The wonderful Kari from Kari-ng for Books gifted me a copy of Nevernight and it sat on my shelves a while. But after putting it on my (failed) A-Z tbr for August, I felt motivated to pick it up. And damn am I glad I did!! This book packs a damn punch and I’m so excited to get to the rest of the books in the series!!
There are two things I want to say from the start. One is: this is an adult book, and it has swearing in it. This review will do too. Two is: Jay Kristoff has done some problematic things, it’s something that I’m aware of but that I need to research more as I currently don’t know enough about it. But I felt you should know.
Now. Onto the book.
FUCK this book is amazing!!! What I find most interesting about my experience reading this book is that it was a really slow one, a maximum of around 50 pages a day and that was taking me at least an hour to read (I usually read 100 pages an hour). Often when a book is that slow it really de-motivates me. But in this case? Shit I was so into this story! I couldn’t get enough! I wasn’t even mad that it was slow going because I was just enjoying the story so much!!
I adore every aspect of this book, the worldbuilding, the characters, the twists and the turns. The way that punches aren’t pulled and the magic of the world is revealed, the way that Kristoff makes you care so deeply for so many of these characters despite them being hugely flawed individuals? Fucking hell it’s amazing. Mia Corvere and Mr Kindly are some of my favourite characters now, and I can’t wait to read more from them!
This is a school/training environment within this book, and I found myself really enjoying that. It’s not something I’ve read in a while so I’m really glad that I know I can still enjoy it! There is a large influx of characters who aren’t really introduced in any depth, but there are also a lot of deaths so it doesn’t feel like it matters too much. You get to know them as much as Mia did before they disappeared out of her life.
The narrator is another beautiful aspect to this book. It’s done so well that in some parts you forget that they’re there at all and in others they’re key to your understanding. I also adored all of the footnotes present. I know some people skimmed over them in order to stay within the story but for me they added so much background and depth! It is quite a deep world, and I feel like the choice to read those footnotes or not could help those who don’t like high fantasy with intense worldbuilding as much to still enjoy the book. They’re extra bits you can read if you like, and can skip if you don’t care about the background of the world.
There are some sexy scenes in this book, and I expected to just be… fine? with them. But I really liked them! I liked that they walked the line very carefully and that it isn’t the main focus of the book but more of an extra look into the background of the characters lives. They also intertwine into the story in a realistic way, which I really liked. They weren’t completely separate from the plot but they also weren’t integral to it.
Towards the end of the book there is a little bit of interesting formatting. Nothing on the level of Illuminae (which Kristoff was a co-author of) but just a wee sprinkling, and it fit so perfectly with the plot. It was a beautiful artistic choice and I loved it!
If you like high fantasy books and are up for a bit of fucking, a bit of murder, and a damn good time, then this is 100% a book to pick up. I need to get my hands on the rest of the trilogy and I can’t wait to read them and fall in love!!! This is a world that has definitely went on my favourites and that I need to re-read in the future!!