Melissa Prange's Reviews > Everneath

Everneath by Brodi Ashton
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's review
Feb 02, 2012

it was ok
bookshelves: young-adult
Read in January, 2012

Brodi Ashton's Everneath is a modern day retelling of the myth of Orpheus and Eurydice and the first book in a series centered around Persephone and her underworld kingdom.

This young adult novel tells the story of Nikki Beckett, a teenage girl with only six months left until she is forced to return to the underworld or Everneath, When the story opens, she is just waking up from a hundred year sleep in which an Everling, Cole, has absorbed her energy by stealing her emotions. Few survive this process and even fewer come through unscathed, but Nikki is special, making it through with some pieces of her personality in tack. While Cole wishes her to join him as an Everling, she chooses to return to the surface, hoping to rejoin her family and reunite with boyfriend, Jack. Although a hundred years has passed for her, only six months have passed for her family and friends. Six months, however, is long enough for everything to have changed. When she returns, her father is suspicious and angry, and her friends are emotionally scarred by her disappearance. Nikki hopes to spend her remaining time healing the hurts she caused by leaving and also in finding a way to avoid returning to the Everneath.

Everneath is a brilliant concept with its basis set firmly in the myths of Persephone and Eurydice. With the Everneath, Brodi Ashton creates a suitably scary and original underworld filled with ghostly sludge and hive-like caverns. Her concept of skimming emotions for energy appears to be an interesting new spin on the ever popular vampire genre. Overall, she successfully takes a popular myth and creates her own original spin on it. The difficulty with Everneath, however, does not lie in the concept or in Ashton’s world creation. Ashton creates a very vivid world but, unfortunately, chooses to populate it with flat characters. Our heroine, Nikki Beckett, has no personality, and the male leads, Cole and Jack, are uncomfortably abusive and domineering. Nikki has no hobbies or interests outside Jack and knitting. She does nothing to forward the story and instead, stops things dead by stalwartly refusing to do anything. She stands by while Jack and Cole battle over her and do all the legwork. These three characters have been seen in various incarnations since Twilight, but here they are at their most uninteresting to date.

Brodi Ashton tries but ultimately fails to make Everneath a truly compelling debut. Nikki Beckett's dullness makes it impossible for this book to succeed; and since there are plenty of young adult novels with interesting heroines, I would recommend readers seek those out rather than looking for signs of life in Everneath.
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Mandy I have no idea how you could describe either Jack or Cole as "abusive" or "domineering". As for the rest, you're probably right, though I liked the book anyway.

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