Afterlife is the fourth and final book in the Evernight series by Claudia Gray. It was published on 3rd March by Harper Collins Children's Books and the book is 364 pages long. Thanks to the publisher for providing a copy for review.
Bianca and Lucas have both become what they feared the most, a wraith and a vampire. The only place left for them to go is back to Evernight Academy but with everyone thinking she is dead, Bianca has to go back and stay under the radar.
All of his life, Lucas has been taught how to hunt and kill vampires but now he is one himself. Evernight cannot turn away a vampire in need of help and although he knows it is the only safe place for him, he has a hard time coming to terms with what he knows he must do. While at Evernight, Lucas is haunted by his own demons as well as some real ones. Bianca is the only one who can help him now but will she be able to before their relationship is destroyed forever.
What I thought
Afterlife carries on exactly from the point where Hourglass ended. I was glad to see the story be so continuous as I was worried that some time would have passed in the timelines between books but I needn't have. The cliff-hanger which Hourglass left us with was amazing and took me breath away a little bit so Afterlife had quite a lot to live up to for me.
One of the aspects of this book which I enjoyed the most was the difficulties that Bianca and Lucas went through. I know that sounds kind of mean but it made for extremely good reading. As I said in the plot summary, both Bianca and Lucas have become the things they hate and feared the most. For Bianca, it was becoming a wraith. Her mother and father are vampires and once she found out what was really going on, it took her quite a while to come to terms with what she was going to be for the rest of her (un dead) life. Now, all of that has changed and she has to deal with being a wraith and only a select few people knowing what really happened to her.
Then there is poor Lucas. Being a member of a vampire hunting group since he was born, killing the thing he has become is the only real thing he has ever known. Now that has all been taken away, Lucas has a lot to deal with. On top of that, his girlfriend died and become a wraith and he isn't sure how to deal with that either. Their relationship was already hard enough before him becoming a vampire and now it is about to get even harder with certain problems standing in their way. I felt really sorry for Lucas throughout the whole book and due to his circumstances, I couldn't see any way for him to finally accept everything that was happening around him for quite some time.
At the same time as all of this going on, things at Evernight are as bad as they have always been. A large part of the plot of Afterlife is dedicated to wraiths and I loved this. There is a lot of mystery surrounding the wraiths at Evernight still and this was something which was explored earlier on in the series. I was extremely glad that Claudia Gray brought back this fantastic idea and I loved where she took it. I wont go into detail about what is happening with this though as it is one of the main big secrets of the story but I will so how exciting and shocking it was at the same time. I really didn't see the outcome happening as it did!
As you can see, there is a lot going on in Afterlife. The beginning of the book is quite slow paced but it soon picks up once Bianca and Lucas realise what they have to do. I really liked the fact that there was always something going on but not always with just Bianca and Lucas. My only negative about this book is the lack of use of secondary characters. They each have their own things going on and I would have liked to have seen these explored a little more. A good thing though is that Balthazar is getting his own book and he has always been a favourite of mine so will be looking forward to getting my hands on a copy when it comes out. At least this way, Evernight isn't completely over.
Afterlife was a great end to a much loved series. Sometimes, there can still be questions roaming around in my head after a series ends but Gray managed to wrap everything up really nicely. Although I do think there could have possibly been more book in this series, I think it was a good choice to end it here. The series would have maybe felt really drawn out for no reason (like House of Night) and other books would have just been published for the sake of it. Afterlife wasn't what I was expecting it to be at all but I still really enjoyed reading the end of Bianca and Lucas' story.