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Book Review

Publisher's Note:

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…


by Brodi Ashton

Overall Book Review:

Although I found the beginning a little slow and confusing, Everneath quickly became a fast and engaging read. The fast-paced action and cliffhanger chapter endings made it a hard book to put down, and I found myself reading the whole second half in one sitting! I was intrigued by Brodi Ashton’s re-imagining of ancient Greek and Egyptian mythology. I also appreciated the fact that Everneath is somewhat unique in the world of YA literature—although it is something of a paranormal romance and much of it takes place in a high school setting, Ashton’s characters and plot are more original than most things I’ve read in this genre. I was pleasantly surprised by Nikki Beckett, the protagonist, and her willingness to take responsibility for her own actions and situation. Although at times I had trouble connecting with her, for the most part, I found Nikki a sympathetic and likeable character. I enjoyed Ashton’s twist on the popular love triangle, as well. I also loved the ending, which was bittersweet and very different from what I had expected!

However, I did have some quibbles with Everneath. Up until the end, I felt like I had a hard time buying the central romance; throughout the book, Nikki makes frequent mention of how much she loves her boyfriend, Jack, and how lucky she feels to be with him, but I didn’t feel like I really saw the love between them until the very end. I found myself wishing that Ashton had shown us a little more of what made Nikki and Jack perfect for each other, rather than just telling us several times throughout the story that they were. I found myself wanting more backstory about the Everneath, and about how Cole and the other Everlivings made the choice to pursue eternal life. (Maybe we’ll get a little more of that in the sequel.) In general, I felt like Everneath was a good, quick read, but could have benefited from a little more depth and nuance.

Overall, however, I enjoyed the book and am looking forward to reading the sequel. Everneath would be a great read for teens and adults who enjoy current trends in paranormal romances and want a unique take on familiar themes.

Content Analysis:

Profanity/Language: 7 mild obscenities, 1 scatalogical term, 1 anatomical term

Violence/Gore: Two references to fights that happened previously (no detail). A character threatens another. A character is given a magical wound that they describe as feeling like the stab of a knife (there is no blood or gore). A brief fight breaks out. A character is injured in a rafting accident and blood is described. Throughout the story, there are references to paranormal attacks that are somewhat creepy in a fantasy way.

Sex/Nudity: A girl wonders if her boyfriend wants to have sex. A girl suggests to her friend that maybe her boyfriend wants to have sex. (Both of these references are very subtle.) A girl wishes her mother was around to talk to her about “things like sex.” A girl is caught coming out of a boy’s dorm room and it is implied that they might have had sex (but the reader isn’t sure). Throughout the story there are several instances of flirtation, romance, and kissing, including 4 extended scenes that are a page or longer.

Mature Subject Matter:

Death of a parent, finding redemption, sacrifice.

Alcohol / Drug Use:

A character is suspected of using drugs. A place is described as smelling of alcohol and there is a reference to characters (possibly underage) drinking. A character is described as drunk on a few occasions. A reference is made to a character having spiked the punch at a party when he was in high school.

Overall Book Rating

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About the Reviewer

As a kid, I used to tell people that I wanted to be a “professional book reviewer” when I grew up (along with writer/ballerina/figure skater/mom). I thought that any profession that involved the full-time reading of books was my idea of heaven. Getting the chance to review books is a little dream come true!