Review: Aftermath

Three friends go to a concert, but only one of them makes it out alive. One man is found with evidence in the trunk of his car, but he has no idea how it got there. An old friend is called to help prove an innocent man, and find out who really planted the bomb.

After a devastating explosion at a concert/political rally takes the lives of 25 people, Taylor Reid, Dustin Webb, and Jamie Powell will find their lives changed forever and their faith, or lack thereof, tested as they cope with the aftermath. Taylor is reeling with the loss of her friends and not being able to save them, and finds herself going to lengths she never thought herself capable of to make the guilty party pay. Meanwhile, Dustin is being framed for the explosion and calls his childhood friend, Jamie, to represent him… only they haven’t spoken in over fifteen years.

The question is, who was behind the bombing and will they be found in time before an innocent man goes to jail forever… or even more lives are taken?

Wow. Wow. Wow!

Let’s face it, the book had me from the summary, let alone the actual story. The book starts off with Taylor and her friends at the concert, which as it’s turning into a rally for a Presidential candidate, ends in devastation when a bomb goes off. Then we’re lead to Dustin, who’s stopped by the police after getting an anonymous tip, and is arrested for the bombing. In turn, he calls up an old friend, Jamie, to represent him and prove his innocence. 

While Taylor is left with regrets of not helping her friends get out of the concert hall, she spirals into her OCD habits that she’d finally gotten control over, and is obsessed with wanting to catch the person behind the bombing. Her anxiety and paranoia hits an all-time high as her stress levels go up, and she’s a character you feel very sympathetic for, even in her impulsive moments. I feel like I could relate to Taylor in some way, if I were to put myself in her shoes, as I know I’d definitely spiral somehow and blame myself for not doing more to help my friends if I’d been in that situation. 

Then you have Dustin and Jamie, who are old childhood friends, but haven’t spoken in years because Dustin basically dropped off the face of the earth after joining the Army. Dustin has a hard past, which can make it understandable why he’s chosen to be framed for this crime. Only, he’d gotten his act together and found God in the years that he was away, so while he’s being falsely accused, he turns to his Creator to take care of the situation. Meanwhile, he’s also dealing with a close friend (his best friend’s wife) dying from cancer. So it seems like Dustin can’t catch a break. Jamie, on the other hand, will do whatever she can to prove her friend’s innocence, despite his ghosting her, because she knows in her heart that he’s innocent and that it’s the right thing to do. 

What I love about Dustin and Jamie is that they lean on their faith in this time of trouble. For God to lead them to the right answers and how to do the right thing when the right thing will hurt people close to them. I also love how Jamie didn’t even think twice to help her old friend, despite how he just left her in the dust after he’d left town. It’s something I would have done, which is how I related to her character the most, along with her deep-rooted faith from childhood. 

While I was partly right about trying to figure out who was behind the bombing and framed Dustin, I wasn’t completely. The person I suspected was involved, but not in the way I thought. I had the motive right though, so there’s that. But the main part of the story is not so much figuring out whodunnit, but how Dustin’s innocence is proven before his own life is destroyed for good.

This is a book I highly recommend to anyone, Christian or not, who’s looking for a book that will keep you turning the page to find out what happens next.

Rating: 5/5 stars

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