Monday, July 20, 2009

Review (SS4): Evernight by Claudia Gray

Tags: YA, paranormal, vampires, boarding school, vampire hunters

Rating: 2 out of 5


Bianca Olivier’s parents are new teachers at the boarding school Evernight Academy, and Bianca just knows that she has to get out of Evernight. The students are distant, sophisticated, and creepy; Bianca feels like she doesn’t belong.

Then she meets Luke. He makes her feel complete, and it’s not long before they are inseparable. But Luke acts mysterious sometimes, and Bianca can’t figure him out…until disaster strikes. Suddenly, old family secrets are revealed, and the two young lovers’ lives may be in grave danger.


The first reaction I had when I finished this book was, wow, I’m glad it’s over. That doesn’t bode well for the first sentence of a review, but I’m going to try to explain why EVERNIGHT gave me a headache and had me rolling my eyes through every page.

Don’t get me wrong: there are some good parts to this book. I really liked the concept of a boarding school for vampires; the gothic towers and rooms of Evernight reminded me vaguely of Hogwarts, which was cool. The idea that Gray presents readers of a world where immortal vampires are constantly struggling to fit in, and need to be taught technology, was intriguing, although not as well developed as it could’ve been.

I really liked the tension between vampires and the human vampire hunters, even though the motivations for the vampire hunters’ actions were not well explained. And finally, I was a fan of the huge twist halfway through the book that everyone likes to talk about. Books with unreliable narrators are difficult to pull off, and Bianca’s revelation to us was shocking, yet satisfying at the same time.

However, EVERNIGHT fell flat in all other aspects. Bianca was difficult to like: she constantly feels the need to tell readers things about herself and the world around her, things that we didn’t need to know—like the fact that she’s supposedly shy, even though there’s no indication of shyness beyond the general awkwardness of adolescence among a new crowd—or could have inferred in the hands of a more skilled writer. Similarly, none of the other characters were interesting, least of all Luke. I rolled my eyes at the stilted dialogue and forced attraction between the two, felt my eyelids start to slide shut at the unbearably slow pace of the novel.

I read EVERNIGHT for the express purpose of finding out what that plot twist was, but it wasn’t worth it. Lovers of vampire lit might be interested in the world that Gray has tried to spin, but newcomers to the genre would be better off with other vampire series, such as Richelle Mead’s Vampire Academy.

Similar Authors
Richelle Mead (Vampire Academy)
Stephenie Meyer
Aprilynne Pike
P. C. Cast (House of Night)

Writing: 2/5
Characters: 2/5
Plot: 2/5
Want more? No thanks.

Overall Rating: 2 out of 5

Cover discussion: 2.5 out of 5 - Well, I don't have a problem with it. I like the glossy-on-matte monochromatic look/feel--even if it doesn't have anything to do with the story.


  1. I really liked this book when I read it. I do agree with you about Bianca's supposed shyness, though. I would have liked to have seen some actual shyness!

  2. I couldn't finish this one, though I have to say it came at a point when I was being rather picky, so you did better than me. The characters didn't mesh well with me either.
    Thanks for the review and hope the next ss read is to your liking.

  3. I'm tired of all of these vampire school novels. I've seen it enough in anime/manga so to see it leaked into YA fiction is ugh. But that's just me.

  4. I think i'll skip this one...

    I don't get why 100 year old vampires would go to high school. I just don't get it!

  5. I'm with Diana. Vampires are everywhere now I'm sick of them LOL. Btw this book has a sequel right? Can't wait to hear what you think of it ^^

  6. I couldn't even finish this one. It gave me a serious case of verbal potty mouth, eye rolls included.

  7. I totally disagree. I loved Evernight and can not wait to read Stargazer. It was not the best book I have ever read, but I have read a lot of books and I thought this was a worthy book. If you seriously want to criticize a book read Otherworldlies. I guess everyone is intitled to their opinons, but I found it to be a very enjoyable read and i could not put the book down.


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