Monday, March 18, 2013

EVER review: It was EVERything I had hoped for

Pop quiz time:
Q: What is every writer's favorite thing to do, other than to write?
A: Read, of course!
Q: What does every writer love to do even more after reading?
A: Blog about it, of course!

I had an amazing opportunity to read Ever, by Jessa Russo, and participate in her Review-Only book tour. Ever is book one in her YA paranormal romance trilogy. Some say that paranormal romance is on its way out or is too been-there-done-that-nothing-new-to-write-about, so let's move along, folks. 

Ever smashes that theory in the face. It was really nice and refreshing, as an adult who likes to read and write in the YA genre, to pick up a new book, by a new author, that makes you literally want to sit down with a warm, vanilla latte and tell everyone to, "Piss off, already, I'm reading!" This is one of those books that is written so well, you lose track of time and demolish the book in one sitting. So, as you may have guessed, it's an easy read.

So, who here is a sucker for romance, and believes a love triangle can never get old? *raises hand* Especially in Ever's case. Ever is a seventeen-year-old girl who's had an ongoing crush on her best friend Frankie. Then, handsome and older Toby moves in next door and takes and unsuspecting, but ready, Ever by storm. The twist? Frankie's been dead for the past two years. Yeah, there's that. Oh, and did I mention he lives in her house? And her family and best friend can see him?

So, the stage is set for the romance part and the paranormal part. Okay, so let's address the elephant in the blog. Ghost stories have been done. Ghost+romance stories have been done. Especially in YA. BUT...and since we're talking elephants in the blog, it's a BIG BUT...but what I loved about Ever, and what makes it still interesting, unique, and highly worth reading is:

1) Ever isn't perfect herself, but she is downright relateable. Especially to seventeen year old girls. Jessa has a wonderful way with character development. I mean, you know who Ever is. You know who her best friend Jessie is. You get Frankie and Toby. You quickly become invested in how the hell this interesting little love triangle can work itself out.

2) Jessa is NOT afraid to have BIG things happen in her story to move the plot along, and I like that in a girl! I'm trying very hard not to give spoilers away, so I will just say that there are a good two or three plot arcs I didn't see coming. And that, too, is a good thing.

3) Jessa is also not afraid to leave you with a full on cliff hanging ending. While this may frustrate some, it didn't bother me at all. I liked it. Because, now I can see where it's headed for her book two, Evade. And I cannot wait to get my greedy, little reader paws on that book soon (call me, Jessa, I'm a great beta reader too! *winks!*).

4) Who doesn't love to proudly declare, "I'm on Team So-and-So!" while reading a YA novel? Seriously, it's fun. Admit it. So...whose team am I on? I WANT to be on Frankie's, I really do. And I am assuming Jessa will find a way with her trilogy to give them their chance to be together forever. That said, I am in lurv with Toby. I didn't want to be in the beginning, but I am. He totally won me over. It had absolutely NOTHING to do with the towel scene either. you can see, I'm clearly opinionated and infatuated with this trilogy. I think Jessa did a marvelous job with plot originality and surprises. I loved how even though it's paranormal, it felt more like just good, YOUNG, YA fiction. There wasn't crazy-over-the-top, in-your-face, kookie stuff happening. She didn't have to TRY TOO HARD. It was just a look at day to day life with Ever, who happens to see her dead love interest and then meets a hunky new boy whose love will end up costing her just about everything she could imagine. {Disclaimer: there are a few intimate scenes, and Ever is caught snuggling and snogging with a guy or two...but it's done harmlessly enough for the REAL young adult reader.}

Over the next few days, I will post my "formal" review on Amazon and Goodreads and update my "My 100" page with its star rating. But here's my review:

I loved it. Go out and buy it. For God's sake, the Kindle version is on sale right now for just $0.99. *score!* Follow Jessa and get to know a super cool lady and an amazing new writer. Plus, she's just cuter than a circus peanut! 'Nuff said.

Jessa Russo: * website * Goodreads * Amazon * Twitter * Facebook *
Publisher: Curiosity Quills Press & Photographer: Face On By Tamara

About Ever
Seventeen-year-old Ever's love life has been on hold for the past two years. She's secretly in love with her best friend Frankie, and he's completely oblivious. Of course, it doesn't help that he's dead, and waking up to his ghost every day has made moving on nearly impossible.

Frustrated and desperate for something real, Ever finds herself falling for her hot new neighbor Toby. His relaxed confidence is irresistible, and not just Ever knows it. But falling for Toby comes with a price that throws Ever's life into a whirlwind of chaos and drama. More than hearts are on the line, and more than Ever will suffer.

Some girls lose their hearts to love. Some girls lose their minds. Ever Van Ruysdael could lose her soul.


  1. Ah! I think you've managed to land the spot of my very FAVORITE REVIEW EVER! (Unfortunately, there is no trophy for this, but still.)

    Thank you so much, Colleen! I was a smiling fool the entire time I read this!

    I'd love for you to read EVADE when it's finished!

    1. Woo-hoo! Just the honorary award is enough =) I still need to go do my "official" GR & Amazon reviews and I will tomorrow, I promise! It's just been a brutal week. But I know how critical reviews are and I love being able to share my excitement over good books & authors! I'm on the edge of my seat for Evade! More naked Toby, please! =)