Kelley Armstrong’s latest YA novel is a gripping, plausible thriller influenced by real school tragedies, but with a twist.
A mass shooting at a high school leaves four dead and 10 injured. Three years later, 16-year-old Skye Gilchrist reluctantly returns to the school that has haunted her dreams ever since. Skye’s brother was one of the shooters, and she shudders when she sees her one-time best friend Jesse Mandal walking down the hall—his brother was one of the victims. Armstrong’s dual narratives highlight two intelligent teens, desperately attempting to pick up the pieces of their broken lives.
After reconciling due to a shared class, the pair begin to search for the truth about the dreaded day that changed their lives forever. Their efforts soon uncover cryptic texts and videos, leading to a mysterious fire and a break-in at Skye’s apartment. Armstrong’s crisp writing is replete with enough foreshadowing, cliffhangers and red herrings to keep readers hooked to the very end.
A fast-paced and unnerving novel, Aftermath is a top-of-the-line read with nothing less than silver-screen potential.