Sunday, October 31, 2010

Nevermore by Kelly Creagh

Title: Nevermore
Author: Kelly Creagh
Publisher: Atheneum Books for Young Readers
Release Date: August 31, 2010
Source: Purchased
Buy the Book: Amazon / Book Depository / Indigo
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 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.

His life depends on it.

Nevermore is a long book, but it’s not a long book that drags on. Despite the 500+ pages I found myself not wanting to put the book even if I knew reading it in one sitting would prove somewhat difficult to do. This was such a great read, one that enjoyed a whole lot more than I originally thought I would. The story was absolutely amazing and I just loved how Edgar Allan Poe’s works and life are incorporated in the story. Nevermore is actually really hard to describe and I don’t want to to ruin it for those who haven’t read it.

Isobel Lanley is your typical high school cheerleader who seems to have it all. That is until she is paired with Varen Nethers for an English project due on the day of Halloween--and of the big football game. When she starts spending more time with Varen, Isobel finds herself discovering a whole new world and weird things start happening all around. Not only that but Isobel’s life completely changes. Her old friends leave her behind but she finds new ones in unexpected places. And lest expected of all, she falls for Varen without even understanding how it could have happened. Things reach a whole new level on the night of Halloween when Isobel ends up in a whole other world trying to save Varen from being trapped there eternally.

I’ll be honest, Isobel’s attitude got on my nerves at first but as the story moved forward my feelings for her changed. The more she got away from her cheerleader, football and popular friends the more I liked her. I also liked that she wasn’t completely accepting of the the paranormal world that was opening itself up to her. But my favorite part of Isobel was just seeing the change happen in her. There was really a visible evolution in her and one that I really liked seeing. Isobel went from being your typical high school cheerleader to being someone who cared about something other than football and tumbling passes. Don’t get me wrong, I have nothing against cheerleaders, but they are often so stereotyped in books. It was really nice seeing Isobel break out of that stereotype.

I’ll admit, Varen was kind of creepy at first. But he grew on me, like they always tend to do. I wish that we got to find out more about him but the focus seemed to be mostly on Isobel and how she pictured him. Varen is a hard character to describe. He seems all dark, mysterious and brooding but once you scratch the surface you see there is a lot more to him than that. In the end he turns out to be a great guy, the only thing that bugged me was that he was trying to push Isobel away towards the end of the book. I get that it was to protect her and I love him for that but I just felt bad for Isobel. I liked Varen, I just want to find out more about him. But I guess I have to wait for book two for that.

The story itself was really intriguing. I liked all the elements about Edgar Allan Poe’s works and life being included in the story, it really made different from the other books I’ve read recently. It was also quite refreshing to read a book that was narrated in the third person. I couldn’t even remember what was the last book I read that was like that, so it was a nice change of pace. As good as the story, I have to admit that I found it a little slow paced at first. It took me a while to get into the story but once I did I was having trouble putting the book down.

Nevermore was a great read and I’m happy I gave it a shot. There were so many things I liked about it and there are other parts of the story that I wish were more developed. There is a book two on the way so hopefully all of that will get resolved there.

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  1. I really loved this book, I wasn't sure I was going to since both main characters seemed so stereotypical, but they shed that image pretty quickly I thought. I can't wait to learn more about Varen in book 2, and I agree with you that this one is quite different from most of the YA I've read recently and that made it really fun to read. Loved reading your thoughts on it!

  2. I've been seeing this one a lot, but I never got around to actually get myself a copy. I'll move it up my priority list though. Thanks for the review!

  3. I still need to read this! The size, and like Jenny said, the stereotypical characters have forced me to keep pushing this book back. I guess it is time I pull it to the front again :-)

  4. I've got this in my TBR pile so I'm glad you enjoyed it. I think the fact that Varen came off as a bit creepy first says a lot about how good of a writer Creagh is. Thanks for the review!


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