Review: Everneath by Brodi Ashton

Title: Everneath

Author: Brodi Ashton

Publishing Information: Janurary 24, 2012 by HarperCollins

Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy, Paranormal

Series information: Book one in the Everneath trilogy

Format: Hardcover, 370 pages

Source: Borrowed from my local library

Recommended For: Fans  Greek Mythology and smoldery male leads

Last spring, Nikki Beckett vanished, sucked into an underworld known as the Everneath, where immortals Feed on the emotions of despairing humans. Now she’s returned- to her old life, her family, her friends- before being banished back to the underworld… this time forever.

She has six months before the Everneath comes to claim her, six months for good-byes she can’t find the words for, six months to find redemption, if it exists.

Nikki longs to spend these months reconnecting with her boyfriend, Jack, the one person she loves more than anything. But there’s a problem: Cole, the smoldering immortal who first enticed her to the Everneath, has followed Nikki to the mortal world. And he’ll do whatever it takes to bring her back- this time as his queen.

As Nikki’s time grows short and her relationships begin slipping from her grasp, she’s forced to make the hardest decision of her life: find a way to cheat fate and remain on the Surface with Jack or return to the Everneath and become Cole’s Queen


Nikki Beckett has returned after she has been presumably missing for six months. She hasn’t been in rehab or away on some drug binge, but in the Everneath where her six months away has been equal to one hundred years. Nikki went to the Everneath with Cole when she believed she had no other options left to her. Unlike every other person who has gone to the Feed, Nikki didn’t fade away. She remembers her life from above, but most importantly, she remembers Jack. She decides to go back to Jack, to try to make amends with her family and say goodbye properly before the Tunnels come for her. That is her destiny, to become a battery to the Everneath or to become an Everliving next to Cole as his queen. Unfortunately, as Cole’s queen, Nikki would have to feed off of people as he does and she refuses to do so. As time progresses she decides that these options don’t suit her and therefore she takes her fate into her own hands.

I really enjoyed Everneath, the Hades and Persephone myth has been done a few times and though it is one of my favorite myths I was getting a little sick of it. This book was a different kind of retelling where I didn’t find myself figuring out exactly what was going to happen next.

The characters were a good mix of personalities and though I had a hard time accepting some of the behaviors of certain characters I thought they worked well together. I honestly had a very hard time understanding why Nikki was so in love with Jack. They did go a bit into their back-story but it didn’t completely “click” with me, there seemed to be constant doubt on Nikki’s part and considering he was the sole reason she was able to hang on during the feed it seemed a little confusing. It may be that I am outgrowing the YA romances (gasp!) but I still wanted more from their relationship.

Overall I really liked Everneath, I believe I will continue with the series since the ending of this book was very interesting to me and I recommend it to those who enjoy Greek Mythology and retellings. Originally I was going to recommend it to fans of Goddess Interrupted and Fury but there seems to be a great divide between these fans, as they either love Fury or Everneath. Ironically, I was not particularly a Fury fan, and I enjoyed Everneath very much.

A Beautiful Evil

Title: A Beautiful Evil

Author: Kelly Keaton

Publishing Information: February 21st 2012 by Simon Pulse

Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy, Mythology, Paranormal

Series information: Book two in Gods & Monsters

Format: Hardcover, 285 pages

Source: Received an ARC from the publisher via Netgalley

Recommended For: Those who enjoy retellings of Greek mythology with a little paranormal fantasy thrown in.

Myth and mayhem inhabit a richly reimagined New Orleans in this sequel to Darkness Becomes Her. After the epic graveyard battle at the end of Darkness Becomes Her, Ari and her friends know what they’re up against: Ari is facing the Medusa curse and is haunted by the image of what she will become. To make matters worse, the heinous goddess Athena has kidnapped young Violet and is threatening to destroy Ari.

Ari, along with the superhot Sebastian, is doing everything she can to learn more about Athena and to get Violet back. But the battle of good and evil is bigger than she realizes, and she’s about to be pulled into a world more horrific than she could ever imagine…

This is the second book in Keaton’s Gods & Monsters series, it continues where the first book Darkness Becomes Her left off. Ari has started training at the academy and is preparing herself for when she meets Athena the next time, she intends to get Violet and her father back and take Athena down. As the story progresses she does get more than one chance to overtake Athena. However, Athena has a new plan up her sleeve and she uses Sebastian as a new pawn in her game, which leads Ari to make some very hard decisions that may determine the outcome of their entire relationship.

This addition to the series provided more insight to some of the characters while introducing some new faces as well. I was disappointed that Violet was again left a mystery but I found the part of Athena’s back-story to be interesting and I was very intrigued by Henri’s little secret. This novel also shed light on Sebastian’s true self and his relationship with Ari. Both characters are put through significant trials and I was thrilled with the way they both handled each situation.

Unfortunately the book as a whole disappointed me. I found it to be slow paced yet also filled with entirely too much action. I know that seems impossible but Ari kept going after Athena with no plan in place and just thought she could get lucky overcome the Goddess. Each time she failed miserably she turned right around without a plan and went after Athena no better prepared than she was the last time. This made me think of her as extremely immature and though I know this was a fantasy novel it still felt rather silly and unbelievable to me. I am not sure at this point if I will continue reading the series or not.

Much like the first book, I recommend this book to those who enjoy retellings of Greek mythology with a little paranormal fantasy thrown in.

Review: Darkness Becomes Her by Kelly Keaton

Title: Darkness Becomes Her

Author: Kelly Keaton

Publishing Information: February 22, 2011 by Simon Pulse

Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy, Paranormal, Mythology

Series information: Book one in The Gods & Monsters Trilogy

Format: Hardcover, 320 pages

Source: Received an ARC from the publisher

Recommended For: Readers looking for a Greek retelling with paranormal elements.

With teal eyes and freakish silver hair that can’t be changed or destroyed, Ari has always stood out. And after growing up in foster care, she longs for some understanding of where she came from and who she is. Her search for answers uncovers just one message from her long-dead mother: Run.

The story begins with Ari desperately searching for answers regarding her dead mother. She was brought up in foster care and like a lot of foster children she longed to know more of her parents. Ari is not only different because she comes from a foster home but she was born with teal eyes and silver hair, these characteristics greatly add to her beauty but they also make her feel even more alone in the world. After Ari obtains information on her mother she is attacked by a mysterious man and decides that her only choice is to venture into New 2, an area designate to those that are not “normal,” so that she can better understand where she came from.

I honestly don’t enjoy dystopian novels and therefore I wasn’t as excited to read about Ari and the ruined New Orleans. However the author does not focus on the dystopian elements but more on Ari’s story and her need for knowledge about her heritage.

The characters in this novel were so diverse and I really loved them all. Ari was really a strong heroine who doesn’t need to rely on anyone but herself. I really appreciated her strength, though I felt that her language was a little vulgar and at first it made me think of her as really immature. Sebastian was actually a pretty sweet character; he really cared about Ari it seemed. I am so used to the whole “falling in love after knowing each other for five minute” plot line that I have become desensitized. Their relationship was done in the same way on one level but at the same time I can relate to how she became close to her after she woke up to find him caring for her in a vulnerable state. Also Violet was such a neat character, she was very unique and she really helped to develop the story. Plus she has a miniature pet alligator named Pascal and I think that is so cool and also, I want one.

This book is a blend between the paranormal mystery type books and a Greek mythology retelling. It was quite unique in the way it blended the two genres and I was very impressed with the way the author set up the story. I am also happy to say that I didn’t completely figure out the plot twists before they occurred. It is always a pleasant feeling when parts of a book surprise me.I do have to say that the story went by too quickly for me and I believe the author could have doubled her page count and not decided to turn the book into a series. It really read more like a short prelude to a much longer story that is to come and I am highly anticipating A Beautiful Evil so that I can learn more about Ari and see her get revenge on those who tried to harm her.

I recommend this book to those that enjoy retellings of Greek mythology with a little paranormal fantasy thrown in, this book really is one of the best in this genre thus far.

Review: Fury by Elizabeth Miles

FuryTitle: Fury

Author: Elizabeth Miles

Publishing Information: August 30th 2011 by Simon Pulse

Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy, Paranormal, Mythology

Series information: Book 1 in The Fury Trilogy

Format: Hardcover, 370 pages

Source: Borrowed from my local library

Recommended For: Readers looking for a suspenseful and unique mythology retelling

Sometimes sorry isn’t enough….

It’s winter break in Ascension, Maine. The snow is falling and everything looks pristine and peaceful. But not all is as it seems…

Between cozy traditions and parties with her friends, Emily loves the holidays. And this year’s even better–the guy she’s been into for months is finally noticing her. But Em knows if she starts things with him, there’s no turning back. Because his girlfriend is Em’s best friend.

On the other side of town, Chase is having problems of his own. The stress of his home life is starting to take its toll, and his social life is unraveling. But that’s nothing compared to what’s really haunting him. Chase has done something cruel…something the perfect guy he pretends to be would never do. And it’s only a matter of time before he’s exposed.

In Ascension, mistakes can be deadly. And three girls—three beautiful, mysterious girls—are here to choose who will pay.

Em and Chase have been chosen.

When I first read the blurb about this book I thought the idea was so cool, there are retellings popping up all over the place but the idea of the FURIES being showcased really caught my attention. I love a good tale of revenge, and I have a serious love for karma. However, I went into this book with expectations too high, I had expected to read a book with serious mythological elements and instead was met with a story about serious repercussions in relation to high school problems.

I was pretty much annoyed by the characters almost immediately. Em is in love with her best friend’s boyfriend, Zach, and even though she completely 100% knows the severity of what she is doing she does it anyway and starts messing around with him while her best friend Gabby is on vacation. When her lies come undone she cries and talks about how horrible of a person she is but just wants Gabby to “listen” to her so they can talk everything out. Do I think her punishment from The Furies was too harsh? Yes, but we will get to that in a moment. Chase is the other person The Furies have come after; he did something pretty terrible that to me is more unforgiveable than Em being a boyfriend stealer. Despite this terrible behavior (it’s kind of a plot twist so I can’t really say what he did) I found myself sympathizing with Chase and feeling bad for him because he is poor and does everything he can to maintain his reputation. He falls head over heels for one of The Furies and she humiliates him to a point of no return, it made me sad and a little frustrated. The secondary characters were more likeable and I found myself really enjoying Em’s neighbor JD. Drea was also a neat character and I wish we saw more of her than just her assisting Em in finding out more information on The Furies. I shouldn’t even mention Zach because he is a cheating scumbag who gets no punishment, though the ending hints that he may show up in the sequel.

It’s no mystery that I love horror stories and I love vengeance so I really thought I would enjoy this story more than I did. Em’s punishment from The Furies was slightly more justified to me than Chase’s and I will say that the author had me on the edge of my seat wondering what was going to happen next. Chase meets a much different end and I really didn’t enjoy it. I understand the justification in minds of The Furies but really I was just annoyed by it and thought it slightly dramatic and not at all teaching a lesson but getting rid of the situation all together. I really do hope that Elizabeth Miles brings back Zach in the second book because he was the only one in this story I thought needed serious punishment for being such an arrogant jerk, and he got away in the end unharmed.

There were parts of this book I really liked, it was definitely suspenseful but didn’t scare me in the least. It was also very different in the way it brought in both juvenile and adult themes and molded them together. I have been on a total mythology kick lately and though the retellings I have read have been okay, they aren’t mind blowing amazing. Fury by Elizabeth Miles falls into the same category as a sort of take it or leave it book that fell short for me in a few ways, perhaps my expectations were too high. However, this book IS worth reading; just don’t go in expecting much in relation to the Greek myths. Don’t be deferred from my opinion, like any good doctor will tell you, a second opinion is always a good idea! My friend Heidi posted a magnificent rave about the book on her blog a few weeks back.

Review: Goddess Interrupted by Aimee Carter

Title: Goddess Interrupted

Author: Aimee Carter

Publishing Information: March 27, 2012 by Harlequin Teen

Genre: Young Adult, Mythology, Romance

Series information: Book 2 in the Goddess Test series

Format: Hardcover, 304 pages

Source: Received an ARC from the publisher via Netgalley

Recommended For: Fans of Greek Mythology and their retellings.

Kate Winters has won immortality.

But if she wants a life in the Underworld with Henry, she’ll have to fight for it.

Becoming immortal wasn’t supposed to be the easy part. Though Kate is about to be crowned Queen of the Underworld, she’s as isolated as ever. And despite her growing love for Henry, ruler of the Underworld, he’s becoming ever more distant and secretive. Then, in the midst of Kate’s coronation, Henry is abducted by the only being powerful enough to kill him: the King of the Titans.

As the other gods prepare for a war that could end them all, it is up to Kate to save Henry from the depths of Tartarus. But in order to navigate the endless caverns of the Underworld, Kate must enlist the help of the one person who is the greatest threat to her future.

Henry’s first wife, Persephone.


It has been six months since Kate passed the tests to become Henry’s wife and the queen of The Underworld. It has also been six months since she has seen Henry, six months that she has spent exploring the world with her best friend James. Kate can’t wait to get home and see Henry, unfortunately he isn’t as excited to see her and he barely acknowledges her presence. Kate brushes this aside and decides to go forward with her induction ceremony but right as she is about to be crowned, Cronus, the “father” to the six most powerful Gods begins to break free of his prison and he attacks the group of Gods gathered for the ceremony. It comes to light that Calliope is behind this attack and she is doing everything she can to free Cronus to take revenge on Kate and Henry. Cronus captures Henry, Walter and Philip and Kate decides she has no other choice but to go after them. James and Ava accompany her and they soon realize that they need some serious help from the only other person besides Henry who knows all the secrets of The Underworld, his first wife Persephone.

At first I was a little annoyed over Persephone’s characteristics but overall I really liked her personality and the way she bantered back and forth with Ava. She is a really forward character and knows exactly what she wants. I have to say that for the most part I liked her significantly more than Kate. A lot of the story was focused on Kate struggling with her emotions toward Henry, She knew she loved him but one moment she was leaving because she didn’t think he loved her and the next she was 100% sure that he did. Not to mention the fact that she felt completely inferior to Persephone in relation to every aspect of her life. I felt like she was so stuck on comparing herself to her sister that she couldn’t appreciate her gifts and her strengths as much as she did in the first book. Then there was Henry, I wanted to punch him in the face a few times, especially when SPOILER ALERT Persephone goes to him in his “secret” hideout and they have a LONG reunion in which they keep kissing!!! I understand that Persephone was apparently trying to prove to him that he didn’t love her but are you kidding? They just kept going and going and I had a really hard time liking Henry after that. It just felt like he was settling for Kate because she was devoted to Henry and Persephone was not. END SPOILER I think by the end I was just tired of the back and forth in Kate’s mind and I just wanted some hint of love or emotion from Henry.

I know it seems like I was not satisfied with this book but I really was. It was adventurous and heartfelt and it made me want more. I was SO happy with the ending. The first book ended in a total meh way and that’s what I had expected from this novel as well. Thankfully I was surprised and it was a total I DID NOT SEE THAT COMING moment that really has me anticipating the next book. Despite my frustrations over certain parts of this book it was very entertaining and I recommend it to those liking books filled with conflict, emotion and Greek myths with a twist.

Review: The Goddess Test by Aimee Carter

 Title: The Godess Test

Author: Aimee Carter

Publishing Information: April 19, 2011 by Harlequin Teen

Genre: Young Adult, Mythology, Romance

Series information: Book 1 in The Goddess Test Series

Format: Hardcover, 293 pages

Source: Received an ARC from the publisher via Netgalley

Recommended For: Readers interested in Greek Mythology and strong heroines.

It’s always been just Kate and her mom–and her mother is dying. Her last wish? To move back to her childhood home. So Kate’s going to start at a new school with no friends, no other family and the fear her mother won’t live past the fall.

Then she meets Henry. Dark. Tortured. And mesmerizing. He claims to be Hades, god of the Underworld–and if she accepts his bargain, he’ll keep her mother alive while Kate tries to pass seven tests.

Kate is sure he’s crazy–until she sees him bring a girl back from the dead. Now saving her mother seems crazily possible. If she succeeds, she’ll become Henry’s future bride, and a goddess.

The Goddess Test is a modern day retelling of the Greek myth of Hades and Persephone. Kate’s mother is dying and her last wish is that she and Kate move to her hometown of Eden. Kate agrees and they move to Eden, Kate starts at the local high school and soon crosses the path of the queen bee, Ava. Ava lures Kate to the grounds of Eden Manor under false pretenses and a practical joke soon turns deadly. Kate tries to save Ava’s life to no avail, and then the mysterious Henry appears and offers to bring Ava back to life in exchange for a promise from Kate. Kate must promise to spend the winter with Henry in The Underworld, much like Persephone. Kate hurriedly agrees thinking she must be going crazy and Henry brings Ava back to life.

Henry soon comes for Kate to bring her to the Underworld and Kate says that she will do as she promised if he promises to keep her mother alive for the season. Henry agrees and says that Kate must pass seven tests while in his realm. If she passes, she will become a goddess, Henry’s bride and the queen of The Underworld. However, if she fails, her mother will die and she will never see her again.

I liked the premise of The Goddess Test, I love re-writes and the Hades/Persephone story is one of my favorite myths. The characters in The Goddess Test were also very fun and layered. Henry is the typical brooding male with this outer shell that seems impenetrable. Thankfully Kate is able to break through and bring out some heartfelt emotional moments from him. Ava transforms into an agreeable character and Calliope was really a very enjoyable character once you get over the crazy. James is loveable but I couldn’t help but be reminded of the whole Jacob/Bella/Edward triangle and it was not very enticing for me.

The tests Kate must endure are all extremely subtle, I kept waiting for a sense chaos and adventure but it did not come. When the tests were revealed in the end I understood how they fit in to the story and how they really showcased Kate’s strengths and weaknesses but I was still somewhat disappointed in the lack of excitement. However, I really enjoyed the ending and how it gave focus on Kate and her mother’s relationship. I was impressed by how her love for her mother wasn’t overshadowed by her new “love” for Henry.

I do have a few major complaints after reading this book. First, I felt like the whole book focused on Kate having a “choice” and not being “forced” into doing anything but really she didn’t have much of a choice at all. She wanted her mother to live and knew that Henry would die if she didn’t pass the tests. She was convinced that she loved him after spending only a few moments with him but even if that wasn’t the case she knew him enough that she didn’t want any harm to come to him. It would take a very selfish person to decide to save themselves and not do all they can to save those around them. I also had a very hard time appreciating the way in which the author set the characters up in relation to their Greek counterparts. The author provides a list at the end explaining whom each character in the book represents in Greek mythology and with the exception of 3 of them I really couldn’t understand the connection. However I am happy to say that I read the sequel, Goddess Interrupted and not only was it much more adventurous, it explained the characters much better and I was able to appreciate how their characteristics coincided with their Greek personalities. I recommend this book to anyone who likes Greek mythology, re-writes and strong female characters.

I will be reviewing the sequel, Goddess Interrupted this weekend so make sure to stop by!