Sunday, September 1, 2013

One Day More / Life After Theft by Aprilynne Pike


This captivating and poignant 50-page digital original short story is a prequel to New York Times bestselling author Aprilynne Pike's Life After Theft—a haunting novel about the true cost of paying for one's mistakes.

Most teenagers would do anything to have Kimberlee Schaffer's life. But beneath the beauty, the wealth, and the popularity, Kimberlee has a terrible problem: an uncontrollable, insatiable need to steal. Over the years, she's learned to hide her secret from those closest to her, but now it's completely consuming her life—and Kimberlee is afraid that if she doesn't find a way to put an end to her compulsion, she may see her perfect world come crumbling down.


Moving to a new high school sucks. Especially a rich-kid private school. With uniforms. But nothing is worse than finding out the first girl you meet is dead. And a klepto.

No one can see or hear Kimberlee except Jeff, so--in hopes of bringing an end to the snarkiest haunting in history--he agrees to help her complete her "unfinished business." But when the enmity between Kimberlee and Jeff's new crush, Sera, manages to continue posthumously, Jeff wonders if he's made the right choice.


In a reading slump several years ago, I stumbled upon Wings by Aprilynne Pike. I picked it up because I thought the cover was pretty & I was pleasantly surprised by the story. I was drawn into her faerie world quickly & anxiously awaited the next part of the adventure as each following book was published. When I read that she was releasing the first book in a new series along with a stand-alone book, I was thrilled. Two books in one year! And a novella teasing the stand alone! So, of course, I downloaded One Day More as soon as it was available.

While is isn't absolutely necessary to read One Day More before reading Life After Theft, I would recommend it! One Day More gives a glimpse into the life of Kimberlee Schaffer. Kimberlee is the kind of girl that most girls in high school wish they were...beautiful, rich, & popular. What nobody sees is how unhappy Kimberlee is with her life & how lonely she is. She started stealing as a way to get her parents attention, but now she can't stop.

Kimberlee does come across as a bit of a spoiled princess which makes her a little hard to relate to, but reading One Day More did exactly what it was supposed to do, it introduced me to the characters & made me want to read Life After Theft.

It is hard to review Life After Theft without giving away the end of One Day More so if you want to read the novella unspoiled, please stop reading here!


Where One Day More was Kimberlee's story, Life After Theft is Jeff's. We meet Jeff at the end of One Day More when Kimberlee discovers that she was successful in her attempt to drown & has returned as a ghost haunting the halls of her high school. Day after day passes with people walking through her until the day Jeff arrives at the school & sees her. His life is changed dramatically as he deals with Kimberlee & (after a bit of badgering) agrees to help her with her unfinished business so that she (and he!) can finally rest in peace.

Life After Theft picks up right where One Day More left off.  If you chose not to read the novella, the story will still make sense, but One Day More explains the why of how Kimberlee is the way she is which helped me to understand her motivations more than if I had just picked up Life After Theft on its own.

Kimberlee is the same spoiled princess we met in One Day More, but Jeff is a refreshing contrast. They play off of each other well & I enjoyed the way both characters grow & learn about themselves through the choices they make and their consequences. I really enjoyed the adventure & mishaps that occurred while Jeff tries to deal with Kimberlee & fit in at a new school, as well as the fact that the romantic story line wasn't a love triangle & didn't involve Kimberlee.

After reading the novella, I am glad that Life After Theft was written in Jeff's POV rather than Kimberlee's as he is the more interesting character. However, one thing I did wonder about while reading the book...and sadly am left how Jeff can see Kimberlee & no one else can. We are just asked to accept that fact, and I wish there had been a little more detail. Overall, I really enjoyed the story & all of the characters. We spend most of our time with Jeff & Kimberlee, but we also get to know Jeff's laid back, yet loving parents as well as Sera & Khail who are mysterious yet compelling as their characters unfold.

While Life After Theft didn't feel quite as well thought out as the Wings series, it was a fun story. I love Aprilynne Pike's characters because they feel real...even with the paranormal elements thrown in. They are a mixture of sweet & snarky which makes for a great read. I'm glad I picked up this one & can't wait to read Earthbound!

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