by Kelly Creagh
Nevermore series; book I
So many bloggers have said it’s definitely not the run-of-the-mill YA paranormal, something I avoid to an unreasonable degree* . And I know it’s unnecessary to build up my expectations but I jumped at the chance to read it (on a Kindle too!)
Cheerleader Isobel Lanley is horrified when she is paired with Varen Nethers for an English project, which is due—so unfair—on the day of the rival game. Cold and aloof, sardonic and sharp-tongued, Varen makes it clear he’d rather not have anything to do with her either. But when Isobel discovers strange writing in his journal, she can’t help but give this enigmatic boy with the piercing eyes another look.
Soon, Isobel finds herself making excuses to be with Varen. Steadily pulled away from her friends and her possessive boyfriend, Isobel ventures deeper and deeper into the dream world Varen has created through the pages of his notebook, a realm where the terrifying stories of Edgar Allan Poe come to life.
As her world begins to unravel around her, Isobel discovers that dreams, like words, hold more power than she ever imagined, and that the most frightening realities are those of the mind. Now she must find a way to reach Varen before he is consumed by the shadows of his own nightmares.
My Expectations: extremely high, I've actually only seemed to hear great things about it.
Delivery: I enjoyed it more than I usually do with paranormals, but I was slightly disappointed I didn't like it more.
Put-down-ability: 3/10 (yay!)
Nevermore was solid. It has some really great parts and some forgettable parts, I thought overall it’s a book I enjoyed but won’t necessarily be eagerly recommending. The writing style is fantastic; it took me a chapter to realize that it was actually written in 3rd person (a pet peeve of mine) because I instantly connected with the main character Isobel and everything flowed so well. I thought despite some wildly clichéd plot devices (being partnered together for a project, for example) Creagh stayed away from cringe-territory and the story worked.
Isobel was a character I really grew to cheer for; I loved how she’s a strong character but not in the super-obvious way. She stood up for what she believed in and liked (such as saying she enjoyed cheerleading, but that didn’t make her vapid) and her romance with Varen became more believable and fun to read as the book went along. Declarations of love did lead to eye-rolling, but not excessively**. I'm just not huge on dramatics, I guess.
Now on to the paranormal aspect. It’s definitely unique and I loved the usage of Poe throughout the novel because it brought the eerie factor in, which was appreciated. I don't want to completely spoil what paranormal-ness it includes, but I really liked how it didn’t overwhelm the book, which is a big bonus. I liked the idea of the realms though I did feel sometimes descriptions of it was overdone and weighed down the scene. I felt like I had to trudge through parts to get to the focus of what was happening, and especially during action scenes. I liked it, but didn’t love it.
The pacing was something I think was based more on preference, but I thought the first half was a lot easier to get through than the action-packed ending. I’ll admit the 500+ pages is quite daunting and it did feel too long at times, but ultimately it’s not too terrible and it was enjoyable.
Nevermore spins a unique tale of blond cheerleader and goth boy, yet it defies stereotypes with strong characters and an interesting paranormal aspect.
Rating in HP Terms: Acceptable
Recommended for: eager and reluctant paranormal fans unafraid of long books! :)
Acknowledgements: lovely, 3.5/5
7.9/10 - because... I'll fill in this part later :P I'm dead tired and wanted to get a post up... Just read my review!
*oh hello, review pile, long time no see
**I’m cynical, deal with it.