THE AFTERLIFE by Gary Soto

THE AFTERLIFE

Age Range: 12 & up

KIRKUS REVIEW

Seventeen-year-old Chuy dies in the opening scene of this view from beyond; thereafter the story is told by his ghost, “invisible and touchable as light.” Stabbed three times after commenting on a guy’s yellow shoes in the restroom of Club Estrella, Chuy never gets to dance with his friend Rachel. Instead, “like a balloon in the wind,” he floats around town observing the life he’s left. He meets and falls in love with Crystal, who has committed suicide, helps a dead homeless man, flies in formation with some geese, and even takes in a Raiders game. Chuy realizes that he’ll soon be heading for the afterlife but is grateful for the life he had. The ghosts offer no inside information on the big questions: Do we come back? Does heaven exist? How does the Almighty decide who lives and dies? Soto writes with a touch as light as Chuy’s ghost and with humor, wonderment, and a generosity toward life. (Fiction. 12+)

Pub Date: Sept. 1st, 2003
ISBN: 0-15-204774-3
Page count: 176pp
Publisher: Harcourt
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 15th, 2003




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