What Comes After Summary
JoAnne Tompkins

Everything you need to understand or teach What Comes After by JoAnne Tompkins.

  • What Comes After Summary & Study Guide

What Comes After Overview

JoAnne Tompkins' work What Comes After serves as a philosophical inquiry into how to move beyond unspeakable tragedy to render a life well-lived. Isaac Balch is steeped in grief following the murder of his adolescent son Daniel, at the hands of his best friend, Jonah. The suffering is compounded when Jonah subsequently commits suicide. To further complicate matters, a pregnant girl appears on Isaac’s lawn adding to the mystery of the murder-suicide. In addition to examining how those left in the wake of tragedy move forward, Tompkins addresses weighty life questions such as what separates man from beast, what constitutes a life well-lived, how can one maintain faith in the face of suffering, and how does one love after loss.

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