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Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Book Review: Nevermore by Kelly Creagh

TITLE: Nevermore 
SERIES: Nevermore, Book #1
AUTHOR: Kelly Creagh
PUBLISHER:  Atheneum Books for Young Readers
PUBLICATION DATE: August 31, 2010
FORMAT: Hardcover, 543 pages
GENRE: Young Adult, Fantasy/Paranormal
ISBN: 9781442402003
Cheerleader Isobel Lanley is horrified when she is paired with Varen Nethers for an English project, which is due—so unfair—on the day of the rival game. Cold and aloof, sardonic and sharp-tongued, Varen makes it clear he’d rather not have anything to do with her either. But when Isobel discovers strange writing in his journal, she can’t help but give this enigmatic boy with the piercing eyes another look.

Soon, Isobel finds herself making excuses to be with Varen. Steadily pulled away from her friends and her possessive boyfriend, Isobel ventures deeper and deeper into the dream world Varen has created through the pages of his notebook, a realm where the terrifying stories of Edgar Allan Poe come to life.

As her world begins to unravel around her, Isobel discovers that dreams, like words, hold more power than she ever imagined, and that the most frightening realities are those of the mind. Now she must find a way to reach Varen before he is consumed by the shadows of his own nightmares.

His life depends on it.


Nevermore is a bit of a dark tale with paranormal elements.

Isobel Lanley runs with the popular crowd in school. She’s a pretty high school cheerleader, and her boyfriend, Brad, is a jock from the football team. Her world gets shaken up when she is paired with the Goth boy, Varen Nethers, for an English project. Isobel and Varen are polar opposites: He dresses in dark clothing and has dyed black hair and a lip ring, and is a bit of a loner. On the other hand, Isobel is the “Queen Bee” who is always surrounded by a group of shallow friends. However, as she spends more time with Varen working on their project, she becomes more drawn to him. Her boyfriend, Brad, and his friends try to make Varen’s life miserable but that backfires when it results in Isobel becoming defensive and protective of her new friend. After one look at Varen, even her father is against her friendship with the Goth boy who looks like a dangerous hooligan!

Isobel and Varen choose Edgar Allen Poe as the subject of their English project, and strange things start to happen to Isobel as she spends more time with Varen. She sees and hears things that do not appear to make any sense. Somehow, Varen has something to do with these strange things but she cannot figure out how or why.

I love Creagh’s literary style! This book is mammoth-sized at nearly 550 pages, but I became so absorbed into the story that I didn’t want to put it down! I immediately liked Varen, even though he was so different, and I really liked how his friendship with Isobel blossomed. Creagh reminds us not to judge someone by their looks, and it is a good lesson to remember. By the way, I absolutely loved Gwen Daniels! She is the girl whose locker is next to Isobel's, and she strikes up a friendship with Isobel after her friends desert her over her newfound friendship with Varen. She is funny and a bit nutty, which is the perfect combination in a best friend. The book has a YA contemporary feel, but Creagh also weaves paranormal elements into the story. I don’t want to spoil it for anyone, but I was really surprised where Creagh went with the story and I didn’t immediately catch on to what was happening.

The cover is dark and mysterious, just like the book. I think Varen and Isobel are depicted perfectly, and you can see how utterly different they are and what a strange but beautiful match they make.

Overall, I really enjoyed the story which does end on a cliff-hanger. The second in the series, Enshadowed, was published last month and I cannot wait to find out what happens next!



  1. This has been one of my favorite books this year. I loved it! I really love the way Creagh depicted Isobel & Varen's friendship. At first, I was sure they'd get together, but as the story progressed, I stopped being so sure. I thought it might just end up being the one where the girl doesn't get the boy. I love it when a book keeps me guessing like that.

    I'm reading Enshadowed right now and WHAT?! It's blowing my mind already.

    Great review!

    1. Thanks, Ems! Enshadowed is next up on my list after I finish the book I'm currently reading. The wait is killing me. I need to know what happens next. I'm glad to hear how much you are enjoying it!

  2. I've had this in my TBR pile for ages and never seem to get around to it. Maybe after reading your review I should move it up higher in the pile. :)

    1. I recommend it, Lori! I hope you like it as much as I did!

  3. I loved it too, I just finished Enshadowed and it seems a long wait for the next entry. It is a good sign when 550 pages just fly by!

    1. Hi, roryeoconnor! I'm glad that I didn't have to wait two years for Enshadowed! Yes, it will seem like a long wait for the next one!


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