I received this book for free from Merit Press, Simon Pulse in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

This book may be unsuitable for people under 14 years of age due to its use of language, mental illness, sexual content, drug and alcohol use, and/or violence.
{The After Girls: Leah Konen}The After Girls by Leah Konen
Published by Merit Press, Simon Pulse on April 18, 2013
Genres: Mental Illness, Realistic Fiction, Young Adult
Pages: 304
Format: Hardcover
Source: Merit Press, Simon Pulse
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{Synopsis} – Ella, Astrid, and Sydney were planning the perfect summer after high school graduation. But when Astrid commits suicide in a lonely cabin, the other girls' worlds are shattered. How could their best friend have done this, to herself and to them? They knew everything about Astrid. Shouldn't they have seen this coming? Couldn't they have saved her?

As Ella hunts for the truth, and Sydney tries to dull the pain, a chilling message from Astrid leaves them wondering whether their beloved friend is communicating from the after life. The girls embark on a journey to uncover Astrid's dark secrets. The answers to those questions – questions they never dreamed of asking – will change their lives forever.

{My Thoughts} – “Ella, Astrid, and Sydney were planning the perfect summer after high school graduation.”

Ella and Sydney have a lot going on once they lose their close friend Astrid. Astrid took her own life by swallowing a bunch of pills. It had seemingly caught Ella and Sydney and most of the town by surprise.

Ella had been the one to find Astrid after she had died and it had taken the course of a month or more for her and Sydney and many of their other friends to work through the loss of their close friend. The plans they’d made for their summer were not the plans that had came about.

It is always sad when someone dies, when friendships end. It is always hard to move one when someone so close to you chooses to end their life. It is always difficult to try and understand why that individual would make the choice that they made and not talk about how poorly they were feeling with their closest friends.

This book is about a group of friends learning how to move forward after a terrible loss. Learning how to live their lives while knowing their friend is no longer able to be apart of it. Sometimes things happen that are out of ones control and this is one of those things. Eventually the only choice you have is to move forward and learn to accept what had happened.

I think this book is a wonderfully written book and is worth the read. I think this book is a book that could help teens and others that have lost friends to suicide better understand it, and know that they are not alone, that it happens and that nothing you did or didn’t do could have changed the outcome. This book also shows that its okay to move on.

Final Conclusion: 5 Star Rating.