The Astonishing Color of After by Emily X.R. Pan

The Astonishing Color of After

Leigh Chen Sanders is absolutely certain about one thing: When her mother died by suicide, she turned into a bird.Leigh, who is half Asian and half white, travels to Taiwan to meet her maternal grandparents for the first time. There, she is determined to find her mother, the bird. In her search, she winds up chasing after ghosts, uncovering family secrets, and forging a new relationship with her grandparents. And as she grieves, she must try to r...

Details The Astonishing Color of After

TitleThe Astonishing Color of After
Release DateMar 20th, 2018
PublisherLittle, Brown Books for Young Readers
GenreYoung Adult, Magical Realism, Contemporary, Fiction, Fantasy

Reviews The Astonishing Color of After

  • Emily May
    Depression, I opened my mouth to say, but the word refused to take shape. Why was it so hard to talk about this? Why did my mother’s condition feel like this big secret?...“She’s forgotten how to be happy,” I told him. As you can see from the picture I shared on instagram, this book was so quotable. There were so many beautiful thoughts, emotions and moments captured perfectly with words.I probably wouldn't have read The Astonishing Color...
  • Hailey (HaileyinBookland)
    TW: suicide, depressionSuch a beautiful debut! The writing was exquisite, I really cared for the characters, and I loved learning more about Chinese/Taiwanese culture! It was a fully immersive read that was definitely heartbreaking, but beautiful overall. The magical realism/religion element was excellently executed. Really enjoyed this one! My only complaint is it was a teensy bit too long IMO (though it did really insanely fast for the most par...
  • Melanie
    “If he looked in my eyes straight on, he would know how he’d pierced me with an arrow, how its shaft was still sticking out of my chest, twitching each time my heart contracted. And maybe he’d see how my mother had sliced up everything else.” This is one of the most beautiful books I’ve ever read in my entire life. It’s powerful, moving, poignant, lyrical, important, and touched me beyond words. From the discussion about mental healt...
  • Lola Reviewer
    4.5 stars.Some books you read because they’re not unpleasant or you don’t have a choice in the matter.Other books you read because your body naturally gravitates to them, and for the sake of your sanity, you simply give in. This is one of those books. The writing is so evocative that you will feel the intensity of everything the main character goes through to the marrow of your bones and be able to picture it all in your mind like a movie. No...
  • Elise (TheBookishActress)
    can't decide on a four or a five, but like... that should say something either way?? cathartic, emotive, and gorgeously written, with a lead protagonist I absolutely adore. review to come!
  • Emily Pan
    I guess I should maybe give my own book five stars?NEWS:THE ASTONISHING COLOR OF AFTER debuted on the New York Times Bestseller list and the Indie Bestseller list!It also was named by the Wall Street Journal as one of the top twelve books of the season, was #5 on the INDIE NEXT list, a Junior Library Guild selection, a Book of the Month Club pick, and the Birchbox Book Club pick for March 2018!Check out the STARRED REVIEWS and media buzz:“Parti...
  • Larry H
    4.5 stars, rounded up.Lyrical, emotionally powerful, even fantastical at times, The Astonishing Color of After is a stunning, poignant look at grief, family, love, and secrets that packs a real punch, and leaves you with gorgeous images in your mind. "We try so hard to make these little time capsules. Memories strung up just so, like holiday lights, casting the perfect glow in the perfect tones. But that picking and choosing what to look at, wh...
  • Khanh, first of her name, mother of bunnies
    I'm proud of my Asian heritage. That said, there are some things upon which the Asian culture can improve in general, and one of the major issues is how we treat mental illness. It is a stigma. It is ignored until one explodes. Even in the US, Asian-American women have a high rates of suicide because of how unwilling we are to talk about our problem, and the unwillingness of our family to confront it.There have been numerous suicides among famous...
  • Maggie
    Once upon a time we were the standard colors of a rainbow, cheery and certain of ourselves. At some point, we all began to stumble into the in-betweens, the murky colors made dark and complicated by resentment and quiet anger. At some point, my mother slid so off track she sank into hues of gray, a world drawn only in shadows. Contemporary and magical realism, a strange combination that does not happen often. First book I ever read that included...
  • jessica
    can we all just take a moment to appreciate that this is a debut??!!? like, honestly. i am the astonishing colour of impressed. this book definitely didnt read like it was an authors first work. this was magic. just the imagery alone was outstanding - it showcased dealing with grief in such beautiful and colourful way! i really hope emily pan chooses to write another book because i need more of her writing! 4.5 stars
  • April
    This book hit home for me. From Leigh losing her mom to how she had to grow up being biracial. Just a beautiful and heartfelt story.
  • Korrina (OwlCrate)
    Beautiful and heartbreaking. Easily one of the best books I’ve read this year, and definitely a new favourite.
  • Joshua Gabriel (조수아)
    There's no point in wishing. We can't change anything about the past. We can only remember. We can only move forward.Last December, many K-pop fans (myself included) were distraught when SHINee's Jonghyun committed suicide. Following this tragedy, EXO's Baekhyun was criticized for saying that he didn't know why people get depressed. These events in the K-pop world piqued my interest and made me realize that depression isn't something that shouldn...
  • Lily ☁️
    Basically, I ditched all my would-be current reads and everything else in my life for this book (with Hamiltrash #1’s blessing), and it kind of (?) lived up to being one of my most anticipated 2018 releases. (rtc)Pretty, pretty please, let me love this.*A COPY OF THIS BOOK FOUND ITS WAY INTO MY HANDS TODAY, AND I’M SO HAPPY RIGHT NOW MY HEART IS BURSTING.*A female, half-Asian main character, a storyline set in Taiwan (!!!), and elements of ma...
  • Eryn✵
    3.75/5 My mother is a bird. This isn’t like some William Faulkner stream-of-consciousness metaphorical crap. My mother. Is literally. A bird. First of all, I love the quote above; such a phenomenal and humorous way to start a novel.Wow, okay, this book went through so many ups and downs. But it doesn’t matter because it ended up being more unique and touching than I thought it would/could be -- and I couldn't be any happier by that!The openin...
  • Yusra ✨
    that was one of the most beautiful books I have ever read in my life. it was stunning. I don’t have words. review to come when I can breathe again ————I am ready to be torn apart. buddy read with Caidyn and Melanie!
  • Liz Barnsley
    This book is simply incredible. I absorbed it into my soul and cried like a baby when I finished it. I then put it on my review list and it’s taken me a while to come back to tell you all about it, but here I am.“How could a person like her be depressed? She was full of energy and life and passion. The word depressed made me think of this group of kids at school who wore all black and thick eyeliner and listened to angry music and never showe...
  • Amelia
    This book took a turn that I was not expecting at all. I loved the representation of mental illness and the way that Leigh deals with her mother suicide. There were times where I though the story was going a little too slow for me. I struggled to pick it up after I put it down. But after about half way through I was having trouble putting it down. Definitely recommend for people to read.
  • ilsa ➹
    I cannot put into words how much I absolutely loved this book. Love is not even the correct word here. It’s more like staring obsessively at this book all day, tweeting about it, letting it claim my heart, thinking about it all the time, wanting to own a thousand copies of it.This book just makes my whole body feel alive, it feels like the balance between good sunny weather with a gentle breeze, it’s like those childhood memories you treasure...
  • shady boots | #20gayteen
    Here is my mother, with wings instead of hands, and feathers instead of hair. Here is my mother, the reddest of brilliant reds, the color of my love and my fear, all of my fiercest feelings trailing after her in the sky like the tail of a comet. Trigger Warning: Suicide, depressionIt's strange to think that this whole time I had just been reading words on a screen, cause this book feels like a giant canvas where literally every color imaginable...
  • Nicole N. (A Myriad of Books)
    Where do I even begin? I was immediately drawn to this book because of the main character who is biracial (half-white, half-Asian) like myself. Little did I know what a wild and heartfelt journey this book would be.The great thing is that I won this review copy from a giveaway hosted by TheNovl. I was completely shocked when it came because 1) I never win anything, and 2) little did I think it would be one of my most anticipated releases of 2018!...
  • katherine
    “There's no point in wishing. We can't change anything about the past. We can only remember. We can only move forward.” ok, so I was super nervous going into the book, the blurb didn't sound like something I would like and I wasn't sure on the writing - I was wrong. this book was absolutely beautiful, I loved everything from the characters, to the setting and especially the writing. it was just so magical and lovely and I totally want Emily X...
  • alice (arctic books)
    You can find this review and others at arctic books3.5/5 stars. I hadn’t heard much about THE ASTONISHING COLOR OF AFTER before I was lucky enough to receive a copy of this gorgeous novel in my mailbox. After I read the synopsis, I became so excited to read this, especially because it features a Chinese-American protagonist, written by an #ownvoices author.THE ASTONISHING COLOR OF AFTER follows Leigh, whose Chinese mother committed suicide. As ...
  • Nadia
    ”Everything fades. Everything in the physical world, like paper and furniture, but also things in the mind. Memories, emotions. Life. Friendships. Those fade, too. It’s just a matter of time.” 4 stars TW:suicide, depressionread full review here*full review include favorite quotes and a spoiler sectionOkay, so this book gave me multiple existential crises, so I hope you enjoy reading this review while I sit here and ponder the nature of my e...