My name is Ardis and I am an avid reader and budding writer. I want to share my love of books with others. I work with kids and am interested in finding and creating books that will ignite the reader in everyone. Contact me at: ardis.atkins@gmail.com

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Thursday, August 4, 2016

ARC Review: Nevernight by Jay Kristoff


Please note:  I received an ARC copy of this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.  This does not influence the opinions of my review in any way.

Synopsis (From GoodReads):
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.


I have thought about how I was going to write this review for a long time.  Yes, I loved it.  But I also found it quite unsettling, as well.  In this novel, the main character, Mia, seeks to become an assassin and must become an apprentice to the Red Church to do this.  The assassin school is a sort of ultra-violent Hogwarts (they are learning to be killers  after all).  The scenes of brutality are tough to get through and you feel as though you, yourself, have gone through the ordeals. 



What I liked:

I really loved the alliances, life or death puzzles and other obstacles in this book.  It was great to think you had things figured out and then realize something else was happening.  I love misdirection!

The story is also extremely well-written with  creative creatures and settings.  Three are desert monsters, creepy (literal) blood baths, and more poison than I have ever seen in a YA book.  The city seems to have a Venetian Renaissance aesthetic to it, with seedy taverns, lavish palaces, and stunning clothes to match. There is even a masquerade!

What I was mixed about:

Yes, I am about to sound like a prude, but I was really thrown by the two graphic sex scenes.  Why am I more upset about the sex scenes and not about the extreme violence?  Great question.  My answer is one I have thought about for weeks.  Yes, the violence is unsettling, but in a book about assassins it is to be expected.  But the sex scenes were between a sixteen-year old and a seventeen-year old.  Why this would upset me so much?  I talked with my husband about it.  He then asked me this important question, "Would you be as shocked if the characters were older?" to which I answered, "No."

I think that, as someone from the United States, I consider these characters to be minors.  Jay Kristoff, the author of Nevernight, lives in Australia where the age of consent is sixteen.  Of course I know that teens have sex.  But I don't want a blow by blow account of what goes on between kids.  That is creepy!  Let us know what is happening and then fade to black, please.


I need to say this again:  I did love this book!


But my personal discomfort is making me take off half a star.  Otherwise it is perfection.




Release Date:  August 9th, 2016

Source:  NetGalley

Format:  ARC E-book

Recommendation:  With it's extreme violence and graphic sex scenes this is for older teens and adults only!  Full of twists and turns.

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1 comment :

  1. I haven't read one of his books yet. I tried reading Illuminae but couldn't get into it. This sounds like a really interesting book. I definitely feel like there should be a disclaimer if there isn't one already about there being heavy violence and graphic sex scenes.


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