Afterimage - Ais, Santino Hassell "Love and trust and believing in other people – what was the point when humans were all flawed and fucked up anyway, when they only hurt each other continuously because they were too stupid to do anything else?"

I am sad. So sad.

I finished Afterimage last night and went straight into [b:The Interludes|10506860|The Interludes (In the company of shadows, #3)|Santino Hassell||15412744]. Last night I was feeling much better about everything that happened in this book. Throughout Afterimage I told myself that everything that was happening was happening for a reason. That both Boyd and Sin needed to work on their inner demons before they could ever hope to have a truly healthy relationship. The pain that they were inflicting on themselves and each other would all be for the greater good. Then this morning I woke up and realised that I’m a fool, a fool who was in denial. Today I can’t stop thinking about everything Sin. I would just like to go sit somewhere quiet and have a little cry.

The pain and loneliness that Sin experiences in this book is just absolutely heart breaking and the more I think about it the more upsetting it becomes.

I love dual POV’s, they are my favourite type of books to read but this book was one of the best dual POV’s I’ve read. I spent most of my time changing my mind about who was doing the right thing. I would read Boyd’s POV and think to myself ‘I can totally see why he is doing that, he needs to look out for himself, he needs to be selfish or he will never be happy.’

Then I would read a Sin POV and everything would go out the window and my heart would break for him and I would find myself so angry with Boyd for how selfish he was being. Sin makes mistakes, really, really big ones but I honestly was never angry with him. He has absolutely no idea how relationships (not just romantic) work. He has never really been treated as a human so how can he possibly know how to navigate his way through all these new feelings? Add to that the fact that he is very unwell and the people that should be helping are either completely unprofessional (Ann) or just have absolutely no idea how to communicate properly with him (Carhart) and we witness him go through terrible bouts of depression, fear and loneliness.

"I only cared about my life after he was in it. Why should I care now that he’s not anymore?"

"Please don’t hate me ever again."

It was so difficult to see him like this. Sin is a lethal weapon and everyone around him seems to think that he is incapable of remorse or empathy. The reality is in fact the opposite.

"I didn't live up to your expectations and you aren't living up to mine."

There are no real answers to anything in Afterimage. At the end there are just more questions but it definitely gives you a much clearer look at the people that inhabit this world. Nothing in the world of ICoS is black and white and not everybody is what they seem. If I had one complaint it would be the length of the book, it is mammoth and there is a lot of repetition. As with Evenfall I understand that the authors are working on editing it. I usually only give books that I would definitely reread 5 stars and when I finished this I did give it 4 stars as I wasn’t sure I could work my way through it a second time but I will definitely, without a shadow of a doubt, be reading the edited version so that’s a reread right? Sin has kind of made me fall in love with him so it feels wrong not giving it all the stars.

Throughout reading this my brain kept throwing the lyrics of one particular song at me, so it has kind of become my soundtrack for this book. I’m pretty sure that every time I hear it from now on Boyd and Sin will come to mind. Part of me thinks it’s because I went to see the band who sing it two weeks ago so their music is banging around inside my head but I also felt the lyrics were very Boyd and Sin.

“And I have seen all that you've seen
And I have been where you've been
No, our hands will never be clean
At least we can hold each other”

“When You Break”
Bear’s Den