Riley Bloom left her sister, Ever, in the world of the living and crossed the bridge into the afterlife—a place called Here, where time is always Now. Riley and her dog, Buttercup, have been reunited with her parents and are just settling into a nice, relaxing death when she's summoned before The Council. They let her in on a secret—the afterlife isn't just an eternity of leisure; Riley has to work. She's been assigned a job, Soul Catcher, and a teacher, Bodhi, a curious boy she can't quite figure out.
Riley, Bodhi, and Buttercup return to earth for her first assignment, a Radiant Boy who's been haunting a castle in England for centuries. Many Soul Catchers have tried to get him to cross the bridge and failed. But he's never met Riley...
This book is a fun MG read. It is told completely from a first person POV. Even though she has no contact with Ever, it is Riley's own story learning her place and purpose in this after-life. She is spunky, a bit bratty, and finds herself in the end a bit wiser than she thought she could become. Buttercup is adorable and although Bodhi is a bit one dimensional (probably due to seeing him through only on POV) he is interesting enough to see where the story takes him.
The beginning of the story is a big slow, but really picks up in the middle of the book. At the end, you are met with Riley's epiphanies and the book feels complete with only being 178 pages. You do get a teaser with the next book, but I warn you... you will be left wondering or demanding what happens next if you read the excerpt.
I give this book 4 stars. Remember this is a MG read and those that are expecting YA might be disappointed. This book is to be published Aug. 31.
I'd like to thank Square Fish/Macmillan Publishing for this ARC. No compensation for my review was given.
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