Friday, September 2, 2016

Title: Nevernight
Author: Jay Kristoff
Narrator(s): Holter Graham
Series: The Nevernight Chronicle, book #1
Length: 20 hrs 11 mins
Publisher: Macmillan Audio
Publication Date: August 9, 2016
Source: galley received from publisher, purchased audiobook
Purchase: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Audible

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The first in a new fantasy series from the New York Times bestselling author.

In a land where three suns almost never set, a fledgling killer joins a school of assassins, seeking vengeance against the powers who destroyed her family.

Daughter of an executed traitor, Mia Corvere is barely able to escape her father’s failed rebellion with her life. Alone and friendless, she hides in a city built from the bones of a dead god, hunted by the Senate and her father’s former comrades. But her gift for speaking with the shadows leads her to the door of a retired killer, and a future she never imagined.

Now, Mia is apprenticed to the deadliest flock of assassins in the entire Republic—the Red Church. If she bests her fellow students in contests of steel, poison and the subtle arts, she’ll be inducted among the Blades of the Lady of Blessed Murder, and one step closer to the vengeance she desires. But a killer is loose within the Church’s halls, the bloody secrets of Mia’s past return to haunt her, and a plot to bring down the entire congregation is unfolding in the shadows she so loves.

Will she even survive to initiation, let alone have her revenge?

Before I get started extolling the merits of this bloody, brutal, beautiful little book, I need to let you know that although Jay writes amazing young adult novels, this one right here is of the 18 and up persuasion. There's cursing and violence and sex and all manner of things that I, personally, look for in a good book, but it's maybe not for the younger crowd. I mean, I totally would have loved this novel even back then, but I don't know if my parents would have appreciated it if they'd known what was inside this seemingly harmless book. Of course, they never even caught on that I was reading my mom's Harlequin romance novels at the ripe old age of 11.

Having said that, I know a lot of people took issue with the extravagant details and extensive footnotes included in the text. It's part of why I shied from reading the advance copy I was provided by the publisher. I've loved everything I've read of Jay's to date, and I didn't want this to be the book that changed that. The Lotus War series was fantastic, and it was also highly detailed, so I didn't really see that being a problem for me. But the remarks about the footnotes reminded me of reading a history textbook and I am not all about that.

So, I waited until the audiobook was released. Jay's novels are impressive in the audio version, and Nevernight was no different. In fact, aside from Illuminae - because let's face it, that book was awesome in any edition - this might be my favorite of his stories. The narrator was phenomenal, just phenomenal. And the way the footnotes were handled was rather like an aside. Instead of trudging down to the bottom of the page or back of a chapter to get the details on a specific event or person, it felt inclusive and part of the story rather than an extra. It was remarkably well done and made me glad I waited for the audio. Something tells me I would not have enjoyed the footnotes so much if I'd actually read the text.

If you enjoyed And I Darken by Kiersten White or The Young Elites by Marie Lu, you'll likely enjoy this one just as much, if not more...and vice versa. Books like these kind of go have to have a deep-seated love of anti-heroes to get them because a happily ever after is going to be very hard to come by. I feel like books like this seek to shock and appall, and I am beyond certain that this book in particular succeeded in the highest fashion. Hell, the first chapter alone did that.

GIF it to me straight:

About the author:

Jay Kristoff is the New York Times and internationally bestselling author of THE LOTUS WAR, THE ILLUMINAE FILES and THE NEVERNIGHT CHRONICLE. He is the winner of two Aurealis Awards, an ABIA, nominee for the David Gemmell Morningstar and Legend awards, named multiple times in the Kirkus and Amazon Best Teen Books list and published in over twenty-five countries, most of which he has never visited. He is as surprised about all of this as you are. He is 6’7 and has approximately 13030 days to live. He abides in Melbourne with his secret agent kung-fu assassin wife, and the world’s laziest Jack Russell.

He does not believe in happy endings.

Find Jay:

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  1. This was my first book by Jay and I loved it! The footnotes were definitely a bit heavy to read but some of it was fun :D Now I want to try the audio book!

  2. I just finished And I Darken last week and I really enjoyed it. So I'm happy to hear you recommend it for fans of that book. Maybe I'll use my Audible credit on *this* one. ;)


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