In the Christian fiction romance novel Life After, a bombing of a Chicago train ends the life of 22 people, but inexplicably leaves one alive. Autumn Manning still struggles with the questions of why a year later. Her obsessive need for the people who died to be remembered leads her to revisit their graves, track newspaper articles, and search for photos of their lives. In the unlikely new friend, the young daughter of one of the victims, Autumn finds new purpose: creating a video memorial. In befriending the daughter, Autumn comes to know Paul, her father, and a complicated romance forms between the survivor and the widower.
Life After is a story of finding a way to move on past tragedy with faith as a guiding principle. Author Katie Ganshert does a nice job of weaving God into the heart of the story, but keeping it very natural and unforced.
As a former Chicago resident, I enjoyed hearing about the places that I was familiar with; of course, the premise of the book with the bombing also made it a little difficult at first because I took the train every day to work. It's a scary premise, but it was addressed respectfully in a way that explained the bomber's mental illness and it focuses not on tragedy, but on the hope of the future and healing through God.
The plot was captivating and the characters were well-rounded and a pleasure to get to know through the book. I appreciated the fast pace and various threads of plot that all moved together seamlessly.
I received a free copy of this book, but was not required to post a positive review.