The minute I found out about After the Storm it was immediately added to my to-read list, I enjoyed Waiting for the Storm, and getting the chance to see inside Ella's head, try to understand what she did what she did, was an opportunity that I could not miss. Before I began reading After the Storm I had a few ideas in my head, one of them was that I did not want to like Ella. Her previous actions in waiting for the storm left a lot to be desired, and I know that she was grieving and this is how her grief was portrayed, but she took it far too far and so far above the threshold for what was tolerable and understandable. Within the first few pages of After the Storm everything I thought of Ella was thrown out of the window, and I actually saw this broken person, who had been wandering lost and alone and not knowing exactly hat to do with her life.
Moving to Angel Island means Ella has to start a new school, Ezra and her sister very supportive but Ella is still nervous about this new endeavour. Starting a new school is scary to anyone, but Ella soon realises that her antics over the summer have not escaped the school, and a lot of students already 'know' Ella through rumours. While her new life in school isn't filled with lots of adoring friends, she does form a great friendship with Sadie and River.
River is the son of Ella's counsellor, Mrs Maracle, and I really like his laid back attitude and honest approach towards Ella, openly admitting that her knows about her past but that it doesn't bother him at all.
Sadie was someone who I instantly liked, not only is her dress sense unique, she is an individual, choosing not to follow the crowd and others expectations, but she has a spunky attitude that goes with it perfectly. She is obviously the school outcast but doesn't let it show too much how much it affects her, it's not until later on into the book that we get to see her real feelings and find out why there is so much animosity between Sadie and the school Queen Bee, but also the secret the tries so hard to hide. I love how this duo welcome Ella into their Misfit group and treat her as an equal and as one of them.
At one point in After the Storm, Ella is talking to River about her behaviour after her mothers diagnosis, and he says something that is one of the most sweetest things I have read, and it also touched a nerve with me and is something I have even found myself doing.
It teaches you not to take the people you have left for granted. It knocks your priorities into line, and makes the stupid, petty things seem unimportant. It can mess you up so many ways, bit it makes you stronger too. It makes you want to seize every opportunity and hold onto the things that matter.After the Storm was an emotional read, but with Marie's books you are automatically prepared for lots of tears and have a nice supply of tissues waiting. The candle in jar moment broke my heart, it was such a perfect way for Charlotte and Ella to remember their Mum, I had to stop reading and wait for my tears to stop falling before I could continue. I picked up this book and read through it in one sitting and even once I had finished reading I was hoping for more. After the Storm is another great book from Marie, and a great companion book to Waiting For the Storm, it also comes with one fantastic cover that I fell in love with the minute I saw it.
[Location 1855 of 4486 kindle copy]