Thursday, August 16, 2012


by Tara Hudson
Read: August 2-6, 2012
Publisher: HarperTeen
Source: Library book
Category: YA

New Orleans
Saint Louis
Number One Cemetery
A night there can change a life . . . or a death.
Increasingly worried that dark spirits will carry out their threats and hurt the people she cares for most, Amelia is ready to try anything to protect them. And for his own very different reasons, Joshua has come to this cemetery at midnight to join her in a powerful ritual.
Both know that once Amelia steps inside the Voodoo circle and the beautiful girl from the Conjure CafÉ begins the cere­mony, everything will change.
Tara Hudson's enthralling sequel to Hereafter escalates the danger and excitement, bringing a new dimension to her already mesmerizing story of a haunted love.

NOTE: Arise is a second book in a series that started with Hereafter. This review contains some SPOILERS for the first book. 

I love Amelia Ashley and Joshua Mayhew. I love that they call each other by their full first names, and frequently throw in their last names as well. There is a gentleness to their relationship that is not typical for a young adult novel (no angst here), and I find it refreshing. Although it is serious in many ways, it also feels very much like first love.

I like that Amelia is beginning to think maturely about her relationship with Joshua. She is a ghost and he is a human, and how would that work in the long term? Should she break it off now or just see what happens? Will the demons that haunted her in Hereafter return? And if they do, how can she protect Joshua and everyone else she loves?

I love that Joshua is certain in his feelings for Amelia, despite the vast differences between them. He never wavers in how he feels for her, and does whatever he can to protect her and them together as a couple. He has an internal strength of character that I really love, although he is just a normal boy in many ways. He has faced some difficult situations since becoming acquainted with Amelia, but is still positive and optimistic in a way that is refreshing for a YA hero.

Despite their differences, these two compliment each other SO WELL.

That doesn’t mean that Amelia and Joshua don’t make mistakes. Most of the problems that they face in Arise are due to their own bad decisions, although both could argue that their poor choices were made with good intentions – and the other in mind. Amelia keeps too much to herself in an effort to keep Joshua safe (also because she fears for their relationship long term). And Joshua doesn’t confront Amelia when he knows she is hiding something from him. They also each take action to protect the other, but without consulting the other about what they are doing. And there are some major consequences because of their decisions, which could have been avoided if they’d only worked together.

Amelia and Joshua are young, learn from their lessons and grow throughout this story. I am excited to see what is in store next for them. I hope we get to see them work together in the future.

There are other people in this book besides our hero and heroine, as well as a new location. We get to see even more of the Mayhew family, and meet some new people like Alex and Gaby (you’ll have to read the book to find out who they are). We also spend some time in New Orleans, which is a great location for a ghost story.

Arise did have some issues with predictability and a few logistical problems that affected my enjoyment of it. I wasn’t surprised at whom the villain turned out to be, or with some of the direction of the plot. And there were inconsistencies in the details of Amelia’s ghostly nature that confused me. 

Despite my issues with some of the story, I really enjoyed Arise – mostly because I love Amelia and Joshua together. And I’m looking forward to the final book Elegy

Rating: 3.5 Stars
Love Triangle Factor: None

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