Nevernight by Jay Kristoff

26114463Publication: August 9th 2016 by Thomas Dunne Books

Genres: Mature Adult, Fantasy

Format: eARC Source: Publisher via Netgalley

My Rating: 2.75 –3 Stars

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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?



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Arya Stark meets Prince Hamlet, in this dark fantasy full of killers. Did I love this book? No. Like it? Yes. However much I hate how it’s written, I still like the premise. Yet, it is with a sad heart that I can say I won’t be continuing on with this series. I am a reader who loves some deep words. This? This book is the holy grail of deep words. I appreciate colorful, rich fantasy. I love to picture the scenery that I’m reading about. I do not like when the author takes advantage of the use of metaphors. It takes the reader away from what is going on. Well, a reader like me anyway. I spent too much time repeating phrases, and not enough really getting to know the characters and their agendas. And please please please do not mistake this book for YA. Yes, the characters are young, but this is no book for anyone under the age of 18. SEX Drugs Rock and Roll, Violence, and foul language are abundant throughout.

Kristoff is a great writer, no doubt about it. I like my fantasy very well written, but this format doesn’t work for me. I haven’t thought this hard reading a book since I read Animal Farm; or better yet, any Shakespeare that I had to read in high school. I think if you can read this book fast, without having to think twice about something, then there’s a good chance you will absolutely love this. Once Mia gets to the Red Church, it all starts coming together. Tric is a character that I was suspicious of at first meet. It just seemed like his and Mia’s meeting wasn’t coincidental. I’m very paranoid. LOL! As Mia and Tric show off their skills and the action picks up, I began to settle down. But then, something would be said, and I’m right back to working my brain overtime. This was a very hard book to get through. 

I like the feel of the Red Church. I could picture Mia and the others training there. As more of the story took shape, more of Mia’s history is told. Revenge is a dish best served cold, would be an apt saying for this story. Though, by the end it doesn’t fit Mia’s character because she has learned a lot. I think “like” is as far as I can get with this story. It took a little over a week to get finished because I kept putting it down. I can’t see myself trudging through this series. If all the books are written like this (and I’m pretty sure they will. Makes no sense to change the format), then I just can’t go on. OAN: looking forward to Gemina!  

I can’t tell anyone how to spend their money, but please really consider borrowing this from the library, in case you don’t like it. That way if you do love it, you can buy it for your shelf. It’s an acquired taste. This is not Illuminae. I can’t give this book more stars because I like the author’s other work, or because I don’t want to be the “black sheep”. I think I’m being generous with my 2.75 – 3 stars. It’s not bad, but it was not a great reading experience for me. 



32 thoughts on “Nevernight by Jay Kristoff

  1. Great honest review! i like that you gave us what you thought — the speech/footnotes sound a bit insufferable, especially for a genre I don’t gravitate to reading anyway!


  2. Everyone seems to want to read this one because the author contributed to Illuminae. This is the first review of the book that I have seen so I find it so interesting to hear your thoughts about this book. It seems like it wasn’t written as well as you expected it to be, and that the metaphors were detailed and yet only seemed to serve as a distraction from the rest of the book. And that this lent more towards the adult side of things than you expected. I’m still eager to try it, but I have lowered my expectations a fair bit.


  3. Oof, I haven’t seen a glowing review of this one yet. Now I’m getting more and more worried that I won’t like it either. Purple prose and overly verbose writing is a big no-no for me. I thought his Lotus War trilogy suffered from the same, shame to hear that has not changed.


  4. I appreciate your warning about the writing style. Sometimes I don’t mind the challenge of words, but generally, I don’t want to have to work so hard to get into a book. I might try it at some point, but definitely reading Gemina when I get the chance.


  5. This really was such a..weird read wasn’t it? Not at all what I was expecting. I really need to read the author’s other stuff I think to get a better feel for their writing. This just didn’t do it for me.


    • I have only read Illuminae, and it is amazing. Of course, I can’t give Kristoff all the credit since it was co-penned. I might try one of his other books and see if I like it. I just don’t think I’ll be following this series. Similes and metaphors galore!


  6. It is really hard when the reading keeps you from slipping in and becoming a part of the world. I am curious about the Red Barn. I have not tried any of this author’s solo work, but do love high fantasy. I would love to see a sampling and will watch for that from publisher.


  7. I’ve never read Illuminae (but I’ll definitely fix that soon). I’ve only seen other bloggers talk so greatly about this book. I’m not good with too much metaphors and I hate rereading things a lot (it makes me read even slower). Yet I’m still quite interested in this one though. Hmmmm… Decisions…


  8. I just read Ali’s review for this one and she had very similar issues to you. It sounded like such a cool book, but I think I’ll be better off not reading it. I struggle with flowery writing with lots of metaphors and no doubt, this will be one that I also struggle with. :/


    • Purple prose aside, the world and characters aren’t unique, but I think the premise has weight. I really wish he hadn’t shown us how clever he is. Especially with a fantasy book. Save that writing for another story. I was so looking forward to this one, and was disappointed.


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