“Most people would make sour milk out of the lemons Antonia has been given, but she finds herself more resilient than she knew she was. When her husband passes away the same day she retires and the problems keep adding up, she must decide what to do. Julia Alvarez writes like she painted a picture you need to sit beside. Breathless and cinematic, this book is one to share with friends and the one we should be talking about in 2020.”
— Suzanne Lucey, Page 158 Books, Wake Forest, NC
A Most-Anticipated Book of the Year: O, The Oprah Magazine * The New York Times * Vogue * Bustle * BuzzFeed * The Millions * The Lily * Goodreads * Library Journal * LitHub * Electric LiteratureThe first adult novel in almost fifteen years by the internationally bestselling author of In the Time of the Butterflies and How the Garc a Girls Lost Their Accents "A stunning work of art that reminds readers Alvarez is, and always has been, in a class of her own." --Elizabeth Acevedo, National Book Award-winning author of the New York Times bestseller The Poet X Antonia Vega, the immigrant writer at the center of Afterlife, has had the rug pulled out from under her. She has just retired from the college where she taught English when her beloved husband, Sam, suddenly dies. And then more jolts: her bighearted but unstable sister disappears, and Antonia returns home one evening to find a pregnant, undocumented teenager on her doorstep. Antonia has always sought direction in the literature she loves--lines from her favorite authors play in her head like a soundtrack--but now she finds that the world demands more of her than words. Afterlife is a compact, nimble, and sharply droll novel. Set in this political moment of tribalism and distrust, it asks: What do we owe those in crisis in our families, including--maybe especially--members of our human family? How do we live in a broken world without losing faith in one another or ourselves? And how do we stay true to those glorious souls we have lost?