Review: The Aftermath (Aftermath #1) by Jen Alexander

The Aftermath by Jen Alexander

My rating: 1 of 5 stars
Received: gifted
Publication Date: August 26th 2014
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
POV: 1st person & female
Pacing: fast
Genres & Themes: YA, Dystopian, Science Fiction, Romance.


Sometimes, I dream that I’m someone else.

A girl with dark hair who doesn’t worry about hunger

or thirst or running from flesh-eaters.

In her world, those sorts of things don’t exist.

Since the spring of 2036, when the world changed forever, Claudia and a small clan of survivors have roamed the streets of a very altered Nashville: polluted and desolate, except for the ever-present threat of cannibal Hoarders. Together they must undergo punishing tests of endurance and psychological challenge sometimes with devastating consequences all just to live another day.

With food and water in dwindling supply, and with danger lurking around every corner, no one can be trusted. And as her world starts to make less and less sense, Claudia begins to realize something terrifying: she is just a pawn in some sort of game, and all of her actions are being controlled from afar by a mysterious gamer. So when she meets a maddening and fascinating outsider named Declan, who claims to be a game moderator, she must decide whether to join him in exchange for protection and access to the border.

If they play the game right, they are each other’s best hope for survival and a life beyond the only world Claudia’s ever known: the terrifying live-action game known as The Aftermath.


The Aftermath is a game created for violent teenagers. And so, apparently, it is used as a treatment, cure to abolish such thing or try to.

After reading this book, I am more than sure that this game is not a good solution especially because, of what I understood, when you die in the game, you die in real life too.

Creepy? Scary? Meh.

Excitement was all I felt before picking this book up. You see, for the past couple of weeks, so many bloggers reviewed this and, every time, I got more and more feverish to get my hands on it. Some did include in their reviews that they recommended this to gamers (what I’m not) but, after reading this, I am not sure it would impress those people either.

The biggest problem I had with this story is feeling how the world-building lacked of development and information convincing us that this is a game we shouldn’t forget about and pay attention to, especially to what is happening regarding it.

Indeed, there was a lack of it so my reading experience was pretty dull.

About the main character, Claudia is not a bad one. The problem is that we don’t know much about her—she doesn’t either—and I couldn’t connect with her at all. Didn’t even feel anything when she discovered what a marionette she truly is (because she is being controlled by a gamer: Olivia.)

The secondary characters felt as if they didn’t have a personailty. They weren’t interesting or unique or ones that you’ll somehow remember.

This story is forgettable.

The romance—oh please! It was banal and underdeveloped and unconvincing. And, since we’re at it, predictable. There was no spark or anything that would make us smile or—oh dear God not at all—swoon.

The writing was okay but there was nothing special about it.

To be honest, the only positive things I could find to say about this story is that it’s short enough and fast-paced. For some, that is enough to enjoy a book but I need more. I need substance.

I wouldn’t recommend this because there isn’t much to enjoy about it. Science fiction fans or dystopian ones won’t be satisfied, in my opinion. Good idea but a not-so-great execution.

My review on Goodreads.

30 thoughts on “Review: The Aftermath (Aftermath #1) by Jen Alexander

  1. Too bad the excitement you felt before starting to read The Aftermath didn’t stay for the actual reading 😦 I’ve read some lackluster books lately, too, and it makes me not want to read any books at all for a while *sighs* Maybe I need to pick up a book by a favorite author to get me back into the groove…
    Great review, Lola. I hope your next read will be amazing.


  2. Aw, man. This has been on my most anticipated as soon as I saw the cover and read the synopsis, but your review is now messing with my feelings XD Considering this is a sci-fi/dystopian, boring should be the forbidden adjective. I am sorry you didn’t enjoy this D:


  3. I know one star reviews sometimes appeal to people and make them want to read it but not me. I don’t like wasting my time like that when I know there is a four or five star book just waiting for me. 😉


  4. Most of the reviews that I’ve read for this book have been fairly positive, so thanks for offering a different perspective. It’s always good to get both sides of the story. There’s a reader for every novel, and many of your cons are my pros which means that I’ll probably still give Aftermath a go… eventually. That being said, I appreciate your honest feedback!


  5. I’m sorry you had another bad book. Rotten luck. It sounds promising too, but you need more than a good idea. Characters are what really make it or break it for me, if I care then I’ll keep reading, but if I don’t reading becomes a struggle. I’m glad it was fast paced enough though. Thanks for the warning.


  6. Hmm the synopsis sure does get your attention though! Thanks for sharing your opinion Lola, I’m sort of a gamer so I wonder if I’d enjoy it. I probably won’t spend money on it though, to the library we go!

    Amber Elise @Du Livre


  7. Awh! Sorry to hear that this didn’t work for you. It does sound interesting, though. A game for violent teenagers, finding out she’s being controlled,… very Big Brother, lol. Oh, well. Great review!


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