Release Date: January 2nd 2018
In the kingdom of Sempera, time is currency—extracted from blood, bound to iron, and consumed to add time to one’s own lifespan. The rich aristocracy, like the Gerlings, tax the poor to the hilt, extending their own lives by centuries.
No one resents the Gerlings more than Jules Ember. A decade ago, she and her father were servants at Everless, the Gerlings’ palatial estate, until a fateful accident forced them to flee in the dead of night. When Jules discovers that her father is dying, she knows that she must return to Everless to earn more time for him before she loses him forever.
But going back to Everless brings more danger—and temptation—than Jules could have ever imagined. Soon she’s caught in a tangle of violent secrets and finds her heart torn between two people she thought she’d never see again. Her decisions have the power to change her fate—and the fate of time itself. – GR
I got this book in December’s Fairyloot box as a Christmas present and I was so excited as it meant I could read interchangeably between the physical book and the e-arc I received from Netgalley. Plus, the UK cover is stunning. I was keeping my expectations under control, having not heard a great deal of hype or negative reviews, and I was surprised!
The unique selling point of this book is without a doubt, the magic system. This fantasy world uses time like currency, and can be extracted and ingested through blood iron. I haven’t come across this concept but of course, I could be mistaken. From my view, it was so different and interesting. This approach to time is so exciting for the reader and writer in me because time suddenly becomes so malleable. There’s just so much scope for a really intriguing, good kind of what the hell is going on? We got to see some of this in this first book but I’m hoping we get to see a whole lot more in the future. I find narrative structure quite difficult but I wish I’d come up with this idea!!
Jules as a main character was good. I really enjoyed the relationship she had with her father. It was very real and as a result, packed that emotional gut punch without it seeming like it was trying too hard to do it. As this is the first book in a series, Jules has all the makings of being a very good, multi-faceted character in the later books. For me, in this one, she was okay. Which is good! I’m quite hard to please with characters in fantasy and that’s just a me-thing so someone else may completely adore/hate her.
The plot itself, again, was good. It was fairly straightforward and I spotted a lot of the twists from the beginning, but it didn’t seem like Sara Holland was trying too hard to conceal a few of them, so perhaps they were intentional. The last twist, I did not expect. No spoilers, but I really loved that character.
Just a note, as there is a lot of instances of characters cutting their skin to access blood/time, I’d be cautious if self-harm is triggering for you. Though it has a practical function in the book, there are direct descriptions which might be harmful to someone in recovery if they’re not expecting it. Take care of yourselves!
I’m extremely excited for this series. I think it could end up being brilliant. (What happened to keeping my expectations in control?)
Have you read Everless? Let me know in the comments and we can discuss!
Until the next time!