Not-a-Review: Nevernight by Jay Kristoff

Genre: NOT YA, Fantasy
Page count: 427
Originally published: July 2016

Nevernight is the story of Mia Corvere, an orphan wrought from foiled rebellion. With only a shadow to call friend, she seeks the knowledge and skills to avenge her family. To become this master of murder, Mia travels to the Red Church where she is flung into the toils of murder, friendship, enmity, secrets, and yes, more murder.

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Character: YAAASSSS!!!
Worldbuilding: YAAASSSS!!!
Flow: Rereader
Entertainment value: YAAASSSS!!! [ ★★★★★]
Did I enjoy this book? YESYESES!!!
Do I think the read a waste of time? Stupid question… no.
Would I read it again? Heck yes!!!

Rating: YAAASSSS!!!

5 stars

This book has everything I love: a s***ton of worldbuilding, great characters, dark and twisty things, murder, and amazing prose to top it all off!
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If you’re looking for something a bit more in depth, a bit more personal, feel free to keep reading. If not, congratulations! That’s it! You’re done! Now, go read a book (or not)!

“The brighter the light, the deeper the shadow.”

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?

I really enjoyed Mia’s character. She doesn’t take s*** from anyone. She knows what she wants and she goes for it. And her best friend is the most exquisite not-animal companion, complete with a wit sharp enough to kill. I loved the banter between the two characters. In fact, I loved the banter between all of the characters, friendly or not.

“Sometimes weakness is a weapon. If you’re smart enough to use it.”

Mia is a murderer with morals, a trait which led to the only thing in this book that reeaaalllyy tickled my frustrate-a-tron buttons. Actually, it kind of slammed it’s goodie-two-shoes fist into them. But, without that trait, the plot would’ve been deadpan and the character would have no depth. So all-in-all, I’m thankful for it. We all could do with a little frustration in our lives.

“before i found you, i was just a shape waiting in the shadows . . .”

Stabbing, both front and back?
Did I mention Murder?
Once it started, the plot doesn’t really slack in this book. And the final twist at the end had me screaming. Maybe I’m just dense, but I DID NOT see it coming AT ALL. I know this book has been out for a while, but if you haven’t read it (and you can deal with the purple prose) then do yourself a favor and READ IT!

This is exactly my type of worldbuilding. There are so many layers to Itreya. Politics. Culture. Class. Religion. Economics. History. MAPS!! Pretty much any aspect of worldbuilding you can think of is in this book, and every bit of it is well done. I’ll admit, when I first noticed the footnotes I was filled with dread and thought that they would absolutely ruin the book for me. It didn’t take long for me to look forward to the tidbits of sarcastic commentary and worldbuilding.

As I said, the prose is pretty dense and, from what I can gather, it’s the thing that turns most people off from this book. I found reading this book pretty slow going at first, but the very first sentence had me absolutely hooked and I was determined to see it through to the end. And I’m so glad I did!

“People often shit themselves when they die. Their muscles slack and their souls flutter free and everything else just…slips out.”

Once I got used to the writing style, about 100 pages in, it didn’t stick out like a sore thumb anymore and I found the pace of my reading picked up and I started to really enjoy this book. And did I mention the sarcasm? Sarcasm can get us through anything in life! Not to mention, it was definitely a great contrast that brought some life to the flowery prose.

Entertainment value:
I LOVED this book!! That being said, I can see why a lot of people don’t. The prose is quite heavy. That being said, I cannot imagine this book being written in any other style of writing! It just fits Mia’s story and her world so perfectly. The story does take some time to really pick up because of the writing style, but I love some purple prose and I was too caught up in the AMAZING worldbuilding to notice those slower moments. Jay Kristoff has managed to make murderers lovable, which is quite a feat. Plus the book ended by making some BIG promises for book 2! I’m pretty sure my boyfriend is relieved that I’m done this book so he doesn’t have to hear me talk about it anymore. Buuuuut the joke’s on him because I definitely won’t stop talking about Nevernight anytime soon, especially with book 2’s release this fall!

“Never Flinch.’ A cold whisper in her ear. ‘Never fear. And never, ever forget.’
The girl nodded slowly.
Exhaled the hope inside.
And she’d watched her father die.”

sign off

3 thoughts on “Not-a-Review: Nevernight by Jay Kristoff

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