The prose throughout this novel, is absolutely stunning. It’s a story about loss, but also so much more. And Charlotte tells the story through wit, sarcasm, humour and emotion. There are hilarious bits, and then there are the short sharp chapters that can absolutely floor you. Through this, Charlotte has captured grief perfectly. I loved it for the message that it delivered – hope.
Often, I forget the opening pages of a novel, and I did with this book. So when I started writing this review, I went back and read them again – the ‘two years later/earlier’ part, depending on how you look at it. The before, but the Afterwards. If you finished and didn’t read those pages again, go and do it. I bet you cry like I did. But also feel hope – and that is the beauty of this book. It’s about so much, it’s so hard, it’s harrowing at times, but it’s full of hope.
About the Book
This is the story of loss – and what happens afterwards…
When Emma gets home after work one evening, she calls hello to her husband Jay, as she always does. Stepping into the kitchen, she sees he has done the shopping, as she had reminded him to; remembered to buy peppercorns; has bought her flowers. Everything is neatly put away. But Jay is not there.
A photographer, all Jay has left behind is his camera containing five photographs, which are unlike his other work. Emma follows the images to Cornwall, beginning a journey in which old relationships are re-written and new ones are formed. As the visual mystery of each photograph unfolds, Emma finds herself unravelling and perilously close to breaking point. But could her unlikely salvation lie in the sea, a small community of swimmers and the promise of something Emma thought she didn’t want?
About The Author
Charlotte Leonard is a Writer, Feminist, Mother of Boys and is married to Nils. Afterwards is her debut novel.
Photo by Charlotte Leonard (Twitter)
Purchase the Book
This book can be purchased in our store as part of our May 2023 Book Club Pick.