Monday, December 19, 2011

Everblue by Brenda Pandos

Everblue by Brenda Pandos
Release Date – July 30, 2011
Publisher Website – Obsidian Mountain Publishing
Publisher Social Media - Twitter
Pages - 304 pages
My Rating- 8/10
**won from the lovely Evie at Bookish**

Here is the Goodreads synopsis

She wanted her life to change... he wanted his to stay the same.

Best friends share everything with each other. Or do they? Seventeen-year-old Ashlyn Frances Lanski is tired of her boring, single life. Spending time with her best friend Tatiana, dreaming about kissing Tatiana's twin brother Fin, and swimming competitively are her only sanctuary. The girls plan to leave their drab lakeside town far behind for college. But when Tatchi fails to return home after a family emergency, and no one knows where the family has gone, Ash chooses to do something drastic to find them.

Ashlyn is about to discover what she'd thought to be true her whole life, wasn't, and the truth, too fantastical to imagine. Secrets lurk beneath the deep blue waters of Lake Tahoe, secrets that will change Ashlyn's life forever.

I haven’t read too many books about merpeople. They seem to be a new trend for 2012 though, and what a way to test the waters! Everblue is filled with romance, intrigue and some great world building.

The narration is split into two characters, Ashlyn and Fin. Each has a very distinct voice, and personality. It added to the story to see both sides and with Fin we get access to things Ashlyn doesn’t know about (and vice versa). The writing itself keeps your interest and I liked how the novel is balanced between the regular world of Ashlyn and the merworld of Fin.

The characters we get to know most are Ashlyn and Fin. I liked both of them. I found Ashlyn determined, a little head strong, and a true friend. Fin seemed very typical of a teenage guy. He wanted to impress his parents, be with the girl he is crushing on and fit in. Ashlyn’s best friend Tatchi was likeable as well. She wanted to be free of the expectations put on her, not forced into things, and make her own choices.

The mythology in this story is really what kept my interest. The rules, and customs were fascinating. To these merpeople a kiss creates a bond that is everlasting. It creates a need to be with that person, to protect them, and to keep them happy. It’s their way of getting “married“. Imagine the complications just from a single kiss. What if someone took your choice away and kissed you against your will? What if you were forced into an arranged “marriage” by your parents?

The romance in the novel is intense due to the extra magical element of the bonding that happens. I never found it too much though due to the magical element.

I love diving into what makes characters tick. A lot can motivate someone - love, fear, and greed to name a few. What I like about this novel is that there are motivations behind the characters, some hidden and other apparent right away. I loved the political side of things with the King and how it impacted the merpeople.

The world inhabited by the merpeople is fantastically written. So developed I could picture their underwater kingdom. Brenda has created not just a detailed mythology but a world that is just as intricate.

This novel is the first in a series (I believe) and while it does leave some things unresolved and sets up the next book wonderfully, it totally stands on it’s own. I am excited to find out more about all of the characters when the next book is released.

I am glad I took the chance, dove in, and read my first mer novel. It left me wanting more.


  1. I don't think I've read ANY books with mermaids (that I can remember)... but with the influx coming out in 2012, I so want to dive under the sea and discover their awesomeness. Everblue sounds like a fantastic novel to start with, the mythology is already captivating me. So intrigued by this whole 'kiss' bond you mention.

    And... well, EVERYTHING you say about this is only making me want it more and more. In-depth characters and an intense romance? Damnit Kathy, must bump this up on my TBR now :P Amazing review!

  2. I love the cover for this one! I haven't read many books, if any, about merpeople. I'm definitely interested in checking it out though!

  3. This lovely and accessible middle grade novel, written for girls, is also beautiful and layered enough to delight their mothers. When Ava, a motherless girl, nears thirteen, she begins to grow feathers. Ashamed at first, she tries to hide them, until she realizes the magical world they open up.


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