This is another one that I got almost as soon as it came out, but am only now getting to! And honestly, I’m pretty sure I purchased this one before reading any reviews or summaries. I was entranced by the pretty cover. In fact, I still am. This review will probably take a while for me to write because I can’t stop looking at this book!
And before I say anything else I need to say how happy I was for a YA mythology type book for girls! I love Greek mythology and I’m always excited to see it in YA books! Plus, this one deals with Persephone, one of my favorite, tragic myths. That alone made this book a must-read.
And while the book is sort of a modern day retelling of Persephone’s story, it also is quite unique. In this version, Nikki had to willingly choose to go into the Everneath. The Everneath is a whole other world made up of immortals and tunnels. The tunnels are made up of poor souls like Nikki that fuel the whole underworld. And the immortals only live as long as they can keep stealing the energy of the girls who choose to enter the Everneath. In the Everneath she is physically and mentally attached Cole.
Why would anyone decide to go to the underworld? What is worth loosing your whole soul and 100 years of your life? Nikki is a very sad person. She recently lost her mother. And just as she meets the love of her life, and begins to heal from her serious loss, things take another downturn. The person responsible for the death of Nikki’s mother gets away free after the not-so-good trial, and then Nikki bumps into a naked girl leaving her boyfriend’s bedroom. She practically runs into Cole’s arms as soon as she leaves her boyfriend, Jack.
Technically, 100 years down there is only six months up in the real world. But, most people age those 100 years down there by the time they come back. Nikki has not aged those years like almost everyone else has. She’s not sure why this is important, but she knows it’s why Cole doesn’t want to loose her. As soon as Nikki decides to come back to life after her “6 months,” Cole tries to convince her to come back. She has a total of six more months in the real world before the tunnels will claim her forever. Unless, of course, she decides to go back with Cole (as a queen).
Why go back to the real world for six months? Nikki decides she has a lot of problems to resolve, and a lot of forgiveness to ask, and a lot of goodbyes to say this time. There’s a lot of drama at school because everyone assumed Nikki ran away and had a drug problem. She looks so much thinner and so on edge all of the time. I loved watching Nikki trying to make things right with her father and with her friends. And then of course there was Jack, the boy she couldn’t stop thinking about the whole time she was in the Underneath, even though all of her other memories got sucked away.
This book is loaded with romance, mythology, death, energy, family drama, love triangles (more than one), grief, creepy sacrificing cults, dances, and friendship. Really, this book just has everything! The story and the underworld are just so well contrived and put together. I’ve never quite read anything like it. Nikki is a little hard to like at first because of how broken she is, but I grew to love her because even though she is quite broken, she is still so tough! She doesn’t take anything from anyone. And she gets mad points from me for this. She also has a lot of learning to do and growing to do, and is more than willing to do this. She risks everything to be home and do this.
I really tried hard not spoil too much. It’s always so hard to write reviews for books that tell everything out of order. This book goes back and forth between the time before Nikki goes under and after. There are rare snapshots of her time in the Underneath, but mostly there’s a lot of back and forth of the before and after, which for this story worked extremely well! There was a lot of mystery and a lot of putting together the pieces of Nikki’s life. Also, I thought Cole was such an interesting character too!
This book works a fantastic modern retelling of a classic myth! The story is well thought out and so addicting! The underworld Ashton describes is so unlike any other underworld I’ve read about. The boys in this book are wonderful! The sad parts of this book make everything more believable. And I really don’t know if I have one negative thing to say about it. It gets a 10/10 from me! I’m so excited for the sequel to come out. And I highly recommend this book to fans of the TV show, Supernatural.