Wednesday, 10 August 2011

Review of Afterwards by Rosamund Lupton

As abysmal as Sister was readable. For a start, the protagonists are bloody angels or spirits or something, telling the story (too dull to precis here, but it's about who was responsible for burning a public school down - good riddance to it, I say) whilst their corporeal selves lie comatose in hospital, having been injured in the blaze. I thought this madness would resolve itself in something satisfyingly realistic, but no, it appears Ms Lupton was happy for her 'spirits' to communicate with each other, follow the police around, go home, do anything really, without apologising for her feeble conceit.

And then there was the teeth-grinding, middle-class smugness of it all. The protagonist's family were all incredible, clever, wonderful, generous, perfect; their saccharine-sweet love for each other deeper than the the deepest ocean, higher than the highest mountain. Yuck. And for a professional scriptwriter, Ms Lupton's dialogue was unforgivably dismal.

It gets worse. For reasons I have yet to fathom, Ms Lupton sees fit to italicise words, phrases, even whole sentences, lest we, her stupid readers, can't work out where to place the emphasis ourselves. More infuriatingly, most of the italicised words didn't merit emphasising.

Sister good, Afterwards appalling. Second book blues. She's blown it with me."

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