Monday, November 01, 2010

Medium Meets Twilight In Over-Hyped Evermore

(Image from Indiebound)

Imagine if Bella could see dead people, if she knew from the start what Edward was or at least what he wasn't (alive). Imagine if she could hear the whispers of everyone's thoughts swirling around her 24/7 - except Edward's. Now, imagine Edward lived alone, there was no Jacob, Bella's parents died in a car accident, and her dead little sister hangs around to give her fashion advice. Oh, and they all live in sunny California. Voila! I give you Evermore, the first book in The Immortals series by Alyson Noël. Okay, there's a little more to it than that, but the title of this post pretty much sums up the book: It's a little Medium mixed with a whole lotta Twilight.

Want a real book summary? Oh, alright, here goes:

After a horrifying car accident, everything changes for 16-year-old Ever Bloom. Her parents and younger sister are dead and she's alone in a hospital bed with just her guilt to keep her company. Then, she realizes that not only can she see people's auras, but she can actually hear their thoughts. It's all thoughts, all the time, a constant buzzing in her head that won't go away, even when she recovers enough to move into her aunt's seaside mini-mansion. Ever's aversion to contact (she drowns herself in oversized clothes, keeps her iPod on full blast and never touches anyone) brands her a freak at her new school. She's got a couple outcast friends and her dead sister to keep her company, which is about all the socializing she can handle.

Then, Damen Auguste saunters into Ever's high school. Even with all the tanned blondes roaming the halls, he stands out with his exotic movie star looks. Everyone notices the new kid, even a startled Ever, who sees right off why Damen's different - he has no aura and she can't read his thoughts. It's weird. It's also addicting; when she's with Damen, the cacophony in her head shuts off, giving Ever a peace she never knows otherwise. He seems totally into her, too, except when he's ... not. Just when she thinks she's got him figured out he disappears, flirts with other girls, refuses to answers questions about his past, and slips into weird, old-fashioned speech. The closer she gets to him, the weirder their friendship becomes. Who - or what - is Damen Auguste? Why is he paying so much attention to Ever? Does he know her secret? Will he expose her for the freak she is? Or is it she who will be exposing him?

Okay, I admit the story has potential. Unfortunately, it travels too-familiar roads, leading to pretty much exactly the kind of finale you would expect. The characters never get beyond empty cliches, Ever's fights seem too easy, there's no real chemistry between Ever and Damen, and their story just goes on and on and on and on. I was still 100 pages from finished when I realized I couldn't wait for the book to end. Instead of clamoring for the sequel, I closed the novel with a sigh of relief. Really. It was that irritating.

After reading Evermore, I can see why some book bloggers are declaring themselves over the whole YA paranormal thing. Reading the same story time and time and time again is getting old. Or maybe it's just me? Am I the only genre fan out there who wants something fresh? Or is everyone else okay with the Twilight reruns?

(Readalikes: the Twilight series by Stephenie Meyer; The Dark Divine by Bree Despain; The Body Finder by Kimberly Derting; a hundred others ...)

Grade: C-

If this were a movie, it would be rated: R for strong language, sexual content, and depictions of underrage drinking/partying

To the FTC, with love: Another library fine find

8 comments:

  1. I feel I am over it too... and yet, I just keep on reading them! I pretty much felt the same way about this book too, and have no real anxiety about the sequels.

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  2. I have read this book. But until I read your review, I couldn't have told you what it was about. It was forgettable. Sometimes that's how I can tell that a book is good (at least in my opinion) -- can I still give you the main plot points months after I've read it? This one I cannot. I don't think that means that I'm done with the genre, just that maybe I need to be more picky about which ones I read.

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  3. *le sigh* I did not like this book AT ALL. The premise sounded so good, but it ended up being a big FAIL.

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  4. Suey - LOL. I'm not going to bother with the sequels. Waste of time as far as I'm concerned.

    Annette - Forgettable is a good way to describe it. And I agree, if you can't remember the plot a few months later, it obviously wasn't a very impactful book!

    TBM - You're welcome :)

    Christina - I totally agree. It was so disappointing because the covers are so pretty and the premise sounds so fun. Oh well.

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  5. I'm with you on all points. This was one of the books I read a while ago that made me really sour on the paranormal romance (but I haven't stopped reading them yet). It felt very Twilight to me too.

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  6. I was NOT a fan of this one. Thanks for the review! :)

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  7. I agree with your review completely! I thought this book was wayyyyy too similar to Twilight & was very predictable. I don't think I'll be reading the rest in the series; I feel like there are many other unique/original paranormal YA books I'd rather spend my time on.

    With that being said, readers who really loved Twilight might enjoy this book. I wouldn't completely dismiss it based on my personal opinion.

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