Books for Teens · Fantasy Fiction

On the Other Side by Carrie Hope Fletcher.

“You were my single greatest adventure.”

I finally got around to reading this book at long last. In doing so, I had also tried to keep away from spoilers as much as possible. By going in plot-blind, I knew that my feelings towards the book would be genuine.

For what its worth, I didn’t quite know what to expect with Carrie’s second foray into writing (although her first fiction book); her first book having been an advice book for teens. On the Other Side is a good book, although I felt at times as if I was slightly too old for the target audience of the book – I’m nearly 22. However, I didn’t let this put me off reading the book and read it within the space of a day or so.

The characters seemed to be based quite strongly on people familiar to Carrie and familiar to the Hopefuls (write what you know, I guess?). It’s excusable for a first fiction novel, anyway.

While I did not fall head over heels with the love story of Evie and Vincent, I felt that the theme of having to let go of negative emotions accrued in life is a theme which can resonate with everybody no matter how old or young they are. The book itself was quite enchanting, and blended fantasy themes with the romance thread so its something more than just the typical romance story with two main protagonists. It also deals with LGBTQ themes too.

I’m not too sure if this book is supposed to have a singular historical time period in particular. This gets put on the back burner as the fantasy / magical realism themes take precedence and I suppose it doesn’t really matter all that much. I thought the character of Little One the dove was quite endearing, and his involvement in the story was rather sweet.

So, while I did not fall head over heels with this book, it was a quick read and enjoyable. If you are slightly younger and looking for a book to be your first foray into romance / magical realism / fantasy, then this is the book for you. The book’s main theme about the personal heaven is explored in a similar way with the Mitch Albom book The Five People You Meet In Heaven.

MY RATING: *** / *****

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