I have never read a book quite like Everless by Sara Holland. The story is exciting and nerve-racking, and so absurdly amazing that the sequel cannot come fast enough. Time has been bound to blood, and blood to iron, something which definitely causes issues when it comes to the lovely Jules and her turbulent past.
This book was released on 2nd January 2018.
This review may contain mild spoilers for this book (What I consider spoilers might not be what you consider spoilers but I thought that I’d put it out there just in case). READERS YE BE WARNED!
In the kingdom of Sempera, time is currency—extracted from blood, bound to iron, and consumed to add time to one’s own lifespan. The rich aristocracy, like the Gerlings, tax the poor to the hilt, extending their own lives by centuries.
No one resents the Gerlings more than Jules Ember. A decade ago, she and her father were servants at Everless, the Gerlings’ palatial estate, until a fateful accident forced them to flee in the dead of night. When Jules discovers that her father is dying, she knows that she must return to Everless to earn more time for him before she loses him forever.
But going back to Everless brings more danger—and temptation—than Jules could have ever imagined. Soon she’s caught in a tangle of violent secrets and finds her heart torn between two people she thought she’d never see again. Her decisions have the power to change her fate—and the fate of time itself.
Everless was an absolute dream to read. I think I read it in one sitting. It was super fun and mysterious and a definite page-turner. In fact, it was so full of mystery that I failed to predict the gigantic plot twist at the end of the book. I super recommend that everyone who is into fantasy give this one a go.
The main thing that I adore about this book is that I have never read any story that is even remotely similar. The story follows Jules, our protagonist, in the fantasy country of Sempera where time is bound to blood and blood, in turn, is bound to iron. Or, in even simpler terms, Time = Currency. Jules and her father had fled from Everless, an estate owned by a noble family, when she was still very young but now that her father is running out of time and she badly needs the money, Jules decides to take a job as a servant there. Naturally, chaos ensues. There is a BIG emphasis placed on the mystery part of the story line which I thought really worked well. It allowed for a lot more action type, non-romancey disasters to occur and push the story along at a better, quicker pace.
Unlike many female leads in YA fantasy books, Jules is strong-willed and BONUS! The actions she took were, mostly, logical. While she did manage to stumble head first into some pretty bad situations, there wouldn’t have been much of a book if she hadn’t. I absolutely adored that she made friends with people of different ages and didn’t just seek out people she had previously known or girls her own age (e.g. The older lady who ran the kitchen and a young errand boy). While most of the book is spent on Jules and her self-discovery/character development, that does not mean that there weren’t any handsome dudes for potential ships COUGH-Roan and Liam-COUGH. Please take note that there wasn’t any insta-love or love triangles in this book which I know will make tons of people happy (I know it had that effect on me).
The writing in the book was beautiful. Strong and rather elegant, it made the pacing of the book perfect. Not too much description that it was slow and not so little that the suspense was lost. Just like the prose, the world building was magnificent. It is a very original world idea and I LOVED IT! The characters don’t just exist in a 2D world, the author has created myths and legends to go along with the story and make it all seem that much more real.
At the end of the day all I want to say is that Everless by Sara Holland is one of the most epic and unique YA fantasy books I have ever read. My only issue is that I have to wait an entire year before I can get my hands on the sequel.