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November 3, 2021

How I'm Spending My Afterlife by Spencer Fleury ~ a Review

by Susan Roberts

"What I couldn't figure out was whether I was a horrible person or not." (p63)

Amazon affiliate links are used on this site. A free book was provided for an honest review.

How I'm Spending My Afterlife
September 2021; Woodhall Press; 978-1949116939
ebook, print (268); literary fiction

Alton Carver lives in a nice house and lives with his wife Nicole and his beloved 4-year-old daughter Clara. He appears to have a good life and be a real respected lawyer at his firm.  In truth, he has embezzled millions of dollars from his clients and knows that he is under federal investigation.    So he decides to fake his death.  That way he can eliminate the chance of prosecution and jail plus his wife and daughter will be able to live well on the insurance payout.  He has thought through all angles of faking his death and decides to go out in his boat, start a fire and disappear to shore on a kayak.  All goes well until he realizes that it's difficult to row a kayak, that he no longer has transportation, and that he really misses his daughter.  He decides to stay in town a bit longer and alters his appearance by shaving his head.  When he should have left for Central America, he begins making stupid decisions all of which could lead to his discovery.  He watches his daughter on the playground, he sneaks into his home, and he attends his memorial service.  While listening to the people at the service, he realizes that he wasn't as well thought of by his colleagues and friends and was barely even liked. He also finds out that his wife has a boyfriend.  This enrages him and decides to stay in town even longer to get revenge and begins to make even dumber decisions.  What comes next is a train wreck, a tale of self-deception, revenge, and bad decisions.

The story is told in alternating chapters by Alton and Nicole and what we find out is that they are both very selfish and unlikable characters.  Alton has a very high opinion of himself as a lawyer and a husband and Nicole has really been fed up with him for years and has a long-term boyfriend.  The only likable person in the novel is Clara, their daughter.  Even though I didn't like the characters, I just had to keep reading to find out how it all ended.

Despite the fact that parts of this book are unbelievable and that the characters are so selfish and unlikable, I found this to be a very quirky and interesting book.  This is a debut book for this author and I look forward to reading future books by him.

Susan Roberts lives in North Carolina with her husband of over 50 years.  She grew up in Michigan but now calls North Carolina home. She enjoys reading, traveling, and spending time with her family. She reads almost anything (and the piles of books in her house prove that) but her favorite genres are Southern fiction, women's fiction, and historical fiction. Susan is a top 1% Goodreads Reviewer. You can connect with Susan on Facebook.


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  1. I'm always down for a quirky read! Thank you for being on this tour! Sara @ TLC Book Tours