Review: The Afterlife of Holly Chase

On Christmas Eve five years ago, seventeen-year-old Holly Chase was visited by three Ghosts who showed her how selfish and spoiled she’d become. They tried to convince her to mend her ways. She didn’t. And then she died.

Now she’s stuck working for the top-secret company Project Scrooge—as their latest Ghost of Christmas Past. So far, Holly’s afterlife has been miserable. But this year’s Scrooge is different. This year’s Scrooge might change everything…

The Afterlife of Holly Chase is a witty, poignant, and insightful novel about life, love, and seizing second (or third) chances, perfect for readers who loved Before I Fall or Dash & Lily’s Book of Dares.

Dickens, how I love thee. One of my all time favorite novelists, so frequently shunned by my demographic for his rather tedious wordage and drawn out plots. In the trend of retellings, Dicken’s has been left behind. Which is why I FREAKED when I saw this little beauty had been released, and picked it up just in time for a Christmas read—best choice EVER.

So, as I meantioned, this is kind of a Christmas Carol retelling. Not quite in the traditional sense, but it was a kind of modern spin off. It was exceptionally creative, thought provoking, and captivating. Like, seriously, it made me want to reread every Dicken novel ever. The story telling was the perfect blend of allusions and new plot. 

In this story, we have some really imaginative story telling. I’ll try not to give any spoilers, but the plot centers around a group who find a ‘Scrooge’ every year that they try to save. The group is made up of ghosts who have been sentenced to save others after the failed to repent (having been former Scrooge’s themselves). I loved how this plot and the characters served to be a back story to the original A Christmas Carol, all the while standing in its own as a novel.

The writing was witty, sarcastic, and refreshing all at once. Featuring a rather fed up heroine, we see a mission of repentance with a moral that ‘everyone and their actions causes a ripple effect.’ As I said, in the style of Dicken’s original novel, this book managed to give some really intriguing moral lessons, all the while providing a captivating plot, and a bit of holiday festivities.

Overall, I think this is the perfect holiday read. Whether or not you enjoy Dicken’s, this novel is the perfect story to read this time of year. My appreciation of Dicken’s made me like this novel even more than I would’ve anyways, but it’s definitely worth picking up even if you don’t enjoy classic literature. In the style of The Strange Case of the Alchemist’s Daughter, this story presented classic literature to an entirely new audience, in a way that opens up the genre for young adults. This is definitely one of my favorite novels of 2017.

4.5 out of 5 stars.


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