“I Fail at the Afterlife” by Anni Sezate

a non-spoiler review

Summary from Goodreads:

When you die and become an angel you don’t expect there to be so much paperwork.

At age seventeen, David Garcia fell to his death and has spent the past ten years filing papers for dead people. His uneventful afterlife is thrown into chaos when he’s attacked by a pernicious demon called Malum. Frozen in terror, David does absolutely nothing to prevent the demon’s escape. Blaming himself, he joins a group of demon hunters intent on recapturing Malum before he destroys the world. Armed with ten years of receptionist training, mediocre fighting skills, and non-stop self-deprecating sarcasm, David soon learns he is in way over his head.

David Garcia has only been an angel for ten paper-pushing years when he decides to become a demon hunter to the fight the incredibly strong demon Malum. This book shows his struggles to balance the Light and Darkness that comes with such a task, especially for someone whose never been much of a fighter. He has to do all this while still trying to be a guardian angel for his living family members and not missing shifts at his office job.

This book is filled with such great world building. Many people have ideas of what the afterlife may look like, and this book does a great job fleshing out this version. Along with setting, the moral dilemmas that inevitably come from books about angels and demons are well developed.

The characters are also well done. David is the most developed as someone who is awkward with low self-esteem, but he feels real, and you can’t help but root for him. He trips all over himself, but he’s doing his best. Other characters like his best friend Jake, his still-living high school friend Sandy, and the demon Sheila are incredibly interesting, and along with some other named but rather unknown characters (I’m so intrigued by Daisy!) we’ll hopefully see more from them in the coming books.

This book is heartfelt and funny, while also portraying the very real danger that the characters are in. Honestly, the only negative is the frequent Harry Potter references, this book can hold its own weight. It’s a great opening to a trilogy! It sets a strong foundation for the next books to come.

For fans of series like Percy Jackson and the Olympians and Artemis Fowl, I Fail at the Afterlife is a fun and easy read to pick up as your next book!

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