Taylor Stone has faced a harsh journey since a plague wiped out the majority of the world’s population. She relies on herself and a baseball bat to deal with any obstacles in her way as she tries to find her lost family. Along the way she encounters a farm full of survivors attempting to create some semblance of a normal life. Among them is Kate, who Taylor finds herself undeniably attracted to despite her desire not to get attached to anyone in this new world. Soon, Taylor is forced to deal with a tragic past and an uncertain future.
After the Fall is a fast-paced, character-driven woman’s life story set in a post-apocalyptic setting. Like many of its post-apocalyptic predecessors, it showcases humans as the worst villains in a world devoid of rules. The novel’s characters are clearly defined as either good or evil, with many of the villains being malicious misogynists. The romance is formulaic but no less compelling when Kate and Taylor finally stop squabbling and admit to their obvious feelings for one another.
In addition to Taylor’s first-person narration, a young man named Duncan also narrates portions of the story in order for the reader to see an outside perspective of Taylor’s journey. The book is moody and bleak, especially in moments when the truth of Taylor’s hardships following the beginning of the apocalypse emerges. Yet the story attempts to be inspirational as Taylor overcomes her past and learns to accept the present.
After the Fall is unique in its placing a lesbian romance story in a post-apocalyptic setting. Unfortunately it suffers from a dragging pace and a clichéd, predictable plot that will not satisfy readers beyond the most obsessive fans of melodrama and lesbian romance. Many of the secondary characters are too onedimensional to create much interest, and Taylor’s disjointed narration is difficult to follow at times. Recommended only for public libraries with an extremely high demand for lesbian romance and/or lesbian women’s life stories.
Reviewer: Tracy Gossage