Nevernight by Jay Kristoff
Published: July 25th 2016
“The books we love, they love us back. And just as we mark our places in the pages, those pages leave their marks on us. I can see it in you, sure as I see it in me. You’re a daughter of the words. A girl with a story to tell.”
Destined to destroy empires, Mia Covere is only ten years old when she is given her first lesson in death.
Six years later, the child raised in shadows takes her first steps towards keeping the promise she made on the day that she lost everything.
But the chance to strike against such powerful enemies will be fleeting, so if she is to have her revenge, Mia must become a weapon without equal. She must prove herself against the deadliest of friends and enemies, and survive the tutelage of murderers, liars and demons at the heart of a murder cult.
The Red Church is no Hogwarts, but Mia is no ordinary student.
The shadows love her. And they drink her fear.
So I finally did it, I read Nevernight and I have a sinking feeling it may be one of my favourite books I’ve ever read. I apologise to everyone who has been telling me to read it these past few years, I’m sorry it took me so long to read it so that’s all that matters right?
I must admit I had some trouble at first, although the start is cleverly written it drags a little while the story is set up and you get used to the writing style as well as the footnotes. Footnotes probably don’t sound too bad but some of the ones in Nevernight are half a page long and yes, you could probably ignore them but honestly, some of them are hilarious, they’re fun and a lot of them are actually pretty interesting and tell little tales of their own. The main problem I had was not that they distracted from the story although they did do that a little it wasn’t too much of a problem it was more the fact that I kept losing my place after reading said footnote which was a little jarring. There are fewer footnotes as the book moves on and I got a bit better at keeping my place, I also listening to a fair bit of this via audiobook which reads them out as part of the story which is kind of perfect, to be honest. I’m not the hugest fan of the way the narrator reads the book, he sounds a bit off but after a while, you get used to the style and I find it preferable to getting lost reading footnotes.
Once Mia arrives at the Red Church (I wouldn’t class this as a spoiler as it’s part of the synopsis) things really pick up, I’ve affectionately named this part “Mia enrols in murder Hogwarts” because it totally has stabby Harry Potter vibes which feels like a weird way of describing this kind of book (which is an adult book by the way, as I’ve said before, a teenage protagonist does not a YA make and that is defintley the case here) but it just feels a good fit as you get to know Mia and the main characters.
Speaking of characters, I absolutely ADORE Mia. She’s sassy and even when she makes some not great choices she totally owns them which is one of my favourite qualities, it also helps that she could almost certainly murder me in under five seconds without me being any the wiser (if you’re into that sort of thing). She has vulnerable moments too (although there’s no way she’d ever admit to having actual feelings) but it helps to ground her and give her more depth instead of just making her an angry ball of revenge (she’s probably about 85% that as well though). The other church initiates are interesting and all have their own tales to tell and their own reasons to join the church as well as distinctive personalities which I loved learning throughout the book. I found Hush especially interesting and loved the relationship between Mia and Ashlin but Tric stole my damned heart. Mr Kindly also holds a special place in my heart, a sarcastic black cat made of shadows? It’s like he was written for me.
As previously mentioned, the first third dragged a little but was still enjoyable, the rest of the book absolutely flew by and I couldn’t turn the pages fast enough, I’m shocked I didn’t manage to rip them, especially towards the end. There’s a particular moment that feels like it comes out of nowhere and punches you in the face. I reread this part about four times because I wasn’t sure I’d read it right at first and when I realised I had…I might have thrown my book across the room I’m not gonna lie.
This book absolutely rocked my world and at writing this I’m already about 200 pages through Godsgrave, I’m not sure how ready I am for the third book in the trilogy not long after.
If you’ve already read Nevernight and want to know my thought on some of the more spoilery aspects of the book you can check out my book talk video below!