Thursday, February 6, 2014

Review: Evertrue by Brodi Ashton

Evertrue by Brodi Ashton
Published: January 21, 2014
Publisher: Blazer + Bray
368 (Hardcover)
Everneath #3
My Rating:
3.5 of 5 stars

Now that Nikki has rescued Jack, all she wants is to be with him and graduate high school. But Cole tricked Nikki into feeding off him, and she’s begun the process of turning into an Everliving herself... which means she must feed on a Forfeit soon — or die.

Terrified for her survival, Nikki and Jack begin a desperate attempt to reverse the process using any means possible. Even Cole, who they expected to fight them at every turn, has become an unlikely ally — but how long can it last? Nikki needs to feed on Cole to survive, Cole needs Nikki to gain the throne in the Everneath, Jack needs Nikki because she is everything to him — and together, they must travel back to the Underworld to undo Nikki’s fate and make her mortal once more. But Cole isn’t the only one with plans for Nikki: the Queen has not forgotten Nikki’s treachery, and she wants her destroyed for good. Will Nikki be forced to spend eternity in the Underworld, or does she have what it takes to bring down the Everneath once and for all?

In this stunning conclusion to the Everneath trilogy, Brodi Ashton evokes the resiliency of the human spirit and the indomitable power of true love. 

I was very nervous about starting this book. I had seen a few people rate it really low and call it a disappointment, so I tried not to get my hopes up that the final installment in this series would live up to my expectations. While Evertrue may not have been as enthralling as the previous two, it is still an enjoyable read.

It took awhile for the story to get going because the beginning was mainly Jack and Nikki reassuring each other that everything would be ok and that they love each other. After most of that was over, I could barely put the book down. Mainly because Cole was a huge part of the book. I wasn't a fan of what happened to him near the beginning of the book, but I still enjoyed his character. The mythology and the plot were definitely the best parts of the book but I don't want to talk too much about the plot because that would spoil the book.

I don't remember ever having a problem with Jack and Nikki's relationship, but I couldn't stand how cheesy it all was. There were numerous mentions of them having each others hearts and how they wouldn't be able to live without each other. Nikki also excessively mentioned Jack's biceps. I had to put the book down a few times when she mentioned his biceps because I couldn't take the story seriously. I get that Jack is now very muscular because of the Tunnels, but I don't need to be reminded of his biceps every time he has to do something involving his strength. In fact I could care less about Jack and his jealousy because honestly there's nothing truly likable about the character, but there's also nothing to really hate.

The one problem I had with Nikki is that her emotions change so rapidly. I never completely sure what she was actually feeling. Sometimes she would think that Cole wasn't so bad and then other times she would hate him. Sometimes she would think about sacrificing herself and then she would decide against it, over and over again. At first it wasn't so bad but it continued to happen and it just got old. Despite this problem, I still liked Nikki because she made sure that Jack didn't make her decisions for her and she cared about the people around her.

As I said before I was disappointed about what happened to Cole near the beginning of the book because it felt almost like it was just an easy way for Nikki to realize that she still liked Cole. Thankfully what happened to him wasn't permanent, otherwise I doubt the ending would have been as emotional as it was. One of the good things that did come out of it was that Cole was pretty funny, even though he wasn't trying to be.

The ending was very bittersweet and it felt like the best way to end the series because in the end it was their choices that led to it, not someone forcing another character to do it. This series had it's ups and downs, but it's still worth reading.

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Review: Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea by April Genevieve Tucholke

Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea by April Genevieve Tucholke
Published: August 15, 2013
360 (Hardcover)
Between #1
My Rating:
1.5 of 5 stars

You stop fearing the devil when you’re holding his hand…

Nothing much exciting rolls through Violet White’s sleepy, seaside town… until River West comes along. River rents the guest house behind Violet’s crumbling estate, and as eerie, grim things start to happen, Violet begins to wonder about the boy living in her backyard.

Is River just a crooked-smiling liar with pretty eyes and a mysterious past? Or could he be something more?

Violet’s grandmother always warned her about the Devil, but she never said he could be a dark-haired boy who takes naps in the sun, who likes coffee, who kisses you in a cemetery... who makes you want to kiss back.
Violet’s already so knee-deep in love, she can’t see straight. And that’s just how River likes it.

Blending faded decadence and the thrilling dread of gothic horror, April Genevieve Tucholke weaves a dreamy, twisting contemporary romance, as gorgeously told as it is terrifying—a debut to watch.

*A few spoilers ahead

First off have you seen that cover? Gorgeous. No wonder why I picked this book up in the first place. It also got quite a lot of love when it first came out so I had to read it. Did I read the same book as everyone else because I feel like I'm in the minority here when I say that this book and I didn't get along.

It all started when I realized that there was nothing mildly redeemable about the characters. There was no substance to any of the side characters, especially Luke and Sunshine. The main character is weird and not in the good way and to top it all off the love interest is a creep. The book was packed to the brim with instances of Violet blurting out the most random things and it almost never made sense, but none of the characters except for Luke seemed to notice that she didn't know how to hold a conversation and that she brought up irrelevant topics.

There was also absolutely no reason for Luke to be that nasty to his sister. I get it, siblings fight, but there wasn't a reason for Luke to hate on Violet. I kept waiting for some sort of childhood flashback to explain his hatred but there wasn't any. It was just there for the author's convenience and to show that the characters developed by the end. The same issue was present with Sunshine. She was written as a self-absorbed, bitchy girl but it's not like this added to the story, in fact it detracted from it because most of the time I just wanted to her go away.

The romance made me cringe. Their relationship developed unnaturally fast and I felt like I had no reason to root for them. The way River talked to Violet was very strange. If a guy started talking to me like that I would avoid that relationship at all costs. Occasionally Violet would start thinking logically about how dangerous River was, but then she would decide she didn't care because she felt in her heart that she should keep giving him chances and that he doesn't mean to kill people, even though he tells her that he does not think killing is morally wrong and that some people deserve to die. He also can't seem to stop lying and Violet is aware that everything that comes out of his mouth is a lie, yet she still chooses to believe what he says. If that's not alarming then I don't know what is.

The entire book felt like a jumble of literary and movie references that did very little to advance the plot. It also seemed like the author tried to mash too many gothic or horror story ideas into one book. The whole thing with Jack and the kids in the cemetery was very strange and it felt out of place. The villain of the story didn't even make much of an appearance until the end of the book. I saw a few people talking about how great the twist was at the end of the book, but I knew what the twist was since the mention of siblings and Texas.

Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea was a major disappointment because it had so much potential, but it was executed poorly.