Life After Theft
by Aprilynne Pike
Genre: YA Paranormal
Format: ARC from Around the World ARC Tours in exchange for my honest review.
Expected Publication: 04.13.13
Midnight Minute: Your average story of boy starts private school, meets a hot ghost who just happens to have been a kleptomaniac. 😉
Moving to a new high school sucks. Especially a rich-kid private school. With uniforms. But nothing is worse than finding out the first girl you meet is dead. And a klepto.
No one can see or hear Kimberlee except Jeff, so–in hopes of bringing an end to the snarkiest haunting in history–he agrees to help her complete her “unfinished business.” But when the enmity between Kimberlee and Jeff’s new crush, Sera, manages to continue posthumously, Jeff wonders if he’s made the right choice.
Clash meets sass in this uproarious modern-day retelling of Baroness Orczy’s The Scarlet Pimpernel.
~ This book has been compared to lots of other books, but for me it’s like a great cross between The Ghost and the Goth and Deadly Cool. But it’s also a little bit deeper than that, because Kimberlee has some major issues.
~ I liked that Jeff’s family is newly riched, that they actually struggled and made some tough decisions in their lives before finding themselves with the means to send their only child to a private school. Not every teen mom is a disaster, despite all evidences to the contrary on Mtv.
~ Jeff is the only one that can see Kimberlee, and I do think there’s a good reason for it. He’s very grounded and moral, and she is none of those things.
~ I was kind of relieved that the big romance is not between Kimberlee and Jeff, because that’s been done to death. Go ahead, groan, it’s bad pun.
~ Private schools are so awesome! This one seems a bit larger than I’m used to though, but I guess it gave our five finger discount ghost Kimberlee that many more people to steal from.
~ Jeff has to read Les Miserables by Victor Hugo for school, which is awesome on two levels- one because it’s Les Miz! And two because it’s about a thief who finds redemption.
~ All the characters had some depth. Their problems weren’t just the typical teen angst of finding a date for prom or passing their mid-terms. Kimberlee isn’t just a thief, she’s a kleptomaniac and her compulsions whilst alive are not brushed over. Also, Sera’s past isn’t pretty, and Jeff’s family isn’t exactly Leave it to Beaver’s modern day successors.
~ Mikhail is a cool name, and I like the nickname Khail. I also really liked his character, and wish there would have been a bit more with him and his secret- which I think is easy to guess- because I think that would have made the book even better.
~ Jeff’s housekeeper is trying to get Jeff’s dad healthy so she makes healthy muffins, but asks Jeff to tell his father that they’re cupcakes. I need this lady in my life!
~ I feel like the character of Langdon, who Kimberlee liked, was under used. I thought he was going to be more of a villain then he was, and felt that he got off too lightly.
~ I like that Sera likes Jeff the way he is, without Kimberlee’s makeover, but I also think it’s a tiny bit insulting that at first she only seems to be dating him because he’s not like her past boyfriends. But… it also felt realistic. And I think I was just expecting to not like Sera, since there was bad blood between her and Kimberlee, but she definitely grew on me. Especially since she rescues Jeff.
~ Jeff and the wrestling team were an awesome addition to Jeff’s attempts to help Kimberlee.
~ The Principal of the school is straight out of Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, what a snobdouche! But he added tension and danger to Jeff’s mission.
~ I was surprised by just how bad Kimberlee had it in for Sera, but you know, a woman scorned and all that.
~ The only problem I had with the book, and it’s a slight one, was that Jeff is agnostic and despite being confronted by a ghost who has unresolved issues on earth, he continues to feel the exact same way throughout the entire book. I’m not surprised that he’s not suddenly going to church, but I was expecting a little more growth there, or to just not have it be a factor at all in the book. But I get that religion in YA books is pretty untouchable unless you’re writing about fallen angels romancing teen girls.
~ The book is funny! So funny and so unputdownable that I had to go back and take notes once I finished, because I didn’t write many down the first time through.
~ I was not expecting this book to be this good, but I really, really liked it. It was unexpected, and even more unexpected, it’s a standalone! God bless you, Ms. Pike! See, authors, it’s totally possible to write a YA Paranormal that doesn’t get stretched out over at least 3 books!
Kimberlee- klepto ghost, not very nice, but can be quite funny.
Serafina- pretty much Jeff’s dream girl, but Sera (thank God for nicknames!) is not just some bitchy high school cheerleader.
Mikhail- Khail, Sera’s hot wrestler brother, he’s got his own reasons to see Kimberlee’s ghost put to rest.
Langdon- he might be one of the view stereotypes in the book, but he plays his role as Cool Rich Kid pretty well.
Halle- Jeff’s car.
Jeff’s Parents- just know that they are cool.
Sera and Khail’s Parents- just know that they are uptight.
Aprilynne Pike does a wonderful job of finding humor without being shallow. I’m going to give her fairy books a try, which is a big step for me since I pretty much avoid fairy books like the plague. Which I guess is a bad comparison, since I actively seek out books about the plague… Hmm, I’ll just say I normally avoid fairy books like I avoid housework.
Author Website | Aprilynne Pike
Life After Theft gets a Midnight Book Rating of: