The After Girls

The After Girls

by Leah Konen

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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 Facebook 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.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781440561092
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Publication date: 03/18/2013
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 304
Lexile: 620L (what's this?)
File size: 934 KB
Age Range: 14 - 17 Years

About the Author

Leah Konen is a freelance writer living in San Francisco. The After Girls is her first novel. Visit her at

Customer Reviews

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The After Girls 4.1 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 7 reviews.
Ashley-at-Nook-of-Books More than 1 year ago
3.5-4/5 At first I thought this would end up being a book about a friends suicide and very shallow teenage feelings dealing with it, but I ended up being very enchanted with the entire thing. This is not a feel good book. It is about three girls who are best friends. we follow two of these girls when their best friend takes her own life. With each girl we see how they deal with it differently. How their questions and what they need to grieve and accept it are all varying. One just needs to know why and if she could have stopped it. The other also needs to why, but then she takes it to a whole other level. The build up is a little slow, but I love when it all starts to click and the suspense reaches an all time high in the book. I was hooked and had to find out what was going to happen and to see how it all played out. This is also not a romance book. There is a little bit here and there, but it is more about how relationships change, and the growth and acceptance of the two girls, Sydney and Ella. I thought this was a good book. It is sad at times, it leaves you creeped a little at times, and shows you a glimpse at the dealing of loved ones when they deal with a suicide. It you can handle a book that is not a happily ever after. Check this one out.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book was very good and really made me appriciate my life
BlkosinerBookBlog More than 1 year ago
   This definitely was an emotional book about a powerful subject. The After Girls is in 3rd person but gives the perspectives of Syd and Ella. It starts right after their other best friend Astrid kills herself.      As most of you know, this is a subject that is close to my heart because of my dad, and I think that their guilt, anger, and grief is well written and realistic. I connected with them because although everyone grieves differently, I saw myself in them. The feelings of being lost, and most of all questioning. Why did they do it? Why did they leave me? Could I have done anything about it.       My biggest complaint is that I didn't get to know Astrid before. I know that would probably take away from the mystery surrounding her death because if I were in her head then I would know what lead up to it. But getting to know her second hand through Ella and Syd's memories takes away a bit of the heart wrenching element that it didn't quite achieve. Don't get me wrong, their grief was still palpable, I just felt a slight disconnect because I didn't know her.       I also got Syd and Ella confused sometimes. I am really not sure why because they are two way different personalities, I guess there just wasn't that distinct voice that 1st person gives. And all the boys, I got them mixed up at times too, who was a friend, who wasn't, if someone was actually two timing or what. I think that this confusion set in about the same time that I started taking pain meds for my wrenched back, so that is all on me.        The mystery and suspense was good. I figured out most of it a bit before Ella did, but I was in the dark right with her, wondering where these texts and feelings were coming from.        The friendship in this one was good. I loved that theme. Even though it was rightfully strained because of Astrid's death, they still had each other's backs, and helped even when requests bordered on that crazy line.  Bottom Line: Packed with emotion, and suspense. 
MaryAnn_Koopmann More than 1 year ago
The storyline is great, the mystery is thrilling and spooky, and the characters are challenges to be solved. I recommend The After Girls to readers of contemporary young adult fiction. There is romance for the romantics, character growth, and an unforgettable tale of grief that will haunt the reader even after turning the last page. This book kept me on the edge of my seat the whole time. The story line seemed wonderful, and the cover of the book is just gorgeous and really pulled me in. I just had to know more about The After Girl. I chose this book because the book description was very interesting to me. Once I started to read it I couldn't stop. Total amazingness. Couldn't have been a better book! Breathtaking and exciting. You will love this book with action, suspense and romance.
InkandPage More than 1 year ago
Rating: 4 The Low Down: Ella, Sydney and Astrid have been best friends forever. But when Astrid commits suicide after they graduate from high school, Ella and Sydney have different ways of handling the hurt and loss. Ella is determined to find out the why while Sydney believes that nothing good will come from knowing. How could they have let her go? Why didn’t they push and pry and try to get her to open up? It’s because they always believed they’d have another day with her, another year, a lifetime. Ella’s boyfriend, Ben, is worried about her. Then Astrid’s aunt and cousin, Jake, show up to help out at the coffee shop while Astrid’s mother, Grace, takes a breather. Ella has an immediate connection with Jake, someone who knew and loved Astrid and doesn’t mind that it’s all Ella can talk about right now. But is Ella’s closeness to Jake threatening her relationship with Ben? And Sydney’s fear comes to fruition; they start to unravel the mystery surrounding Astrid’s death, discovering secrets and lies and deceptions. Then Ella swears she receives text messages, phone calls and Facebook posts from Astrid. That she sees glimpses of her red hair, her favorite dress. And things are happening at their favorite hideaway, a cabin in the woods, creepy things that can’t be explained. After all, it is where Astrid was found. Is she still there? Best Thang ‘Bout It: I loved the even tenor of this book. Don’t get me wrong; it was heartbreaking, devastating and full of pain. What it wasn’t? Melodramatic. Fake. Depressing. It was written exactly how one would feel in those days after something horrible and unexplainable had happened. Like moving through jello. Like walking around with earplugs in. Like feeling the inevitable “if only I had...” that you feel when you don’t have any of the answers. Trying to make sense of things. How everyone handles tragedy so differently. How you wish you could feel “normal” again. How you wish you’d noticed anything “before.” It’s all real, honest and laid bare: the feeling of being ripped apart, everything changing, about being left behind to deal with the aftermath. There's no "bad guy" or martyr here. And you will need a big hug after you’ve finished reading. The Bottom Line: The Writing King of Difficult Subjects has to be John Green. After reading The After Girls, I would definitely put Ms. Konen in his court. The After Girls by Leah Konen was published today by Merit Press. A free copy of this book was given to Ink and Page in return for an honest review. Big thanks to Merit Press and Leah Konen. Genre: Young Adult Fiction Contemporary Ages: 13 and up Just So You Know: There’s some underage drinking, sexual discussions and profanity.
Catie22 More than 1 year ago
High School is a tumultuous time for most kids.  It is often marked with extreme highs and extreme lows.  Most teen escape relatively unscathed but some choose to make a terrible choice and end their lives.  These individuals leave a huge hole and plenty of questions.  One of the most painful things about a friend or family member's suicide is the guilt that those who are left behind are often faced with.  The After Girls is the story of two girls who spend the last summer of high school mourning their best friends tragic death while trying to piece together what happened and deal with their own guilt.  It deftly explores the grieving processes and pain of those left behind in a way that is both suspenseful and moving.  I'm not going to do my review the way I usually do because my feelings about this book can't be explained with bulleted lists or snarky comments.  Like many people I'm all too familiar with suicide.  Especially when I was in high school, it felt like an ever present shadow at my school.  My junior year two of my classmates took there own lives within a couple of weeks of each other.  One of the girls sat next to me in English,  the other was a friend.  To protect her identity I'm going to refer to her as Beth.  Beth and I were not close friends.  We had some classes together and we were both in drama club.  We hung out rarely but we bonded at the beginning of Junior year over our mutual distaste for a certain girl in our Theater Arts class.  I was in a bad place, I was dealing with the normal hormonal teenage angst as well as some family issues at the time and I wasn't myself.  After a long talk with Beth one day, she turned to me and said "you have a lot to live for, you know".  I don't know why, but those few words made a huge impact on me.  I decided to seek help and Beth and I continued to hang out at school.  Then, one morning, the principle interrupted our drama class.  The news wasn't good.  Beth had killed herself the night before.  No one saw it coming.   She was there one day and gone the next and I didn't know how to deal.  We weren't best friends but she had been there for me when I needed her.  I hadn't.  Now, I know that I couldn't have known what was going on, she didn't tell anyone, but at 17 I felt like I could have done something.  I think that's why this story resonated with me so strongly.  These two girls lose there best friend and are so wracked with guilt that they are willing to do anything to cope.  Ella tries to find out why Astrid killed herself and becomes so obsessed she begins to see things.  Sydney, on the other hand, begins drinking heavily and hanging out with her abhorrent ex to numb the pain.  In the process they start to drive a wedge between their friendship and spiral deeper and deeper out of control.  Konen does a beautiful job of making these characters and their grief intensely realistic.  From the first page the reader feels for each of them and truly cares about the story.  Astrid, the victim, is not who they imagined her to be.  They at once feel betrayed and guilty.  These are such difficult emotions to bring across and it is done perfectly. This is not a book about death though, it is a story of resilience and survival.  It is about being thankful for what we have when we have it and trying our utmost to support and love our friends while we can.  What I most appreciated is that Astrid is not turned in to this glamorized martyr.  She is a girl who had severe issues that were not dealt with.  She chose a permanent solution to a temporary problem and left devastation in her wake.  She is not villainized but she is not left without blame either.  Suicide is always a messy topic for an author but I think that Konen did an amazing job with this book.  I think that this is an important book for anyone who has lost someone to suicide and for teens in general.  I would recommend it across the board.
DarkAngelCT More than 1 year ago
This book starts out where Ella and Sydney are trying to make sense of Astrid's suicide. At this point it's only been a few days since Astrid was found having committed suicide. Ella tries to find out if there were clues her and Sydney were oblivious to that would explain taking her own life. Sydney wants to forget what happened and finds that easier said then done. She finds her relationship with Ella shaky as Ella discovered Astrid and Sydney wasn't there when that happened. Ella also meets Jake Astrid's cousin who works now for Grace Astrid's mom at her coffee shop for the summer while Grace tries to move on from the death of her daughter. Ella and Jake seem to form a relationship based on things about Astrid. This book was incredible in the dedication Ella had with Astrid and trying to find out why she did what she did. It also shows the girls growing up over that same summer and how some families never show their true colors. Definitely a great book for young adults to learn that sometimes you have a greater impact on loved ones than you think you do. Thank you to Merit Press for sharing such a great story with me! Can't wait to see what Ms. Konen comes up with next!