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The Afterlife

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Most Helpful Favorable Review

1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

The Afterlife was written by Gary Sotto and was published by Har

The Afterlife was written by Gary Sotto and was published by Hartcourt Inc. in 2003. The subject of the book is how Chuy, the main character, dies and turns into a ghost. He is able to go where ever he wants and no one can see or hear him. He travels around town and vis...
The Afterlife was written by Gary Sotto and was published by Hartcourt Inc. in 2003. The subject of the book is how Chuy, the main character, dies and turns into a ghost. He is able to go where ever he wants and no one can see or hear him. He travels around town and visits his friends and family. Of course, they are all sad and mourning his death.
Chuy discovers more and more things about himself being a ghost. The wind will blow him away unless he does certain things, like bracing himself. This is the only way he controls where he goes while he is outside. He can touch things, like pens or paper. He can pick them up, open things and move things. He can reach inside of a person and feel inside them. He can breathe on something and make it freeze with the coldness of death. He uses these qualities to effect people's lives that are still living.
Before Chuy died, he was at a club where he was going to have some fun with his friends. He was in the restroom and complimented a guy's yellow shoes. Next thing he knew, Chuy was looking down at his own body that had been stabbed lifeless. He now goes throughout his town as a ghost. He visits his parents, friends, brother, and cousin. He watches how their lives change without him and also finds Yellow Shoes.
I found this book very interesting and I really enjoyed it. I like it because it made me wonder if you actually turn into a ghost once you die. I loved reading about how Chuy followed his family and I wondered if he could talk to or meet any other ghosts like him. A quote from the book says, “"You dent my ride and I'll kill you!" he threatened with a mean smile., and maybe he meant it. But someone else had killed me first, the guy in the yellow shoes…” He had a good life, and then it was taken away after he was killed. But after a while he began to have fun in the afterlife. “I drifted out onto the field. Who was there to stop me?” I like the book because even though he has lost his life, he has fun with what he has. He goes to football games and stands in the middle of the field and lets the players run straight through him. He enjoys everything he can.
Throughout the book Gary Soto added Spanish words. Some I already knew, but there were a lot that I didn’t know as well. A few of the words I learned are the following: cara, which means face; chavalo, which means child; hijole, which means wow; and sapo, which means toad. There were many others, too. I also learned that weather or not you are alive, you should still enjoy yourself and have fun while you can.
I would recommend this book to anyone thirteen or older. Young children shouldn’t read it because the very first few pages are about how Chuy is killed. It is a pretty easy book to read and the story is great. It is well written and I think that anyone will enjoy The Afterlife.

posted by erb16 on December 1, 2013

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Most Helpful Critical Review

4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

The Afterlife

The afterlife is a beautifully written book with a touching storyline. Its about Chuy, a seventeen year old boy in Fresno,California. Chuy is at a nightclub and he goes to the bathroom. Briefly after complimenting a man about his yellow shoes the man stabs him three ti...
The afterlife is a beautifully written book with a touching storyline. Its about Chuy, a seventeen year old boy in Fresno,California. Chuy is at a nightclub and he goes to the bathroom. Briefly after complimenting a man about his yellow shoes the man stabs him three times in the ribs, leaving Chuy left for dead. After his death is discovered Chuy checks up on his girlfriend(well his ex now...),his mother and is soon surprised to see his mother handing his cousin a knife asking him for revenge on behalf of her son. Chuy scrambles to find a way to communicate with his cousin to tell him not to do it.To Chuys relief his cousin hands back the knife. Chuy goes on an adventure not even knowing it. He soon finds his lady ghost and finds the true meaning of life,in death. A beautifully written book by far one of the most touching books I have ever read.Please rate this review, Thank you!

posted by TeenReaderIL on January 15, 2009

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  • Posted December 1, 2013

    The Afterlife was written by Gary Sotto and was published by Har

    The Afterlife was written by Gary Sotto and was published by Hartcourt Inc. in 2003. The subject of the book is how Chuy, the main character, dies and turns into a ghost. He is able to go where ever he wants and no one can see or hear him. He travels around town and visits his friends and family. Of course, they are all sad and mourning his death.
    Chuy discovers more and more things about himself being a ghost. The wind will blow him away unless he does certain things, like bracing himself. This is the only way he controls where he goes while he is outside. He can touch things, like pens or paper. He can pick them up, open things and move things. He can reach inside of a person and feel inside them. He can breathe on something and make it freeze with the coldness of death. He uses these qualities to effect people's lives that are still living.
    Before Chuy died, he was at a club where he was going to have some fun with his friends. He was in the restroom and complimented a guy's yellow shoes. Next thing he knew, Chuy was looking down at his own body that had been stabbed lifeless. He now goes throughout his town as a ghost. He visits his parents, friends, brother, and cousin. He watches how their lives change without him and also finds Yellow Shoes.
    I found this book very interesting and I really enjoyed it. I like it because it made me wonder if you actually turn into a ghost once you die. I loved reading about how Chuy followed his family and I wondered if he could talk to or meet any other ghosts like him. A quote from the book says, “"You dent my ride and I'll kill you!" he threatened with a mean smile., and maybe he meant it. But someone else had killed me first, the guy in the yellow shoes…” He had a good life, and then it was taken away after he was killed. But after a while he began to have fun in the afterlife. “I drifted out onto the field. Who was there to stop me?” I like the book because even though he has lost his life, he has fun with what he has. He goes to football games and stands in the middle of the field and lets the players run straight through him. He enjoys everything he can.
    Throughout the book Gary Soto added Spanish words. Some I already knew, but there were a lot that I didn’t know as well. A few of the words I learned are the following: cara, which means face; chavalo, which means child; hijole, which means wow; and sapo, which means toad. There were many others, too. I also learned that weather or not you are alive, you should still enjoy yourself and have fun while you can.
    I would recommend this book to anyone thirteen or older. Young children shouldn’t read it because the very first few pages are about how Chuy is killed. It is a pretty easy book to read and the story is great. It is well written and I think that anyone will enjoy The Afterlife.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 29, 2010

    A Diffrent Kind Of Story...

    The Afterlife written by Gary Soto and published by Harcourt inc., shows two different perspectives of Chuy's life; life and death. The theme of the book is that one should cherish the life they have today and make the best of it because you never know when it will end. For some people death is the beginning of another life...the afterlife. It shows the reader that dying is the end of life, but may be the start of a new one. Gary Soto shows us what the afterlife might be like and he also incorporates some humor into his novel. Gary introduces three main characters that eventually become ghosts. First there is Chuy, a not so attractive 17 year old. He was always second in track, and wasn't tall enough for the basketball team. He found himself to never be the best in anything. However, Chuy was nice, a good student, and loved his friends and family. Crystal, another unfortunate victim of death, meets Chuy in the afterlife. She is amazingly beautiful and has gorgeous brown hair. Crystal had two boyfriends, Eric and Jason, who were both pretty boys. She was popular and well loved; never rejected. Robert Montgomery, a homeless man spending his nights on the streets that died because of a fever, also meets Chuy and Crystal in the afterlife. Robert was an older man who had spent his younger years at three or four foster homes and once used to be a painter. Robert never really knew where home was, but he was born in Fresno where the events take place. One night Chuy goes out to Club Estrella with his friend Rachel, a girl he really likes. When he goes to the bathroom he meets a man with some cool yellow shoes that he compliments him on, and without warning is stabbed multiple times in the ribs. His ghost is then stripped from his body and he sees his body dead on the bathroom floor. Chuy starts to float around, go through walls and visits his loved ones. Chuy describes his experience as a ghost as not having the ability to speak to the living. He can only float through things and send a cold chill so that they may sense his presence. Chuy makes it a mission to understand why he was killed. He comes across the guy in yellow shoes who had stabbed him, and witnesses his unfortunate lifestyle and all the trouble he has been through, going to get into and causes. Chuy meets another ghost, Crystal. He finds out that she had killed herself by taking too many pills because she didn't think she was going to make it big in life and had felt rejected. The two fall in love with each other and things seem to be looking better to Chuy in the afterlife than they did in his previous life. Even though he never understood why he had been murdered, he did discover love. Crystal visits her parents and regrets taking her life. Meanwhile, Chuy meets Robert Montgomery and they become ghostly friends. They both run into Yellow Shoes, who Chuy learns has the same name that he does; Chuy, on a bus and Robert goes into Yellow Shoes' body to try to get him to do better things in his life. I liked the book because it shows the reader to never take life for granted and when it ends the afterlife is like a second perspective on life. The characters had regrets and wished that they could go back and change things in their previous lives, but it's too late! I found that it did get slow at times, but I enjoyed the Spanish words that were used, even though some weren't appropriate. It gets people thinking about what "life" could be like after death. I recommend this b

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 26, 2014

    The novel the Afterlife by Gary Soto was published by Hartcourt

    The novel the Afterlife by Gary Soto was published by Hartcourt Inc. in 2003. It is an upsetting story about
     a boy named Chuy who goes through the afterlife after being stabbed. Shortly after he gets stabbed
     he turns into his ghost and learns that nobody can hear nor see him but can only feel his presence.  
    Chuy visits his family and friends to find them very upset over the tragedy of his sudden death.The night Chuy died he complimented a boy on his yellow sneakers not knowing that he was going to
     strike him in the back three times. Chuy wonders in the afterlife why he had stabbed him he had not
    even known him. In Chuy’s afterlife he see’s the boy who had killed him and follows him.
    The boy walks down an alley and drops the knife that he killed him with it.
    Chuy follows him home and finds out the boy’s named was Chuy also. He begins to hate his name.
    When the boy with yellow sneakers comes home to find a man ready to beat him up for something he did.
     Chuy gets bored and leaves.Chuy along the way finds another ghost who is named Crystal who is
    beautiful too him. He explains how everything works and has been trying to find out why she is dead
     because she doesn't want to tell him. When they are going to her house they find a homeless man who
    is very sick with a fever and is dying. He tried to help him by cooling him town with his touch. I loved this book it sends a very powerful message. It teaches people to cherish the moment.
    “I always dreamed about sleeping in a pile of hay in the arms of someone I loved.” Pg. 231.
     I choose this quote because throughout the book you see what Chuy’s life goals were but having love
    was the one he wanted most. This book also gives a different perspective on life.
    The main character had wished for things that he didn't get and regretted things that he had done.
     I enjoyed knowing most of the Spanish words that Soto had incorporated in his book.
    I would recommend this book for either gender for ages 13 and older.
     I recommended this book for this age group because there is a bit of violence and language and I feel
    this would be the age group that could handle it.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 15, 2013

    The Afterlife

    Not as good as i thought it woulld be.

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  • Posted December 12, 2012

    For this book report I read The Afterlife by Gary Soto. The Afte

    For this book report I read The Afterlife by Gary Soto. The Afterlife was published by Harcourt Inc. in 2003. The theme of this book is that there are two phases in life: life and death. In this story Gary Soto will show you what the main character sees after he dies. The main character of The Afterlife is a normal 17-year-old boy named Chuy that lives in California and is Mexican. He likes track but is always in 2nd place. He also likes basketball but the coach told him he is too short. He is nice to his friends and family and is a fairly good student.
    The book starts with Chuy in a nightclub bathroom preparing himself to meet up with a girl that he really likes. As he is in there looking at himself in the mirror, another man comes in, kind of “gangster” looking with stylish yellow shoes, to wash his hands. Being the nice kid that Chuy is, he compliments the guy on his shoes. Instead of saying thank-you, the guy stabs Chuy in the stomach multiple times, leaving him laying on the ground bleeding out. Since there is nobody there to witness it, Chuy lays there for a few minutes until his ghost begins to separate from his dying body. Chuy was very mind-blown on what just happened as he was hovering over his own dead self in ghost form. As he became more aware that he had died and turned into a ghost, he had also become aware that he was floating through the ceiling and out the roof of the nightclub. Once he is about thirty feet above the nightclub, he notices that the police are starting to show up. A few minutes later his parents come for the bad news. Right when they start to cry, the wind picks up and starts to push Chuy’s ghost along in the direction of his house. He visits his heart broken cousins, uncles, and aunts before he sets out to find out why he got stabbed in the first place. As he is floating around in a bad part of town, he sees the guy in the yellow shoes and follows him for a little bit until he sees where he lives. The guy lives in a rundown looking house that seems to have a stockpile of stolen goods in it that his fat friend Fausto is planning on selling to make some money. Chuy is content with what he has seen on “yellow shoes” level of poverty and he floats on through town. As he is floating he notices that his fingers and toes are disappearing. He concludes that over time a ghost will disappear. After floating around he sees a girl, but this is no ordinary girl, she is a ghost too. He floats over to her to ask her about herself and eventually he finds out a lot about her. Her name is Crystal and she was the vice president of her school and a cheerleader. She had two boyfriends. Both were jocks. He also finds out how she died. She had purposefully overdosed on pills because she had thought she would not make it anywhere in life. Over the course of two days they had managed to fall in love with each other.
    I really liked this book because it was set in the view of a ghost and it had the two of them fall in love. During my reading of this book, I learned to not take anything for granted, and that life may not end when you die. I would recommend this book to kids my age because, as I said, there is the love parts, which younger kids would not understand. Altogether I thought this was a great book and I would definitely read it again.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 25, 2012

    Smoke 101

    I started reading it, and it's already funny! Cannot wait to read the rest of the book.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted June 22, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    THE AFTERLIFE

    This is an OK book I guess,it just didn't have anything that stuck out to me to make it a wonderful book and I didn't really like the ending too much. I just feel like Mr. Soto gave up before he finished or something(also it's not a very long book for those that like books like that). The story is told through 17 year old Chuy's eyes. He's in the bathroom of a club one night getting ready to meet a girl he likes when he is stabbed to death for complimenting a guy's yellow shoes. He is now a ghost going to family and friends after and finding out how much he was really loved. He meets the ghost of a girl(Crystal) who commited suicide and they go back to her parents and boyfriends(she had more than one). Some people may like this book(it wasn't terrible) but it really didn't do anything for me except pass some time.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 16, 2009

    Not as good as I thought

    The book The Afterlife, isn't particularly what I expected it to be about. I knew it was about the after life of a teenager, but the way that it described the afterlife wasn't real exciting. I was surprised to read about a ghost who temporarily floated around in the air but, I wasn't surprised that he met other ghosts. The spirits body's were slowly disappearing limb by limb, and they were light as a feather, it was difficult to fight the winds power but with focus and concentration he was able to go where he wanted to go.
    It begins with the death of the main character Chuy by getting stabbed and dieing immediately, isn't that odd way to begin a book. All Chuy did was complement some guy for having cool yellow shoes and the creepy stranger decided to stab him. The entire book was about him being a ghost visiting his family and meeting two new ghosts. Also the book doesn't explain to much about what happened to his body once he became a ghost. Once Chuy was a ghost he was able to walk through walls, make living people sense him and lastly he was invincible. He wanders around his town experimenting his powers as a ghost. He eventually meets a girl named Charlotte and she tells him that she died from pills. They end up liking each other and spend a lot of time together.
    In general this book was decent. It was very interesting to hear someones opinion of what happens after death. Once you die you get to be a ghost for a little while, it made me think whats going to happen after I die. I thought that this book was very well written. It was cool how the author added some Spanish words in the text. I liked having to look them up seeing what they meant. Even though some of the words weren't so nice. Out of 5 stars I would give it a 3. It wasn't amazing but as well it wasn't horrible it was just OK.

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  • Posted December 15, 2009

    The Afterlife

    Have you ever wondered where you would go after your life ended? Have you ever wondered what it would be like to be a ghost? If so, the book The Afterlife written by Gary Soto is highly recommended. This book starts off with an brutal beginning as the main character Chuy, also known as Jesus spends his night at a normal teen night club named Estrella. His night was going along as any other night would be, when he makes one decision that would change his entire life. You'd think it would be something horrible or against the law, but all Chuy did was comment on another kid's bright yellow shoes. The kid, also known to Chuy as "Yellow Shoes" quickly stabs a knife into Chuy's chest, and kills him. You would thing that was the end, but for Chuy, this would be the beginning of a new life for him: the afterlife. Soon after Chuy realizes he is dead he sees his body lying hopelessly on the floor of the restroom, in which nobody should die. He soon begins to notice he can float, go through walls, and more. Chuy looks back on his life that he once thought of as very boring and not so interesting, and really begins to wish he had appreciated it more. Chuy now knows that this is not a dream, and there is no possible way that he could come back to life, so he try's to make the best out of being a ghost. He is easily entertained roaming through the air and passing through walls. He evens follows around 'Yellow Shoes' to get a glimpse of how he really is. He notices pieces of his body start to vanish into thin air. This scares Chuy, but he figures its all just apart of the afterlife. He soon meets the 'love of his afterlife', Rachel. Rachel is also a ghost. Once they roam for a while and get to know one another, Chuy finds out that Rachel was one of the most popular ones in her school, and a cheerleader. That's when he realizes she had taken her own life. It shocks Chuy and he is very curious to why she would do that. Later, he finds out that she had over-dosed on pain medication due to the depression of her two past boyfriends. He teaches Rachel how to glide gently throughout the air, and all the cool benefits about being a ghost. They soon find out that they met before, when they were alive. Chuy and his father had worked on Rachel's house. That's when Chuy realized that they were meant to be together. Chuy notices that Rachel is starting to vanish as well as him, and they come to realize that they wont be ghosts for much longer. As they fly off into the park to take one last look of Rachel's dead body in her car, they find a homeless man, looking ragged and worn out, close to death, who later is identified as Robert Montgomery. After the homeless man dies, they become ghostly friends. Robert is a very kind-hearted guy, and when learns how Chuy died, becomes very upset. He actually goes into Yellow Shoe's body, and makes him do better things, and stay out of trouble. The book continues on and has a very good ending. I love this book very much because it makes me realize how one little decision can impact your whole life. It also made me look at death as not such a bad thing, because afterlife can be just as great, and for Chuy - even greater. I would recommend this book to just about anybody who loves books about life, and people who love reading stories all the way through, and even if you are not one of those people, this book is very different and very engaging. I enjoyed The Afterlife by Gary Soto immensely.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted November 10, 2009

    The Afterlife

    My reviewing is from the Afterlife noble. This story had a good message of forgiveness. The message that this book is sending is forgiveness. We need to forgive and to always tell our loved ones how much we love them, because we never know when we are going to die. The tone of the story was sad. Also it was a tragedy to because he got killed in a cruel way. The author purpose was to entertain the reader's in an interesting story. The genre from this book was contemporary realistic fiction. Contemporary realistic fiction because in the beginning of the story Chui is dying in the restroom of the club he is expressing how he is feeling. Also that he is realizing that his losing his life. The afterlife story takes place in Fresno in a club called Estrella. In this place is where the action takes place because in this place yellow shoes murder chuy with a knife. Chuy begins being a ghost and starts wonder in Fresno. The main characters are Chui, Crystal, and Yellow Shoes. The purpose of Chui and crystal was to say goodbye to their family. I liked this book because they both go to heaven. I also liked this book because it was a short story and it had a nice spiritual ending. I agreed with the purpose of the message. To forgive those who harm us because we could live or rest. The specifically thing that I like was the romance of Chui and Crystal. The author did a good job on this story because it was short and interesting. It could be improved more by adding one more chapter in the end.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 31, 2009

    The Afterlife by Gary Soto has been one of the best books I have read.

    How would you react if you saw your body slowly die but your soul was still a live? Especially, if you don't believe in ghost. "The Afterlife by Gary Soto, is great book to read for all the fantasy/journey/romance lovers. The main character "Chuy", goes through a difficult journey after he is killed by some random guy in a club's restroom. He experiments his ghostly body in ways he never taught he'd be. As a ghost, he can see and listen to everyone but no one even knows his soul is around.He tries to get every ones attention with what ever he can but nothing seems to work. Chuy's main objective is to find out why that guy kills him. During his investigation he meets another ghost. She is a beautiful young girl that is his age. She committed suicide. She is a very confused,shy, and sad ghost when she meets Chuy. Both ghostly spirits end up falling in love. Towards the end of the amazing story he never finds out why that guy kills him but he does find out what true love feels like. He analyzes his life and finds out the things that mattered in his life and wants to go back to life to accomplish many things he wanted to do. His reflection is sad but theirs nothing he can do to go back. The message he gives is to value what you do have now that you may not have tomorrow. This is book for all ages. For any one who is going through a tough time and may feel like life isn't the best thing their is this is the book you should read. I truly recommend you to read this book. The author Gary Soto is a great Latino writer. He has many other great books to read.

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  • Posted January 4, 2009

    Impressions of The Afterlife by Gary Soto

    `The Afterlife¿ by Gary Soto starts with a harsh beginning as Chuy, a young teenager gets stabbed inside the bathroom of a nightclub. For some, death would be the end of everything, but for Chuy it was just the beginning. A few minutes after Chuy dies, he rises out of his body to become his own ghost. He flies over Fresno, his hometown and discovers what his new figure is like. He visits his best friend, his ¿would-be novia¿, and his family and friends. Chuy realizes just how many people care for him and love him as he watches them grieve after his death. As time goes on, Chuy recognizes that his time as a ghost is limited, and he races against the clock to make sure he can visit everyone one last time. Chuy meets another ghost named Rachel, who could be his first true love. In the afterlife, Chuy learns a lot about life, love, and death. Soto¿s novel allows the reader to view life from a different perspective. I thought 'The Afterlife' was nicely written overall, but it had some slow parts where my mind started to drift off. I enjoyed the plot of the story, and it was very unique from other books that I have read in the past. I enjoyed how Soto inserted blurbs of Spanish into the English text. For example, instead of saying ¿baggy Dickies cut off at the knees¿, he wrote ¿huango Dickies cut off at the knees¿. This creative writing style allowed for a nice diversion within the text. The Afterlife leaves a moving message upon the reader after finishing the novel.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 12, 2008

    The After life

    The after life is a very good book, everything is surreal. The way the author tells the story is very compelling; it makes you feel like you are there with the main character in the story. When the main character dies his soul leaves his body and he feels no more pain, after he was stabbed by the boy in the yellow shoes. His body is lying on the floor of the rest room in which no should die. The main character can see around the rest room, and also the blood which was flowing on the flood, now, he realizes that he is dead and that he can float around and see thing by floating, but he not very good at it. In the story He is able to see his parents crying for him and, also can touch them or make them feel any better. Later in the story he finds out that he can make his family feel him by blowing on them so that they can feel a cold chill running down their body. The story gets more interesting when his family wants revenge his death. His mother is the one who wants the revenge. She ask her nephew to do the deed, but he refuse to do it. The main character then meets another person, who has died and she doesn¿t know how to control her self, because she is floating like a bird that has a broken wing. So the main character shows her how to float. But the girl tells him what happen to his foot. He looks down and sees that his foot has disappeared and that his time was running out. So now he has a bit of little time left in this world, because he is being erased. When time is not on your side you must do what¿s more important to you. The main character finds the girl he was looking for in the after life. This is a great book to read.

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  • Posted October 22, 2008

    THE AFTERLIFE.

    i thought this book was very good & well writen. it really kept me wanting to read more & not put the book down. there was alot of spanish in the book, i liked that alot exspecialy because i happen to need more help in that language. the only thing i'd have to say is that this books ending could have been a little better. but besides that i highly recommend it :)

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 13, 2008

    Nifty Spiffy! :D

    I loved this book. The reason for not giving it all 5 stars, is because the ending kinda sucks, leaves you kinda hanging a bit. But I really liked it, couldn't put it down, i recommend it. :D

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 19, 2007

    The Afterlife

    The Afterlife by Gary Soto was a good book. This book is about a kid named Chuy who was murdered by a man with yellow shoes. After being murdered he realizes he¿s in the ¿afterlife¿ and a ghost. He wonders around town trying to find out who his murderer is. While on his journey he goes to visit his family and friends to say sorry for what had happened to him and they should not worry about him because he is okay. During this he runs into a girl who surprisingly could see him, she was also a ghost. He helped her out and taught her the rules to being a ghost. He soon realizes he¿s in love with her and somehow thinks she looks familiar. Later on he finds out he met her when he was little, and she also likes her. I would recommend this book to people who like stories about death and love. This book shows that love comes in different ways even if it¿s in the afterlife.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 18, 2007

    Great book for ages 12 and up

    'The Afterlife', by Gary Soto is a great book that won't let you stop reading. Jesus, known by his friends at Fresno High as Chuy, is the main character of the book. He is a normal teenager until a night when he decides to go out to a Club with some friends. Chuy makes a smart remark to a man wearing bright yellow shoes, and thinks nothing of it. But, as he is standing there, the man plunges a knife into Chuy's chest unexpectedly. Once Chuy dies and leaves his body on the bathroom floor of the club, his 'life' starts to get interesting. Chuy looks back on his life that he once thought of as plain and sometimes boring, and really wishes he had appreciated it more. Chuy knows that there is no way that he is going to ever come back to life, so he tries to make the best of being a ghost. He is easily entertained by soaring through the air and passing through walls. Chuy even follows around his killer to see what he's really like, since he had no clue as to who he was. Chuy soon meets the love of his 'life', Rachel. Rachel is around Chuy's age and is also a ghost. Chuy learns that she was very popular and was involved in many things when she was alive. This is why Chuy is shocked when she informs him that she had killed herself. You later find out that she had done this mainly because of her two boyfriends that she was going out with at one time. Chuy and Rachel witness a fight between Rachel's boyfriends, which adds to her distress. He teaches Rachel the basics of being a ghost. They soon find out that they had met once before when they were alive. Chuy and his father had been working outside of Rachel's house and she had seen him when he came in for a drink. Chuy fully believes that they were meant for each other. Chuy notices that his body is rapidly disappearing along with Rachel's. They come to realize that they wont be ghosts for much longer. As the two of them are going through the park where Rachel's car with her body was, they came across a dying homeless man, later identified as Robert Montgomery. Chuy uses his ghost powers to return the mans soul to his body, but this doesn't last and the man dies. When Chuy meets Robert, he finds him to be a great friend and a very nice person. Robert learns of what had happened to Chuy and he is furious. Robert makes an attempt to make Chuy(also the name of the killer) a better person by going into his body and trying to make him do better things such as go to church. The plot of the book is very well written. I really liked this book. The major thing that really interested me about the way it was written is the way that Soto would put Spanish words into a sentence at random. I like this because, due to the context clues, you can pretty much always figure out what the word translated to in english. This was just something new that I liked that I had never came across before. This book really gave me a new outlook on life. It shows that life might actually not end at death. It shows that the best things in your life may occur after death. The way that Soto describes the afterlife makes it much easier to talk or just think about. I would definitely recommend this book to anyone above age 12.(Some parts may seem too graphic to younger readers) The book is very well written and easy to understand. It also keeps you wanting to read the whole way through.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 15, 2007

    The Meaning Of The Afterlife

    This novel is published by Library Of Congress Cataloging-in- Publication Data. The Afterlife by Gary Soto made me realize how important the afterlife really is. A teenager named Chuy has an average life until he is stabbed to death by a man he refers to as ¿ Yellow shoes¿. Chuy ends up becoming a ghost and he has to face the problems in his memories. When he is a ghost he wanders the towns searching for answers and remembering past experiences he had. Also, Chuy wishes he could go back in time to fix some of the mistakes that he made. Learning the experiences of being a ghost he revisits some of his friends and family. He is discouraged when he sees them teary eyed and upset. During his lifetime he wished for a girl named Rachel to like him. Chuy¿s mind is focused on love throughout the story. Finally when he meets Crystal , another ghost, he is happy and curious. But Chuy is starting to disappear and he has no idea why. The main theme in the story is curiosity because Chuy gets into many situations by his curiosity. I liked this novel because I thought it was a classic piece of literature. It made me think twice about ghosts and the afterlife. If I have learned anything in life from this book¿I would say I learned that it is alright to die. Life is not always fair even though we wish it were. I would recommend this book to any age because it is a novel that makes you appreciate what you have, especially your life.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 5, 2007

    Boring

    The back of the book sounded REALLY good so I started to read it. I figured it was just hard to get into, but it was boring throughout the whole book. If you're looking for juicy murder books, this isn't one. Sorry :-(

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 6, 2006

    From a different perspective

    I think that this was an incredible book. I really enjoyed how the story was told from a ghost's perspective. Having the main character die on the second page of the book was both shocking and unbelievable. I would really recommend this book to other people because it is told from a perspective that isn't normally done. The fact that the ghost of the main character is telling the story allows for an interesting approach to how the story unfolds and how it is narrated.

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