Having heard wonderful things about it, I was excited to jump into the world of Everless! 😃✨ Sara Holland’s debut novel introduces readers to a world where time is — quite literally — money, and those who don’t have it are at risk of losing everything, including their lives. The set-up is familiar: Jules, a teenage girl from a small village, tries to unravel a mystery — about the beautiful, dangerous city of Everless, as well as herself. But she has more power than she knows, and the game she thought she was playing might just turn out to be something else entirely…
NOTE: I decided to listen to the audiobook, and I liked it a lot! The narrator, Eileen Stevens, read passionately, and she did an amazing job of differentiating characters’ voices. (Although I could never take Roan or Liam all that seriously. Something about their voices kept pulling me out of the story… and there were times where Liam sounded British, but not all the time…? 🤔)
Not sure what this book is about? You can find a short synopsis here. 🙂
What I Liked: I really liked the world of Sempera. The details were rich, vivid, and memorable, and I think I had an easier time picturing the different settings than I did the characters. The story is very compelling. I found myself listening to this audiobook whenever I could, because I couldn’t wait to find out what would happen next! This was due, in part, to the mystery surrounding Jules and what really happened at Everless before she and her father fled. I can honestly say that the conclusion of this book surprised me. I wasn’t expecting that twist, but I think it works very well to establish what the rest of the series will focus on. Overall, this was definitely an engaging read, and the primary thing that hooked me was the world itself and how Holland described it.
What I Disliked: I didn’t feel too attached to any of the characters. While I cared about Jules and wanted her to find the truth about herself and what’s really going on at Everless, I found myself feeling frustrated whenever she made a foolish choice. I know she’s only seventeen, and mistakes are bound to be made. But I just couldn’t understand why she made some of the decisions she did, knowing what she knew at the time. 🙁 (I’d say more, but that would likely spoil a few big plot points.) I didn’t find myself rooting for her to end up with Roan, because I really didn’t know much about him. He seemed like a good enough guy, and it felt — at least for a while — like he was being set up to end his engagement to Ina and choose Jules instead… but I just didn’t care about him. Or even Liam! Do I hate him? Do I like him? Maybe I’m not even sure. 😐 (And Jules might be feeling the same way.) It felt like an attempt at a love triangle, but not quite…? I’m glad it wasn’t, at least not in the traditional sense. But I just felt a general detachment from the characters and their relationships with one another.
Overall, this book is a well-written fantasy with impressive world-building and a great deal of potential. I’m looking forward to seeing what happens to Jules in the next book! Hopefully I’ll enjoy it a little more, now that I’m familiar with the world and the characters. Everless does an excellent job of setting things in motion, and I’d say it’s absolutely worth the read.
About the Author: Sara Holland