Everneath by Brodi Ashton
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.
I am kicking myself for waiting so long to read this. Everneath was just fantastic and I am dying to get my hands on a copy of Everbound! This is one of the best debuts I have read all year. Brodi Ashton has written a romantic, heart-pounding, and intense novel with Everneath and I loved every minute of it.
Everneath started off with a bang and continued at that fast pace until the very end. Nikki was such a likable character and I felt terrible for all she was dealing with. Nikki was someone I could see myself wanting to be friends with in the real world and her character was so well-developed. Everything Nikki had to face in Everneath showed how strong and independent she was. Nikki was not afraid to fight for what she believed in and she was a loyal friend. Each of the other characters were very rounded as well and the reader truly got to know each of them. The other two main characters, Cole and Jack, were very different from each other, but they both only wanted the best for Nikki. I liked seeing the backstories of how Nikki got to know each of them and seeing how everything came together.
The plot was extremely unique and Ashton incorporated the mythology in such a new and refreshing way. Several different myths were brought into play in Everneath and it was interesting to see the comparisons between them and what Nikki was experiencing. There were quite a few twists and turns that kept me engaged and several things completely shocked me. I had a hard time setting Everneath down, especially towards the end when Nikki's time was running out.
Everneath had been sitting on my shelf for months and I finally picked it up over my winter break and am so glad I did. It was action-packed and exciting, but it also had great romance. I thoroughly enjoyed Everneath and am so glad I finally picked it up. The ending left me running to Amazon to pre-order the sequel and I can't wait to see what's next for all of the characters. I highly recommend this book! Plus who wouldn't want that gorgeous cover on their shelf?
Overall: 4.5 out of 5 stars
January 24, 2012/Balzer + Bray/370 Pages/Young Adult/Book One
Source: Publisher (ARC)