Everless (Untitled #1)
Author: Sara Holland
Genre: YA, Fantasy/Dystopian
Publication Date: January 4th 2018
Format: eARC (362 pages)
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.
My Rating: ★★★★.5
I have to admit that before jumping into Everless I had heard many, many great things about it but despite that, I was admittedly still a little sceptical over how much I would enjoy this after reading so many YA fantasy/dystopian type novels. I couldn’t be happier to tell you how wrong I was to be worried. This book was a fantastic read and I thoroughly enjoyed it, despite the occasional trope-y thing here or there.
I thought that the overall concept for this novel was really interesting and that’s what initially had me wanting to read it. The idea of using time as currency intrigued me and even more so when I found out that this time was withdrawn from people using their blood. It had me thinking about how I would feel if I was told I had to lose a week, month or even years of my life. This concept was also used to highlight social differences with the upper class families having an abundance of time at their disposal versus the poorer families literally scraping together time to pay their bills. I really loved it and it kept me hooked to the story.
Despite foreseeing who the real ‘baddy’ would be in this book (thank you previous years of YA fantasy/dystopian reading), it didn’t spoil the book for me at all. Even right up until the big reveal I doubted myself and so I still had the pleasurable gasp of shock when the baddy was truly revealed. I even felt completely betrayed!
Everless is also laced with folktales and mythology and this was an element I hadn’t expected but really loved. When a book comes with its own set of fairy tales I am all for it and I was really interested to see how these intertwined with the story as the plot moved forward.
The characters in this novel are brilliantly written! I really, really liked Jules (thankfully!) and thought she was a fantastic leading lady. She is strong, sassy, compassionate, driven, loving and flawed! (Yay for flawed leading ladies!) The sacrifice she makes to protect her father really hit me in the heart and cemented my love for her. There are also a whole host of excellent characters, not to mention some swoon-worthy males! I do want to give a special shout out to Ina who I just really thought was adorable and can’t stop loving!
Everless has fantastic world-building, a captivating concept, fully fleshed characters and is a really addictive read! I absolutely cannot wait to get my hands on book 2 and see what happens to Jules next!
Thanks to Hachette and NetGalley for my advanced eARC in exchange for a fair and honest review.
Have you read Everless? Is it on your TBR?
What are your favourite YA dystopian novels?