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.
Complicated feelings about this one.
- A mythology-based story that I don’t want to throw against the wall! This is super rare.
- The plot was pretty interesting, and the world has been thought out. Things stay pretty consistent… but are not sufficient. More on that below.
- I like love triangles in general (don’t hate!) and this one is particularly well balanced. The good guy/bad guy roles are stereotypical (high school football star vs rock musician dressed in black) but the affection each has for Nikki shines through.
- While the world is thought out I had a bunch of niggles and questions that aren’t addressed. If Feeding fuels an Everliving for 100 years, why does Cole feel so drained within a year of topping up? It seems like everyone Feeds at the same time so all kinds of Everlivings on the Surface, as well as the people they Feed on, disappear from Earth at once. Wouldn’t that sudden spate of missing persons cases get noticed? What is the point of letting Forfeits return for an arbitrary six months? And so on.
- On a similar note, the characters’ motivations are muddled or unclear.
- The book could have done with a better edit. It felt like people jumped around in their actions – like someone sitting is somehow lying in bed half a page later. I didn’t spend time dissecting but it was still there.
- The writing didn’t get in the way but it didn’t add anything to the story, either. The prose is simple, even for YA.
- Each section starts off mentioning not only a time reference (good as the plot bounces around) but also a wholly unnecessary place reference. From chapter nine:
My bedroom. Four months left.
“Time’s flying for you, Nik.” Cole was sitting in the darkest corner of my bedroom….
- I don’t remember a single person of color or minority character of any sort. It’s set in Utah so my hopes weren’t high, but still.
I don’t see myself continuing the series as the jacket copy for the next two books tells me pretty much everything I want to know plot-wise. I would like to read Ashton in another context, and am excited to see she’s one of the authors of My Lady Jane. It’s currently on hold at my library, so hopefully it’ll arrive before too long….