Sunday, January 13, 2013

Immortality Meets Gossip Girl

"Heroes are made by the paths they choose,
not the powers they are graced with."
--Brodi Ashton, Everneath

Genre: YA Greek Mythology Re-Telling, Paranormal
Publisher: Balzer + Bray, 370 pages
Release Date: January 24th, 2012

Description from Goodreads:
Last spring, Nikki Beckett vanished, sucked into an underworld known as the Everneath. Now she's returned--to her old life, her family, her boyfriend--before she's banished back to the underworld . . . this time forever. She has six months before the Everneath comes to claim her, six months for good-byes she can't find the words for, six months to find redemption, if it exists.

Nikki longs to spend these precious months forgetting the Everneath and trying to reconnect with her boyfriend, Jack, the person most devastated by her disappearance--and the one person she loves more than anything. But there's just one problem: Cole, the smoldering immortal who enticed her to the Everneath in the first place, has followed Nikki home. Cole wants to take over the throne in the underworld and is convinced Nikki is the key to making it happen. And he'll do whatever it takes to bring her back, this time as his queen.

As Nikki's time on the Surface draws to a close and her relationships begin slipping from her grasp, she is forced to make the hardest decision of her life: find a way to cheat fate and remain on the Surface with Jack or return to the Everneath and become Cole's queen.

My Thoughts:

OK, so I'm aware I'm a little late to the Everneath party. This was one of those books that sounded really good, heard a few mixed reviews on and kept putting other books in front of it on the TBR pile...and then I read it and wonder what the deuce my problem was. Seriously. I do this to myself all the time and then I mentally berate myself for being so stupid and not reading it earlier. The basis of the story is a re-telling of Hades and Persephone...again, my inner geek was screaming at this, READ IT READ IT READ IT! I do not know a whole lot about Greek mythology but the scholar inside me yearns for any and all knowledge of stuff like this. I love the small stories that I do know, I find ancient Greece absolutely fascinating so when I actually did start reading this I was sooo excited!! 

And I was not disappointed! And I MUST gush about the cover (GORGEOUS!!) and my chosen quote at the top (EPIC!). So yeah, the cover is beautiful, I am a sucker for girls in pretty dresses. And the quote, I think while reading I re-read that sentence 5 or 6 times. Beautiful writing...just beautiful. I loved reading about Nikki's journey. Her character was so well-written that I felt what she was feeling. A lot of times when I'm reading a story I ignore my own internal emotions as to what I would do in a situation because I am a selfish reader and want the heroine to do things that only make her happy. But in Nikki's story I completely understood her actions of being distant with her previous friends and boyfriend...she really just did not want to see them hurt. Ashton writes Nikki's story in such a way that you fully understand her desperation and suffocation in her current situation. She really has no way out at so many moments. As a rule I am so hardcore about females in books being strong-headed and outspoken, and objectively Nikki could be seen as weak and passive. However, this is my exception to the rule because I feel that Nikki's inaction is exactly what makes her strong. She is being selfless by trying not to act out too much in order to stay detached and not inflict too much pain on those around her. I felt for her through her entire journey and just love her character!

Now, on to the boys. Jack is just precious. I adored him. He loves Nikki so completely that their emotions just ooze off the page. The steps he takes into trying to get to know her once again had my heart melting. He is a hero among heroes and I was enchanted with the parallels that Ashton wrote about him in regards to mythology. What is it again about a tragic flaw? And Cole. My oh my, what do I even say about Cole? I liked him...I don't love him yet, but I really, really want to. I was fully supporting his cause to get Nikki back in the beginning. He's sexy and smirky and sarcastic and I love all of these attributes about him. BUT I still feel he has one more 'S' lettered adjective that describes him that hold me back...shady. He is still a little too mysterious to me in the forthcoming with knowledge front. Nikki has every right not to fully trust him and his actions. Do I think he really does love her and this is strange for him? YES. Do I want him to find redemption in her and come out the good guy? YES. I relate him to Warner from Shatter Me, but Warner was a little more of an open book-ish. We knew his motive. I still think there is a lot Cole isn't telling us which makes me hesitate to start to bat for his team. Unlike Nikki, I do believe in redemption and I hope Cole can scrounge some up. 

I love the idea of redemption and heroes and choices that Ashton explores in her writing. Does redemption exist? Can we really ever be truly forgiven for the things we have independently chosen to do in our lives? It is an amazingly thought-provoking topic that had my mind turning the entire time. I thought I believed one way but looking at Nikki's plight I feel as if I was swayed a bit...or at least opened up my mind to a different opinion. I do, however, believe that heroes do exist and it is our choices that make us so. Actions speak louder than words and all that :)

Like I said, I do not know heaps about Greek mythology but I loved that this was a re-telling because I felt like I learned something while reading and I kiiiind of want to go pick up a book about Greek mythology right now...just sayin'. I adored the writing of this novel. At times the outcomes felt a little predictable and I seemed to come to the conclusions a fair bit before the characters did but it almost makes the reading of it that much more enjoyable, like I had a little secret or something. 

I cannot WAIT to read Everbound but I think I'll take a pitstop with Neverfall first...I mean, c'mon, a novella with Cole as the narrator, how can I resist? Maybe I'll get some of my redemption needs sooner than I thought...


  1. Great review, thanks for sharing! I really liked this book too and am exactly the same about the whole Greek mythology thing - I keep telling myself that I will go and get a book about it because it's just so fascinating :)

    1. Right! I can't get enough, I just love stuff like that!

  2. YES!! :D I'm so glad you liked it!! I absolutely loved this book! And YAY Greek Mythology! I'm a bit of a self-proclaimed Greek Mythology geek ;) I love Jack as well, he's amazing. And I agree with you: I'm usually all for the heroine taking action, but with Nikki it didn't bother me because her strength lies elsewhere. I loved the moments between her and Jack and THAT ENDING! GAH!

    1. Of course we would agree!! The ending is un.real. I won that ARC of Everbound and the second book is so good!! I think I'm more of a fan of Cole than Jack though...what are your thoughts?

    2. After Everneath I'm Team Jack ;) But I pretty much always root for the good guy, maybe Everbound will change my mind?

  3. I LOVE LOVE LOVE Everneath. LOVE it. BUT I'm a HUGE mythology geek. The biggest. And my favorite is Persephone and Hades, followed by Cupid and Psyche. I tend to try and read mythology retellings when I can. And this one is really great.

    I LOVE Jack in the story and OH the heartache! I'm about to re-read this one via audiobook (it's sitting there waiting for me and I have Neverfall waiting too) and I. Can't. Wait. And you're so right about these covers. I think this is a really neat spin on a classic myth, but I am really interested in seeing where Brodi Ashton takes the story from here. SO GLAD you finally read it and liked it. YAY!!

  4. I've been wanting to read this! It just hit me that it was a re-telling of Hades and Persphone.. I'm a big fan of Greek mythology so I'm curious to see how this retelling goes. Great review!


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