Evermore (The Immortals #1) by Alyson Noel
Reading level: Young Adult
Paperback: 320 pages
Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin
While this book has been received with mixed reviews, I really enjoyed it and I think Alyson Noel has a great voice for writing tragic teen romance. Evermore is basically a girl meets boy love story, but there are a few obstacles including an ancient love triangle that gets in their way.
Ever Bloom is a 16 year old who had a near death experience when her entire family is killed in a car crash. Since the accident she sees auras, hears people's thoughts, and can know someone's life story by just a touch. This new power makes her over sensitive to voices and noise, so she hides under hoodies and iPod headphones to drown out the noise. She has moved to a new town to live with an aunt and become an outsider at her new school.
Then along comes Damen, handsome, rich, multi-talented, mysterious stranger who is also a newcomer at school. Ever tries to ignore him until she realizes she can't hear his thoughts or see his aura. He has the ability to silence all the chaos in her head. Naturally, she falls in love with him because he can take away her pain.
Ever is a typical teenage character and she grows throughout the novel. She is full of guilt over her family's accident and Noel portrays her grieving process in a heart-wrenching way. Ever is finally able to accept her new psychic gifts and her life moves in a positive direction.
One of the funniest characters in the book is Riley, the ghost of Ever's little sister. Even in death, Riley remains the typically kid sister, playing practical jokes and displaying jealousy of her older sister.
The one thing I did not like about the book was Ever's brief fall into alcoholism. I realize the alcohol was part of the plot to help Ever deal with her psychic abilities, but I cringed when I thought about all the young children and teenagers reading this book. I'm glad this phase in Ever's life only lasted a brief time, and I would have been happier without it.
Although many people compare this book to Twilight, I don't think this comparison is fair. Both Noel and Meyer have a unique writing style and they are both able to bring characters alive on the page. I realize this book is not a work of literary excellence, but it is a fun fantasy read that takes you away from your every day life. I'm now ready to start on the 2nd book in the series, Blue Moon.