Author: Veronica Rossi
Genre: YA, dystopia, PNR, urban fantasy, sci-fi
Publication Date: January 8, 2013 (HarperTeen – North America)
Source: Edelweiss Review Copy
Summary: It’s been months since Aria last saw Perry. Months since Perry was named Blood Lord of the Tides, and Aria was charged with an impossible mission. Now, finally, they are about to be reunited. But their reunion is far from perfect. The Tides don’t take kindly to Aria, a former Dweller. And with the worsening Aether storms threatening the tribe’s precarious existence, Aria begins to fear that leaving Perry behind might be the only way to save them both.
Threatened by false friends, hidden enemies, and powerful temptations, Aria and Perry wonder, Can their love survive through the ever night?
☆: 4.5/5 stars – SO much hurting never felt so good!
Review: Rossi’s done it again, folks. If anything, I’d say “Through the Ever Night” beats out its predecessor in almost all technical areas – character development, worldbuilding, plot/arc development, and sensory imagery/language. The amount of depth and the amount of development, period, in this next installment in the Ever/Never trilogy really just blew me away. Even if you weren’t impressed with the first book, I highly urge you to change your mind and read this second book. Rossi grew by leaps and bounds, and when that happens with a recently-debuted author, it’s really a joy to watch.
Seriously, guys, I’m not exaggerating when I say that Rossi improved in pretty much every single area. Expanded worldbuilding? You got it. Deeper characters? Yep. We finally get to see Liv and Roar in action (aside from the novella)? Yes we do. So, so much angst in this one (for good reasons, not useless teenage pining angst, either), and I don’t think it’s ever felt quite this good. There’s a lot of hurting that goes on in this book for everyone, but it makes them grow. Rossi has really made her characters better and stronger, and for that, for having the courage to mercilessly torture her characters to get an absolutely wonderful emotional payoff? I tip my hat to her.
Let’s start with the world – we get to see the world beyond the land of the Tides, and that of Marron’s hold and Reverie which we got to see in the last book. This time we go to the Horns’ territory, the Rim, and at the end, we even get a sneak peek at where the Still Blue may be located. Ugh, to end on such a cliffhanger, I’d usually be shaking my fist out of frustration for taking the easy way out, but Rossi does it well by not only offering us a cliffhanger as to where the Still Blue may be located, but she also offers us decent closure for this book as a standalone within the trilogy (if that makes sense). As in, if this series were to end with this book, I’d be okay with it, because I’d feel enough closure. Maybe not enough concerning the tease about the Still Blue and Hess’ plans to usurp it, but otherwise in every other area? I’m totally fine with that. And I was surprised to feel that way once I got to the end of the book. And it was a good kind of surprise. The imagery for the world – from the wet sea of the Tides to the frosty mountain steppes of the Rim – all of it was drop-dead gorgeous, and the sensory imagery was incredible. BRAVO.
We get to see our characters really move and grow in this one – the most of which belongs to Perry as a fellow MC, and to Roar, who we really get to see more of in order to make him a fellow MC to Aria and Perry. There’s a really great bromance (with the slightest hint of love triangle, but thankfully Rossi doesn’t go there!) between Aria, roar, and Perry happening, and I really love it. Specifically, the bromance that develops between Roar and Aria was pretty impressive, and I’m glad that Rossi decided not to go into love triangle territory between them. Why? Because it would have been taking the easy way out. Sometimes the hardest thing is to love someone you have feelings for (though you may not be able to distinguish between romantic love/platonic love for them), and not act on it. Aria and Roar don’t, and that was incredibly gratifying to see. Aria grew quite a bit too, just so I don’t leave her out, but I do have to say that Perry, with taking on the Blood Lord title, really grew the most. He had to. And it wasn’t fun, or easy. There was a lot of pain, and a lot of work he put into it (and Rossi put into it), but it was for the better. This, alongside of the main cast bromance in Laini Taylor’s “Smoke and Bone” series, is now my favorite in all of YA. YES. I liked it that much. And seeing Liv…well, her with Roar, god, that was painful, but highly enjoyable.
As for the plot advancement – there were a few places where the pace did drop off a bit, which is why this doesn’t get a full five stars. But otherwise, I love the implications of Cinder being a former Dweller, and him possibly might not be the only one able to control aether. So what will happen to all of the Dwellers that Hess leaves behind? I really hope Rossi goes for the gold here and shows us the many possibilities that are here in terms of supernatural abilities, since Aria is half-Outsider, and Cinder is a former Dweller, and both have abilities as Scires. So, in terms of that, that was my biggest area of interest within the plot advancement in the “find the Still Blue” area of the plot. I definitely can’t wait for book three now, though I hope we get another novella to tide us over before the next release in 2014.
Final verdict? Even if it you weren’t the hugest fan of book one, you NEED to read book two, if just for all of the shiny new improvements and growth in all the technical areas of this book. I’m definitely off to go order my physical copy ASAP. “Through the Ever Night” is now available in North America through HarperTeen, so what are you waiting for? This didn’t make my best of 2013 list for nothing. Go and check it out as soon as you can!