Review: Everless by Sara Holland πŸŒŸπŸŒŸ

** This review is SPOILER FREE**

Usually when I review a book it’s because I love it, unfortunately today is not that day. I wanted to review Everless, not to bash it, simply because I felt like I wanted to expand in the thoughts I expressed in my wrap-up.

Let’s start with a positive, shall we?
I love the design of this book, from cover to cover it is undeniably gorgeous. If we just take a look at the dust jacket to begin with, and we have this stunning image of an 35883046hourglass, representing the importance of time within this world, and this narrative, but also within that we have the image of a girl, dripping down into a grand house. I can’t imagine I am overthinking this image, in the sense that it represents the rich of Everless bleeding the time from the poorer villagers. Maybe even going as far as to see Jules, our protagonist represented in this image? But regardless of the cover image, taking the dust jacket off we have a lovely red, naked cover, with silver embossing along the spine. Finally, and my favourite aspect of the book is the end papers, which feature the repeated motif of a red snake, which becomes a repeated image thought the story, and is significant to the plot toward the end.

I mentioned that I am not here to bash a book that so many people, especially Sara, have put their hearts and souls into, however I have always, and will always, strive to be completely honest with you guys. Therefore, I hope no one takes anything I am about to say to heart, these are just my opinions, the opinions of one person.

I did not like Everless overall, and that was down to two things, the plot and the characterisation, one of which is more important to me than the other, but I’ll explain that in due corse. For now, let’s focus on the plot.

The concept of this world was super intriguing to me, a fantasy world in which it is possible to extract time from blood, and therefore time is currency in Sempera. Throughout the narrative this is an important aspect, it’s not cast to the side and forgotten, and I especially enjoyed a seven in which we see these blood-irons being extracted and formed. I found the concept to resemble a form of vampire, new and exciting, in the way that it is possible to consume time, and extend your own life, by dissolving a blood-iron in a hot beverage. And while I really enjoyed this aspect, I feel like it could have been taken a lot further, though I understand that being a series, you might want to hold back a little.

 

Despite my enjoyment over that aspect, what I did not enjoy was the overarching plot, the one that was driving the book forward. Obviously, I don’t want to spoil anyone, so I am going to be especially vague. In all honesty I found that the tale of the Sorceress and the Alchemist was shovelled down my throat at every opportunity, losing any delicacy that it could have had. It also felt so familiar to me for about half of the book, until it dawned on me where I’d seen it before; Wicked Like a Wildfire by Lana Popovic, another FairyLoot book. I didn’t enjoy it that time either. In both cases, the plot felt far too concerned with ensure that all these dots were connected that it forgot about the present of the characters concerned.

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Which brings us along nicely to talk about the characterisation, or lack thereof. I mentioned earlier that one aspect concerns me more than the other, and I was referring to characterisation. There is a simple reason for this and it’s because I prefer character driven books, over plot driven ones, meaning that although I was not the biggest fan of the narrative, if the characters had been special, if they had given me butterflies, I would have forgiven it.

Unfortunately or main character, Jules, out narrator did not pull me in. I’m not saying she was abad character, she just wasn’t for me, and most of the time I could not understand the decisions she makes. I had to give up trying to understand her pretty early, and just roll with the punches, which is not the end of the world. In terms a narrator she was perfectly okay, she just isn’t going to make an impression on me like other characters might.

I also want to talk quickly about Roan and Liam, the Gerling brothers, who most intrigued me about this books. I was expecting a spectacular love triangle, a Steffan-Elena-Damon situation, but again the whole situation was stagnant. Liam probably fared the best out of the two, simply because he ticked all the boxes for mysterious, brooding, bad boy. Roan, however, poor Roan. Other than the fact that he was nice, I cannot remember a single thing about the boy. It became apparent at the conclusion that he was a cookie cutter characters, there to serve a very particular purpose.

As I hate to leave things on a negative note, I will finish off this review with another positive, and that was the pacing. The pacing of Everless was great, and other than the cover, my favourite part about this book. I sometimes think that the pacing is the hardest thing to get right in a book, and Sara did an excellent job in that department.

All in all I gave this book just the two stars, out of a possible five, but if you enjoyed Wicked Like a Wildfire, I really think you’ll enjoy Everless.

Have you read Everless, and if so what did you think? DO you agree with me, or do you think I was too harsh? If you haven’t read it, what book let you down recently, and why?

Thanks for reading!

Victoria

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