Dying wasn’t on sixteen-year-old Riley Richardson’s to-do list. And now, not only is she dead, but she’s stuck in a perpetual high school nightmare. Worse still, she’s stuck there with the geekiest, most annoying boy in the history of the world, ever.
In a school where the geeks are popular and just about everything is wrong, Riley has become an outcast. She begins a desperate quest to get back to her perfect life, but her once-perfect life starts to unravel into something not nearly as perfect as she thought it was.
And maybe death isn’t really that bad after all…
Welcome to Afterlife Academy, where horns are the norm, the microwave is more intelligent than the teachers, and the pumpkins have a taste for blood.
Riley Richardson finds herself stood outside the school gates with the biggest geek from her school, a boy called Anthony. Why exactly she is there — and with him — she has no idea, as it wasn’t that long ago that she was in the car being driven by her boyfriend Wade. And why is Anthony even talking to her?
Somehow, their school looks different. For a start, everything is grey. The writing on the sign by the gate keeps changing. A prefect suddenly appears in front of them, and then just as suddenly vanishes again. And then Riley realises — Wade has killed both her and Anthony with his reckless driving. They aren’t at their school — they’re at the Afterlife Academy.
Riley knows she isn’t meant to be at this place. For a start, she doesn’t fit in, and even Anthony is more popular than she is. She needs to get back to her old life in the real world, before the accident happened, and stop Wade from killing her and Anthony.
As a character, Riley is slightly naïve, and definitely self-centred, but comes to realise that her behaviour in the past was very hurtful. And perhaps Wade wasn’t the dream boyfriend she’d thought he was…
The story mainly focuses on how Riley changes as a person, and how ‘life’ after death doesn’t necessarily follow on from the life she used to have. Although she is used to being the centre of attention and surrounded by people who want to be her, or at least want to be her friend, that doesn’t prepare Riley for being the centre of attention in a different way at the Afterlife Academy.
I thought this was a really fun and original idea, and although I don’t normally read many YA books, this has certainly made me think about searching out a few more to try. I really enjoyed it and would recommend it for anyone looking for a fast, fun and original read!
(Free advanced review copy received.)
Today is the launch day of Afterlife Academy — check it out on Amazon!