Publisher: Balzer + Bray
Series or Stand Alone: Book 1 in the Everneath trilogy
Summary: Last spring, Nikki Beckett vanished, sucked into an underworld known as the Everneath, where immortals Feed on the emotions of despairing humans. Now she's returned- to her old life, her family, her friends- before being 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 months reconnecting with her boyfriend, Jack, the one person she loves more than anything. But there's a problem: Cole, the smoldering immortal who first enticed her to the Everneath, has followed Nikki to the mortal world. And he'll do whatever it takes to bring her back- this time as his queen.
As Nikki's time grows short and her relationships begin slipping from her grasp, she's 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...
Warning: this one is going to be a longer review. I adored this book, and sometimes loving a book causes me to blather on about its awesomeness. Seriously. My friend asked me on the train today what The Hunger Games was about and I didn’t shut up for like five minutes straight. I found Everneath on the debut author list. I was instantly intrigued by its basis in the Persephone myth. I also really like the cover, despite the fact that it’s a girl in a fancy dress. Hate all you want, but the red dress is incredibly eye-catching. And it’s disappearing into smoke! This isn’t the run of the mill fancy dress, this one’s got character.
It’s been six months since Nikki Beckett disappeared without a word. What her loved ones don’t know is that she is in the Everneath, the Underworld in which Immortals like Cole take human subjugates for one hundred years in order to take human emotions to sustain themselves. Nikki’s all but lost--except that she has the memory of a human face that she can’t name, but knows she loves. That is enough for Nikki to retain a bit of emotion and choose to take six months more as a human on Earth rather than become an immortal. Once she’s back in her old life, she has sixth months to say goodbye to her father, her brother, her best friend--and the boy whose face saved her soul, Jack, before she will be dragged back to the Everneath for good.
I loved the story. i read it really fast because I needed to know what happened. I’m wildly curious about what the second one will bring, but I’m going to have to wait quite some time before I get that. The characters were all very different, but not in a so-quirky-you-want-to-die way.
Example: Cole. Cole was not the overly dreamy bad boy who is super evil or the brooding bad boy that only wants to be GOOD but can’t find his way. Cole is concerned with himself and his own ambitions in the Everneath. He very obviously does care for Nikki, but not enough to stop his plans. In a way, Cole’s immortal self is incredibly human. Also, I LOVED that Ashton made the Immortals that lured human subjugates to the Everneath rock stars.
Then there’s Jack. Oh, Jack. His devotion to Nikki was so endearing, considering she tried not to give him the time of day upon her return. I was concerned that he was in danger of being defined by his feelings for Nikki, but Ashton crafted a well-rounded character that was believably selfless and compassionate, especially when considering the treatment high school quarterbacks usually get in young adult books.
The mythology behind the book was very well-imagined, especially since Ashton combined the Hades/Persephone myth with that of Orpheus and Eurydice. Rather than there being a singular “Hades” figure that lures a Persephone subject, there are a host of Immortals that maintain their lives by luring humans into the Everneath and feeding off their emotions for one hundred years (or six Earth months). The situation that occurs after that provides the setup for this book and created a great story for Nikki that goes between hopelessness and hope.
All and all, I adored Brodi Ashton’s debut and am wholeheartedly looking forward to the next installment. If you’re looking for a cool reimagining of a Greek myth, look no further!
Rating: 5 - fantastic!