Book Review: The Astonishing Color of After by Emily X.R. Pan

The Astonishing Color of After

The Astonishing Color of After by Emily X.R. Pan

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Emily X.R. Pan’s debut is a lovely, complex addition to modern young adult fiction. It’s rare and special in so many ways–in the fact that it’s magical realism, in its honest and multifaceted sorrow, in its brave statements on family, blame, and the realities of depression. This book changed the way I saw the world while I was reading it. The main character’s visions are immersive to that extent, and her way of understanding emotions through color is cool. The novel is a love song to Leigh’s mother, and all mothers who have left the earth to take a different form.

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