What I'm Reading: Get Even by Gretchen McNeil

Friday, July 5, 2013

Life After Theft by Aprilynne Pike

I wasn't the biggest fan of Aprilynne Pike's fairy series (Wings). I read the first and didn't bother to read the others. But when I saw that she was coming out with this new story, a ghost story, I thought I'd check it out. When I found it on audible, I thought I might have better luck with a new Aprilynne Pike book as an AB, so that's how I decided to experience this one.
Here's the summary from Goodreads: Kimberlee Schaffer may be drop-dead gorgeous . . . but she also dropped dead last year. Now she needs Jeff's help with her unfinished business, and she's not taking no for an answer. When she was alive, Kimberlee wasn't just a mean girl; she was also a complete kleptomaniac. So if Jeff wants to avoid being haunted until graduation, he'll have to help her return all of the stolen items. But Jeff soon discovers that it's much easier to steal something than it is to bring it back. Paying for your mistakes takes on a whole new meaning in this hauntingly clever twist on The Scarlet Pimpernel.

Now, I haven't read The Scarlet Pimpernel, though I have a copy of it on my shelf. Maybe I'll give it a read and see if I can make the connection!

What I Liked: 1) Jeff. Poor guy. Can't help but feel sorry for the male MC because not only is he the new kid at prestigious prep school Whitestone, but he's being haunted by the popular and MEAN girl who died last year, Kimberlee Schaffer. Jeff already feels as if he doesn't fit in with the students at his new school, who've always had money. But with Kimberlee following him around and making it look like he's talking to himself, it makes him even more of a freak. So I felt so sorry for the kid. But he was a great example of a teenage guy, IMO. He wasn't too mature (which rarely happens) and he wasn't too immature (which happens a lot), he was just right (and my name is Goldilocks). But seriously, he was funny, and very realistic, so it's easy for the reader to feel connected and empathize with different parts of his story. 2) Kimberlee. Ahahaha, classic mean girl. I mean, in every sense of the word. She was so stereotypical that it should have been annoying. But it just made her situation funnier. At some points of the story I was forced to wonder if she was even learning the error of her ways. But she was well developed, and it was easy to understand what she was all about. 3) The plot. Usually, when the characters are strong, the plot takes a backseat, at least for me. But that wasn't the case in this book. The plot was enhanced by the presence of the characters. It was interesting, and each chapter end left me curious for the next. It was fairly straightforward, no big twists or turns, and that was refreshing for me. 4) The narrator. Because this was an audiobook, I need to give some props to narrator Jesse Bernstein for bringing this story to life in the way that he did. It helped me to really see the story happen.

What I Didn't Like: Parts of the story moved too slow for me. Maybe I'm spoiled because I've been reading a lot of action-packed stuff recently, but there were definitely some times that I thought the story needed a shot of caffeine to keep going.

Overall Thoughts: Aprilynne Pike's new one shot, Life After Theft is a funny story with some outstanding characters and a plot that complements them well. The humor was well done, if a little over done in a few places, and the narrator definitely did the story justice. There were parts of the story that seemed to drag a little, but I enjoyed this a lot more than I did her first series.

My Rating: 4 shots

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