Goodreads: World After
Series: Penryn and the End of Days #2
Published: November 19, 2013
When a group of people capture Penryn’s sister Paige, thinking she’s a monster, the situation ends in a massacre. Paige disappears. Humans are terrified. Mom is heartbroken.
Penryn drives through the streets of San Francisco looking for Paige. Why are the streets so empty? Where is everybody? Her search leads her into the heart of the angels’ secret plans where she catches a glimpse of their motivations, and learns the horrifying extent to which the angels are willing to go.
Meanwhile, Raffe hunts for his wings. Without them, he can’t rejoin the angels, can’t take his rightful place as one of their leaders. When faced with recapturing his wings or helping Penryn survive, which will he choose?
World After is a fantastic contribution to the Penryn and the End of Days series. Susan Ee shows off her writing chops by crafting a story that is exciting, moving, and dangerous even while the love interest readers have come to adore in the first book is absent for most of the plot. Although protagonist Penryn would love to have the protection of Rafe and his comforting presence, she shows she is more than capable of handling herself—and caring for her family—in a broken world.
The stakes for Penryn and her world are actually higher than ever in this installment. The resisters to the angel occupation thought they had pulled off a brilliant and devastating attack in Angelfall, but it turns out that they had destroyed very little and understood very little of the angels’ real plans. Penryn, Rafe, and the rebellion are suddenly faced with enemies more dangerous than before and prospects bleaker than ever. Ee keeps the story from becoming too dire, however, by using the dangerous to explore what it means to be a hero and if Penryn has to make the choice to act like one.
Penryn certainly grows along with her ever-growing responsibilities. She must tackle whether it is enough to save her sister, whether she should save everyone else as well, or if she even can. The other characters also get a lot of development in this book, however, including Rafe and Penryn’s mother and sister. Paige suffered terribly from the experiments performed on her in Angelfall, and coming back into human society may not be enough for her to recuperate. Penryn’s mother must come to terms with how much she, broken herself, can be held responsible for protecting her own daughters. And Rafe is still torn between obligations to angel commands and his own sense of ethics.
This means the romance between Penryn and Rafe is still up in the air, and I love it. Their relationship is not just frowned upon; it is absolutely forbidden, and consummating it in any way will have dire consequences. I love not going how this all will play out, and being torn between whether I should be rooting for them to get together, or hoping that Rafe should stay true to the commands from his God.
World After, all at once, is thrilling, romantic, and thoughtful. I can’t way to finish the journey with Penryn and Rafe in book three.