After the Rain explores the nature of relationships and their effects on independence. The novel focuses on Rachel Cooper, a fifteen year old who worries about her appearance, her differences from other girls, and her prospects for having a boyfriend. These concerns reflect a sense of insecurity that Rachel must overcome in order to mature and to accept relationships.

The novel treats the universal struggle to achieve independence without alienating loved ones whose affection sometimes appears confining. Young adults empathize with Rachel's irritable outbursts against her parents, the guilt she feels afterwards, and her driving need for independence. After the Rain clarifies the relationship between self-esteem and the ability to accept love, shedding light on the meaning of maturity and the process of attaining it.

(The entire section is 125 words.)