Evermore by Alyson Noel

Evermore: The ImmortalsSince a horrible accident claimed the lives of her family, sixteen-year-old Ever can see auras, hear people’s thoughts, and know a person’s life story by touch.   Going out of her way to shield herself from human contact to suppress her abilities has branded her as a freak at her new high school—but everything changes when she meets Damen Auguste . . . 

Ever sees Damen and feels an instant recognition.  He is gorgeous, exotic and wealthy, and he holds many secrets.  Damen is able to make things appear and disappear, he always seems to know what she’s thinking—and he’s the only one who can silence the noise and the random energy in her head.  She doesn’t know who he really is—or what he is.  Damen is equal parts light and darkness, and he belongs to an enchanted new world where no one ever dies.

-Description courtesy of Amazon.com

This book has been on my To Read list forever, and now that I've finally gotten around to reading it, I wish I had pushed it to the top of the list sooner. 

At first, the story has a few odd parallels to that vampire novel that must not be named: Antisocial Girl transfers to a new school and can't help but notice Gorgeous-But-Strange Boy. Antisocial Girl alternates between obsessing over Gorgeous-But-Strange Boy and trying NOT to obsess over him. G-B-S Boy disappears from school frequently for no apparent reason; he speaks like he is from another century and appears to be independently wealthy. Not to mention the mind reading and "vampires." To be honest, the similarities were a bit off-putting at first.

However, after the first few chapters, I forgot about all of that. Ever is an interesting character, conflicted and gifted with strange abilities, including that of seeing and communicating with her dead little sister Riley. While not a new convention by any means, it added depth to the story. Riley's visits help Ever move forward with her life, while still grieving for the life she lost. 

The mystery of Damen occupies most of Ever's attention, and thus the reader's attention as well. I found him at times annoying (when he was being rude and infuriating, frustratingly closed off to Ever) and charming. I did feel he wasn't as fully developed as Ever and Riley; I don't have as clear a picture of his mind and motives. Perhaps that will be remedied in future books.

Alyson Noel is what I call a visual writer: she can describe scenes in such a way that you get a clear picture of what is happening, but not so that you realize you are reading a descriptive passage. It's a gift, one that disappointingly few authors possess.

The next book in the series, Blue Moon, has already been moved to the top of my reading list; there are five books in the series so far, as well as a new book from Riley's point of view, which I'd probably skip ahead to if I wasn't so particular about reading a series in order. 

Evermore is one of those rare books you will find yourself staying up all night reading....and then dreaming about...and then thinking about the next day. It's a love story with a paranormal twist that will appeal to readers of all ages.

Teaser Quote:

"Though I have to admit, I had a good laugh when I realized you thought I was a bloodsucker." He smiles.

"Oh, well excuse me. I mean since there are immortals running around, I figure we may as well bring on the faeries, wizards, werewolves, and-" I shake my head. "I mean jeez, you talk about all this like it's normal!" 
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