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Ever (Ever, #1)

Ever (Ever, #1) - Jessa Russo Warnings this review will contain the following: cursing, and other assorted negative language, gifs and other images, and rage mixed with a large dollop of indifference.I received a copy of this book from NetGalley, and I would like to thank them, the author, and publisher for giving me a chance to read and review it. All opinions stated below are my own, and are not influenced in any way by any of the above stated parties, the FSM, or the movement of heavenly bodies. In the beginning there was Ever (it's a nickname, but still), and she was madly in love with her next door neighbor who was tragically killed before she was brave enough to act on her feelings. Now he haunts her, and she will never ever love another. She is empty, and alone living without her one true love. She is the man in black. No, wait, she's not Johnny Cash, but she does wear only black as we are reminded time, and time again in this book. Her friend Jessie, by contrast wear only pink, and is popular, and bubbly. This leads me to one of my first major issues with this book: lack of depth. The characters felt more like archetypes to me rather than real people. Ever is the broody one, and Jessie is boy crazy, and the life of the party (I will give this book some credit because Ever never once slut shames Jessie for her serial dating). Nothing much is done to develop them as people beyond this, and it made for hollow reading for me.While I'm on the subject of fashion choices Ever's true love Frankie wears his hair in a pompadour. Are you fucking kidding me? A pompadour? I don't care how much you love the 50's, or whatnot; a pompadour, and Buddy Holly glasses in high school? Added to the fact he insists on addressing Ever as Dollface. Yeah, none of that really endears him to me. But I digress. Ever in the beginning tells us "I couldn't be with anyone else. I just couldn't...I'd never be normal again. I'd never have a normal life, a normal relationship...I'd never go on an official date" you get the picture. Now that her one true love was dead she was closing that door. More than a little melodramatic especially since not too much later she is head over heels for the new next door neighbor Toby, Mr. Black Leather. Which leads me to my next issue. Ever never seems to be able to hold more than one person in her head at one time. If she is with Frankie it's all about how much she loves him, but then when she's with Toby it's all about how much she loves him. Only when she steps away from either do feelings about the other even cross her mind. Which once again leads us to my next issue. All Ever thinks about, or talks about is Frankie and Toby. Sure, she thinks about Jessie, and the challenges she faces, but never for very long, and not enough to actually do anything to help her, or even listen to her in any deep, or heartfelt way. Ever suffers, what to anyone else, would be a devastating loss in their lives, and it fades in comparison to her boy drama. Just once I would have liked to see that she had some sort of life beyond boys; her love of reading, her interest in knitting, or her passion for Pre-Columbian Art, something, anything. For the "deep girl in black" character it seems like the author was trying to develop she is lacking in any sort of depth, and interest. Most of the time I just wanted her to shut the hell up when she started whining on, and on, and on.Her parents were weak, ineffective, and poorly developed. In one memorable scene Jessie's mother, and mother's boyfriend show up drunk, and the boyfriend is demanding Jessie return with them. In the end it is Toby who punches the boyfriend, and forces them to leave. Of course it is, because, being adults, her parents wouldn't do the sensible thing, and call the police especially since the boyfriend does everything, but hire a plane with a banner reading that he beat her mother before he drove over there (beer in hand). Later when Jessie tells them not to call the police, they do the right thing, and decide not to call. Good job.Then we reached what I thought was the light at the end of the tunnel, when Ever reacts badly when someone dumps her for "her own good." Finally, I thought, Ever is taking a stand, and making it known that she is not some fragile little princess.But alas, my relief was short lived. He comes back, tell her he loves her, and everything is magically better. Ever also spends the entire book ignoring the enormous hints dropped that Toby isn't exactly who he appears to be. It's not that she doesn't see the writing on the wall; it's that she makes a conscious decision to ignore every impulse, every instinct, every fucking dream that tells her something isn't quite right. When the big supernatural reveal happens I had passed the point at which I might have cared long ago. Soul collectors, really that's the best you could come up with? Why does it make me think of Pokemon? Then the evil nemesis Ariadne does something that, if this was a paperback would have made me throw the book across the room She brings Frankie back to life. Words fail me.That brings me to me last point, Ariadne. Just when I thought I could get through one of these ya novel without slut shaming it happens. "She was wearing a very skimpy navy-blue nightgown with ivory lace trim and lavender accents that I am sure would show her panties if even the slightest breeze kicked up. If she's wearing any. Was this seriously what she slept in while visiting her ex-boyfriend and his dad? Slut." Ariadne is older, sexually confident, and makes our heroine feel small, and insecure, so instead of dealing with her feelings she takes them out on the one who caused them. Ariadne is also smart with a vicious mouth, and is the character I like best out of everyone in the book. I am going to pass on the rest of the series because I just don't care what happens.