After by Anna Todd

Anna Todd’s After fanfiction racked up 1 billion reads online and captivated readers across the globe. Experience the Internet’s most talked-about book, now newly revised and expanded, for yourself!
There was the time before Tessa met Hardin, and then there’s everything AFTER…Life will never be the same. #Hessa Tessa is a good girl with a sweet, reliable boyfriend back home. She’s got direction, ambition, and a mother who’s intent on keeping her that way.
But she’s barely moved into her freshman dorm when she runs into Hardin. With his tousled brown hair, cocky British accent, tattoos, and a lip ring, Hardin is undeniably hot! But he’s also rude – to the point of cruelty, even. For all his attitude, Tessa should hate Hardin. And she does – until she finds herself alone with him in his room. Something about his dark mood grabs her, and when they kiss it ignites within her a passion she’s never known before. He’ll call her beautiful, then insist he isn’t the one for her and disappears again and again. Despite the reckless way he treats her,
Tessa feels compelled to dig deeper and find the real Hardin beneath all his lies. He pushes her away again and again, yet every time she pushes back, he only pulls her in deeper. Tessa already has the perfect boyfriend. So why is she trying so hard to overcome her own hurt pride… And Hardin’s prejudice about nice girls like her? Unless…could this be love?
I wish I knew where to start, apart from what I read in the blurb I knew nothing about this story. Then I mentioned After in a tweet and suddenly I’m told that what I’m reading glorifies abuse, features rape and is actually based on One Direction.
Panic set in, how can I do this. It goes against everything I’ve ever read, seriously I’m about to read a book about One Direction.
Now let’s get this out there, I am not a One Direction fan. My knowledge stretches to knowing that the curly haired one dated Caroline Flack. The truth is I don’t care who the characters were originally based around because this book is a work of FICTION.
I feel I need to address the rape and abuse allegations that flit around social media regarding this book. Within the pages of After you‘revRev pulled into a story of love. This isn’t the Disney love story we grew up believing in. But then again we also don’t have genies living in lamps.
What Anna Todd has created is a story of love that’s so consuming, the characters can’t control their emotions. BOTH characters use things against each other and in some cases their love and hate divide walks a very fine line.
There is no glorifying of abuse or rape within the pages of After. Todd has captured the emotions and thoughts of Tessa Young our main protagonist in ways that allow us to see the inner turmoil she experiences.
Tessa is about to embark on a new life at college. leaving behind her mother and boyfriend Noah, But college doesn’t introduce Tessa to like-minded people. instead, she meets roommate Steph, a tattooed party lover who has a whole crowd of friends she is willing to share. One of these being Hardin, a guy who manages to get under Tessa’s skin.
I’m torn on how to describe the characters because I didn’t particularly like Hardin or Tessa. At times they both annoyed me and there are moments where I hated Hardin and everything he did. That said there is a great mix of characters throughout this story, from the manic Molly to the loveable Landon and let’s not forget nice Noah. Despite my lack of love for the characters, I could not put this book down. It was the emotion that drove this book for me. It’s that which has left me desperate to read more.
There are elements of this book that shocked me, facts that disgusted me but hand on heart I loved it. With its short chapters, this 592-page story is definitely a quick read, there was life before this book and then there was everything AFTER!

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