post death, and his post death life was most of the book. He was too perfect, no one is that perfect so, it was very hard to relate to him and connect with him. I felt like this was true with many of the characters throughout the book. Even the antagonists or "bad guys," only instead of being flawless, they only had flaws, there was nothing good about them, again making them unrelatable and unrealistic. The other problem I had was with the pace of the books plot. It was going at a reasonable pace for quite a while then for about the last quarter of the book it suddenly moved at lightning speed and everything important happened in the blink of an eye compared to everything else. 

This book was solid and a good read despite having a few problems in my opinion. I thin that many people would enjoy this book. I would not recomend it for anyone younger than about 12 or so (depending on maturity) just because of some of the things that Wesley did in his depressed state at the beginning. I think that any gender and any age about 12+ years would enjoy this book. I give it a solid 3.5 out of 5 stars.