fantasy book reviews science fiction book reviewsAlyson Noël Immortals 1. EvermoreEvermore by Alyson Noël

Evermore is the first in the Immortals series by Alyson Noël. Immortals are a bit like vampires… but not. Ever Bloom is a teenage girl who becomes entangled in the world of the Immortals.

Ever’s backstory feels pieced together from other works. Like Buffy Summers, she was one of the popular girls at her old school, but after a disaster, has to start over at a new school where she’s considered a freak and only has two friends. In Ever’s case, the disaster is a tragedy in which her family died; Ever survived with a scar on her forehead a la Harry Potter. One of the reasons she’s socially awkward is that, similar to Sookie Stackhouse, she’s telepathic and can “hear” people’s unflattering thoughts, and she falls in love with the first guy whose mind she can’t read. And in a plotline reminiscent of Twilight, the guy is a gorgeous immortal creature who is assigned to work with Ever in class; they begin a hot-and-cold relationship; and Ever utterly falls apart when Damen is absent from her life.

Ever’s survivor’s guilt — and how it affects her sister, Riley, who is lingering in Ever’s life as a ghost — is the most interesting aspect of Evermore. Unfortunately, the middle of the book sags and loses focus, too caught up in mundane scenes of cattiness and drama and Ever’s angst about whether Damen really likes her or if he’s more into his ex and/or the local queen bee (and he’s certainly flaky enough to raise those questions).

Flakiness aside, Damen is so over the top that I almost think Noël is pulling our collective legs. He’s stunningly gorgeous and has been a model. He’s filthy rich. He has genius-level talent in almost every field; for example, it’s implied that he taught Picasso to paint. He’s been friends with pretty much everyone who’s been famous in the last 600 years, from Shakespeare to the Beatles. One wonders why he’d need to go to high school at all. (The obvious answer is “to pick up teenage girls,” and indeed he does eventually reveal that he enrolled to get close to Ever.)

The supernatural plot becomes more prominent at the end of the book, but has major issues. There’s too much exposition, for one; the villain monologues and gloats at great length, and Damen has some infodumping to do as well. Then, the final showdown is resolved in an overly cheesy way.

Evermore is also plagued by “telling” prose, stereotypical secondary characters, and confusing metaphysics. Bad editing, too; for example, Ever’s late dog changes sex from one paragraph to the next. I enjoyed the interplay between Ever and her sister’s ghost, but cannot recommend this book.

~Kelly Lasiter

Alyson Noël Immortals 1. EvermoreEvermore — I tried reading this on audio. I felt like I was being tortured. It’s so bad that it feels like a parody.

~Kat Hooper

Immortals — (2009-2011) Young adult. Publisher: Since a horrible accident claimed the lives of her family, sixteen-year-old Ever can see auras, hear people’s thoughts, and know a person’s life story by touch. Going out of her way to shield herself from human contact to suppress her abilities has branded her as a freak at her new high school — but everything changes when she meets Damen Auguste. Ever sees Damen and feels an instant recognition. He is gorgeous, exotic and wealthy, and he holds many secrets. Damen is able to make things appear and disappear, he always seems to know what she’s thinking — and he’s the only one who can silence the noise and the random energy in her head. She doesn’t know who he really is — or what he is. Damen equal parts light and darkness, and he belongs to an enchanted new world where no one ever dies.

Alyson Noel Immortals 1. Evermore 2. Blue Moon 3. Shadowland 4. Dark Flame Alyson Noel Immortals 1. Evermore 2. Blue Moon 3. Shadowland 4. Dark Flame Alyson Noel Immortals 1. Evermore 2. Blue Moon 3. Shadowland 4. Dark Flame Alyson Noel Immortals 1. Evermore 2. Blue Moon 3. Shadowland 4. Dark Flame 5. Night Star Alyson Noel Immortals 1. Evermore 2. Blue Moon 3. Shadowland 4. Dark Flame 5. Night Star Alyson Noel Immortals 1. Evermore 2. Blue Moon 3. Shadowland 4. Dark Flame 5. Night Star 6. Everlasting


  • Kelly Lasiter

    KELLY LASITER, with us since July 2008, is a mild-mannered academic administrative assistant by day, but at night she rules over a private empire of tottering bookshelves. Kelly is most fond of fantasy set in a historical setting (a la Jo Graham) or in a setting that echoes a real historical period (a la George RR Martin and Jacqueline Carey). She also enjoys urban fantasy and its close cousin, paranormal romance, though she believes these subgenres’ recent burst in popularity has resulted in an excess of dreck. She is a sucker for pretty prose (she majored in English, after all) and mythological themes.

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  • Kat Hooper

    KAT HOOPER, who started this site in June 2007, earned a Ph.D. in neuroscience and psychology at Indiana University (Bloomington) and now teaches and conducts brain research at the University of North Florida. When she reads fiction, she wants to encounter new ideas and lots of imagination. She wants to view the world in a different way. She wants to have her mind blown. She loves beautiful language and has no patience for dull prose, vapid romance, or cheesy dialogue. She prefers complex characterization, intriguing plots, and plenty of action. Favorite authors are Jack Vance, Robin Hobb, Kage Baker, William Gibson, Gene Wolfe, Richard Matheson, and C.S. Lewis.

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