“It will keep you up all night reading.” USA Today bestselling author Tiffany King.
Walker Callaghan doesn’t know what happened to her. One minute she was living her teenage life in suburban Chicago…and the next minute, she was in a strange place and in a brand new school with absolutely no homework, no rules, and no consequences. Walker Callaghan, 17, is dead. She doesn’t go to heaven or hell. She lands at The Academy, a middle realm where teenagers have one thing in common: They were the morning announcement at their high schools because they died young.
These high school kids are now caught in a strange “in-between” zone where life hasn’t changed very much. In fact, this special teen limbo looks a lot like life in a quaint Michigan town complete with jocks, popular girls and cliques. “There are even cheerleaders in death,” Walker observes. It’s not a coincidence that the music teacher is a guy named Kurt who “used to have this band.” The drama teacher, Heath, is crush worthy because back in his life, he starred in some superhero movie.
Principal King explains the rules — there are none. Why? You can’t die twice.
There is no homework. No tests. No SATS. You’re just there to learn because the human brain isn’t fully formed until you’re 24.
By the way, you can’t get hurt physically, so race your Harley off that hillside. But falling in love is the most dangerous thing you can do …because no one knows how long you’ll stay in this realm or what’s next.
“Losing someone you love would be like dying twice,” Walker says.
* * * * * *
Walker Callaghan has just arrived at the Academy after a tragic car accident. “Is this heaven or is this high school?” she asks.
She finds out her new life is a bit of both as she falls in love with tat-covered, bad boy Daniel Reid who is about to break the only sacred rule of this place. He’s looking for a portal to return back to the living realm.
He needs just one hour to retrieve his younger brother who strangely never arrived at The Academy. Bobby is an Earth Bound Spirit, stuck at a plane crash site that took both of their lives as their rich father piloted his private jet nose-first into a cornfield on Christmas Eve.
Walker loves Daniel and risks it all to go with him.
Have they learned enough to outsmart dangerous forces while transporting a young child with them? Can their love survive the fragmented evil parts of themselves that are now hunting them down as they try to find a way back to the middle?
At the Academy, you learn the lessons of an after-lifetime.
TRAILER WITH ORIGINAL MUSIC FROM THE CURE’S ROGER O’DONNELL
Resch Reads: One word to describe this book is EPIC. Sheer writing brilliance.”
Amazon: “A new ‘Twilight Zone’ of a world. Speaking of Uncle Stevie, otherwise known as Stephen King, ‘Ascenders’ reads like something he might have written back in the Twilight Zone of his own youth. I love Koontz and King and haven’t been this excited about an author in a long time.”
Author Groupies: “If you’re a fan of dystopian epics, this bring a whole new element to the genre: the afterlife. I loved this book. What an original concept! Constantly changing, riveting and thought-provoking.”
Amazon: “The next big book series. Powerful and beautiful. I was so moved by this book that I actually cried, tears streaming down my face. Five minutes later, I was cheering. I felt like I had just seen a movie.”
Mugglenet, The #1 Harry Potter Site: “Ascenders is one of those books that stays on your mind for days after reading it. Though you continue your days, your mind keeps wandering back to the main characters, the overarching theme, and of course, the scenarios of what could possibly happen next. I finished this novel within the span of two days, and I wish that I could start over and read the whole thing again. “
First of all, when I saw the cover for Ascenders, I completely fell in love. How gorgeous and mysterious! So, of course I had to read the words that went along with the picture. The premise of the book hooked me and reeled me in – a school for dead teenagers? I couldn’t wait to dive in!
The story of Walker’s afterlife at a school that isn’t quite in purgatory, is a a colorful, thought-provoking exploration of what could possibly happen in the great unknown. The way that C.L. Gaber imagined what this place would be like for deceased teenagers got my mind going. I had a clear picture of everything she described the whole time I was reading. The characters were diverse and well thought out; I hope we get to see “the boy that went back before” *no spoiler* in the next book. I would love to learn more about him.
I had many different ideas about which way this book was going to go, but none even came close. My feelings were all over the place while reading; from laughing to crying to being on the edge of my seat, all in a matter of pages. I really enjoyed the variation in mood.
The book was somewhat drawn out at times for me, but honestly that did not hamper my enjoyment. I truly look forward to the next installment to see where the story goes from here!
C.L. Gaber Bio:
C.L. GABER is the author of ASCENDERS, the first book in Ascenders SAGA. She is also the co-author of “Jex Malone.” A lifelong entertainment journalist, she interviews A list film and TV stars for the New York Times wire and various other publications. C.L. lives in Nevada with her husband Ron, bonus daughter Sabrina and two unruly dogs. You can reach her at CLGaber@yahoo.com