Monday 17 November 2014

Book Review - Everneath

Author: Brodi Ashton
Series: Everneath #1
Genres: Mythology, Fantasy | Young Adult
Release Date: 24th January 2012
Publishers: Balzhar + Bray
Pages: 370
Source: Gifted
Buy From: Amazon | Book Depository | Barnes and Noble | Waterstones
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.

Everneath is a book that managed to do something very few ever do.. it managed it sneak up on me. What on earth do you mean Amanda? Put it this way, I definitely, at one point in time, was not feeling this novel for a number of reason I'll delve into soon, but somewhere along the line, somewhere I actually cannot pinpoint, something changed and the issues I had started with fizzled away to a point. This book snuck on me, managed to revel in this change of circumstances and left me wary of whether to continue..

You see, the first, I'd like to say half, of this novel didn't impress me very much at all. I wasn't taken or connected to the main character Nikki, I didn't appreciate what it was she was going through and I couldn't understand the reasons behind a number of her actions. Her relationship with both Cole and Jack was also something I could not begin to understand, leaving the only thing that could have rescued Everneath being it's plot and it's mythology links, yet even they didn't appear until much later into the novel. It was like reading a novel with no substance, no reason and no enjoyment and I remember passionately wondering whether I had made a fatal mistake in believing this novel would suit me. However, somewhere during my reading, something happened, I cannot place where, or how, or what it was, but I found myself connected, but to the characters, their emotions and to the mythology aspects, which happily surprised me.

What this novel did succeed at was deepening my love for mythology, which I really wasn't sure could get any deeper. The stories of Hades and Persephone and Orpheus and Eurydice are extremely rare in the fiction, let alone young adult fiction and very few people can accomplish mixing one myth with every day life, let alone two so seamlessly, but Ashton managed this superbly and I was extremely impressed. The little details concerning characters and their counterparts, right down the time Nikki spent below and above ground, they were really well done and I don't think I can fault those areas of Everneath, yet while the actual mythology aspects where great, the plot itself was not for a while. It felt a little, pointless and as though there was something they really could have been doing better, but this did, eventually, improve too.

The biggest issue I had with this novel was that the only character I really connected to on a good experiencing level was Jack and this really affected how I felt about the whole story. Nikki was not an easy character to connect to; she was withdrawn, even in her own perspective, there was little that could keep her happy, and while I enjoyed and appreciated her development, the fact that even by the end I was missing some important bonding with her was disappointing. Cole also was a difficult character to connect to, yet I found I had more of a related feeling to Cole than I did Nikki by the time I'd finished, and to have developed better bondings to the two romantic interests rather than the main character, to me, is a serious issue, and is the main feature that holds this novel back for me. Yet Jack, I really fell in love his character; I thought his connection to Nikki was realistic and honest, his emotions were true, he stood by her through all the crazy and I thought his personality as a loyal friend at least, was really wonderful to watch. I cannot say that he isn't a tad clingy and protective when he needn't be, but he was definitely the highlight of this novel for sure.

With a slow and slightly dry feeling plot, Everneath lacked in a number of areas for me, the biggest being Nikki, yet I found the love triangle to actually be enjoyable, I found the love interests to each have honest and genuine feelings for Nikki and thought that this made the connection to both of them much stronger. The mythological aspects were absolutely fantastic and I'm intrigued to see where Ashton would take this series next, if it wasn't for my fear of not relating to Nikki whatsoever. What was fantastic in this was exactly that, I was crying at some of those final scenes, I ended up that invested, but can final page emotions really be the push, or will I forever not know whether to give Nikki another chance? I think my relationship with Everneath is on a rocky bridge, and who knows, maybe I'll take the dive.


  1. Fantastic review, Amanda! You've made me reconsider reading this book at one point in my lifetime. :) I love the fact that this story contains inspiration from two of the lesser known Greek myths, but I'm sorry to hear you weren't a big fan of the MC.

    1. Thank you Ebony! I do think Nikki can be hit or miss, but it's definitely worth the read, it's a good one :)

  2. Fantastic review, Amanda! You've made me reconsider reading this book at one point in my lifetime. :) I love the fact that this story contains inspiration from two of the lesser known Greek myths, but I'm sorry to hear you weren't a big fan of the MC.

  3. I feel bad for not finishing this! I wasn't really drawn in by the beginning either, so I put it down, but having you say that it picks up after the second half makes me wonder if I should give it a second try. It's a shame that you found Nikki to be a bit hard to connect to (that was one of the main reasons I DNF'd as well!), but I am glad the mythological aspect suited you. Thanks for sharing, and, as always, fantastic review! <3

    ~ Zoe @ The Infinite To-Read Shelf

    1. It does! It sort of creeps up on you and you go from 'err, what?' to 'shush people, I'm reading' pretty quickly, and I think it's when you reach about a third in. Shame that it does that, but it's worth it! Thank you Zoe :)

  4. Great review! I'm very torn over this one now. Part of me wants to try it, but another is wary because of the really slow start. I don't know if I'd have the patience to wait for it to get good. It's also a bad sign that you connected more to the love interests than you did with Nikki. I really find it hard to enjoy a story when I can't connect to the main character.

    1. Maybe my love of Mythology made this more enjoyable, who knows! You'd probably dislike Nikki too, but Cole, you might find him worth it, might be worth a shot in the future, but not when in a slump or meh moment :)


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