Death comes, and misery follows. As a man in his early twenties, Leon never genuinely contemplated what would happen after his death. Like those before him, he never understood the truth of our universe. After his sudden demise, the terrorizing reality of a mysterious dystopian afterlife begins crushing him as it has those prior. Men have started enslaving and killing each other to sate their greed while enigmatic creatures oppress the masses. Only a select few have shown the courage that is needed to challenge their supremacy.
Through this eclipsing darkness, there is hope. But will that hope prove to be enough to save this turbulent cosmos? The revelations of advanced science, magic, human savagery, and even our gods will be showcased. Both in a new light and disturbing darkness, will the verities of Earth and Afterworld give Leon a greater understanding of our universe; or in turn, break him as they have done to so many before?
Plot: The life-after-death storyline presented by Robertson is compelling, if somewhat obscure. The reader may find the explanation for this world difficult to comprehend, which can make the rest of the novel challenging to piece together.
Prose: Where Robertson shines is in his descriptions of traumatic events. He is able to take a catastrophic sequence and really pull the reader into it, enmeshing them in the emotions and sensations of the characters.
Originality: The book is highly original, with a storyline unlike anything the reader will likely have seen before. It intermingles Gods, myths, death, Kingdoms, and the modern day. Robertson excels in his creativity and ability to piece together a complex, nuanced world with its own rules and culture.
Character/Execution: The characters are many. Because few are developed thoroughly, they are somewhat difficult for readers to fully empathize with the. Readers may also wish for more meaningful female characters within the framework of the story.
Date Submitted: August 05, 2021
"This story is complex, with multiple systems of nature to consider and fantastically multifaceted characters. James Robertson has managed to create characters that are reflective of humanity, characters completely devoid of it, and the tricky ones in between. Afterworld is the first in a series (Next Life) and it sets a cracking pace for the ongoing story, with terrific action and some pretty graphic detail. The story incorporates philosophical moral discussion without getting weighed down in argument but instead utilizes the outcomes for the plot - leaving the moralizing to the reader. Fans of dystopian fantasy and sci-fi will have something to love here. Mixing elements from different genres works particularly well in this story and applies a macabre logic to the afterlife created by Robertson. A fast-paced and action-packed dystopic sci-fi fantasy, Afterworld is less of an adventure, more of a quest - one you can't help but want to finish."