Friday, December 14, 2018

#Review - Evermore by Sara Holland #YALit #Fantasy

Series: Everless #2
Format: E-Galley, 368 pages
Release Date: December 31, 2018
Publisher: HarperTeen
Source: Publisher
Genre: Young Adult / Fantasy / Epic

In this highly anticipated sequel to the New York Times bestselling novel Everless, Jules must confront the girl who is both her oldest friend and greatest enemy.

Jules Ember was raised hearing legends of the ancient magic of the wicked Alchemist and the good Sorceress. But she has just learned the truth: She is the Alchemist, and Caro—a woman who single-handedly murdered the Queen and Jules’s first love, Roan, in cold blood—is the Sorceress.

The whole kingdom believes that Jules is responsible for the murders, and a hefty bounty has been placed on her head. And Caro is intent on destroying Jules, who stole her heart twelve lifetimes ago. Jules must delve into the stories that she now recognizes are accounts of her own past. For it is only by piecing together the mysteries of her lives that Jules will be able to save the person who has captured her own heart in this one.

This dazzling fantasy series will captivate fans of Victoria Aveyard, Kiera Cass, and Kendare Blake with its fierce heroine, high-stakes adventure, engrossing mysteries, star-crossed romance, and captivating magic all set in a richly built world.

Evermore, by author Sara Holland, is the second installment in the Everless duology. A series that explores an ancient rivalry over time itself. Time is money—literally—in Jules’s world, and the rich are quick to tax years off the lives of the poor, extending their own lives by centuries. The poor must give up their futures to survive in the present. Just as in Red Queen, blood possesses magical properties, and the heroine’s humble origins and fierce familial loyalty draw strong parallels between Jules and Mare.

Evermore begins with protagonist Jules Ember, (who is the legendary Alchemist) on the run from Caro (the legendary Sorceress), still reeling from what she has learned about herself and grappling with her new reality. She has also been accused of murdering the last Queen as well as her former childhood friend Roan, who just happens to be Liam Gerling's brother. Jules and Caro are supposed to be ancient enemies. But, Jules has lost all memories of her past. Whereas, Caro, has remembered everything including the fact that Jules stole her heart. 

Jules must struggle to find a way to end Caro, and the only way she can do that, is to go back to her past, and search for answers which may allow her to finally end a relentless past of dying and being reborn. The key being that stories are the answer to things that Jules has forgotten, including who she once was when things went badly between her and Caro. Much of this book follows Jules on the run while she searches her past for any way to defeat the sorceress along with Liam Gerling who she once found lacking and spiteful. 

Liam is by Jules' side for much of the book, to share what he has learned of the Alchemist's life and as a steady companion through all of Jules' searching. As I stated above, one of the main topics of this series is how being able to buy and sell time from your life would affect people, and society at large, which I thought was fascinating.  Evermore had has plenty of action, the pacing was great, the character arcs were well done and the romance isn't overly in your face. But, the book definitely got away from the Science Fiction feel of the first book and entered into the epic fantasy realm. 

Jules and Caro's pasts are explored pretty thorough. One of the other secondary characters of this book is the new Queen, Ina Gold, who just happens to be Jules sister in this incarnation. Ina has been under Caro's spell for some time now, so the question is whether or not she can be a factor in helping Jules end the redundancy of dying at he hands of her once former best friend, or if she too will become one of Jules most hated rivals.

I have a very different point of view about the ending. The ending is a bit on the emotional side. Not going to lie. Were there any way to make the ending better, I am pretty sure the author or publisher or editor would have found a way to work it out. I honestly believe the most intriguing parts of this story were the back story between Jules and Caro and how they ended up becoming enemies.

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