I really enjoyed this book. I was captivated by the premise of it, and it’s definitely one of those books that gets better and better as it progresses. It does have cussing, A LOT of cussing, and we’ll get into that a bit later. I did really enjoy reading this book, and I’m so looking forward to diving into Lifeblood this weekend!
Firstlife by Gena Showalter
Tenley Lockwood is faced with an impossible decision that she will have to live with for the rest of eternity in Firstlife, so why not get a taste of forever yourself while you get your read on with this Forever Moscato?
*All wine recommendations are for strictly for those of legal drinking age only.*
It’s All In The Details
- Title: Everlife
- Author: Gena Showalter
- Publisher: Harlequin Teen
- Pub Date: February 23, 2016
- Pages: 467
NO SECOND CHANCE.
Tenley “Ten” Lockwood is an average seventeen-year-old girl…who has spent the past thirteen months locked inside the Prynne Asylum. The reason? Not her obsession with numbers, but her refusal to let her parents choose where she’ll live—after she dies.
There is an eternal truth most of the world has come to accept: Firstlife is merely a dress rehearsal, and real life begins after death.
In the Everlife, two realms are in power: Troika and Myriad, longtime enemies and deadly rivals. Both will do anything to recruit Ten, including sending their top Laborers to lure her to their side. Soon, Ten finds herself on the run, caught in a wild tug-of-war between the two realms who will do anything to win the right to her soul. Who can she trust? And what if the realm she’s drawn to isn’t home to the boy she’s falling for? She just has to stay alive long enough to make a decision…
This book has been on my backlist for a while, and I’m so excited that I FINALLY got around to reading it, and that I received an ARC of Showlater’s upcoming Lifeblood, so that I don’t have to wait to find out what comes next!
Tenley (Ten) was such a fascinating character. It was interesting to see her personality after having undergone the abuse and confinement of Prynne Asylum. I felt like Showalter’s depiction of a character in those circumstances was incredibly raw and real. Her portrayal of the other characters in the Asylum with Ten are equally well-done.
I felt that the whole concept of having a Secondlife after what we experience here on Earth, and one in which you have must choose to belong to one of two warring nations during your Firstlife or face dire consequences, was very creative and thought provoking.
Showalter really brings the world to life and does an excellent job at building tension by constantly increasing the stakes for Ten as she continues to struggle to choose which nation she wants to belong to once she dies, and also by constantly pushing the nations of Troika and Myriad closer and closer to all-out war.
She presents the pros and cons of both nations in a way that will have you flipping back and forth between which nation you would want to belong to yourself as often as Ten does.
I highly recommend this book, and I am so excited for Lifeblood to be out in the world on February 28th!!
Let’s Talk Cussing in YA
I really, REALLY hope that some of you will comment on this portion of my review, because I am, admittedly, a little bit torn on this topic and would love to talk it out with all of you.
So there is A LOT of cussing throughout this book, particularly when Ten is in the Asylum. Now, in my opinion, that cussing makes complete sense in the situation, and I do think that most people, teens or adults, forced into that situation would have to develop that type of persona in order to survive their circumstances.
Now there are some particular curse words in this book that many people would consider offensive, and so the question I’m asking each of you today is, is it okay to have offensive language in YA?
If this were a book for adults, and it didn’t have that kind of language, people would be criticizing it for its lack of realness, rawness, and believability, but since this book is YA, do those same rules apply? Do we hold YA novels to higher standards than adult novels?
Do YA novels have more of an obligation to either reflect what our society should be or highlight that the bad things about our society are truly bad than adult novels do? Do YA novels need to set an example for the youth of our society, or do they have an obligation to expose them to the reality of our society and let them make their own decisions regarding morality?
I’ve been thinking through these questions over and over since I started reading this book, and honestly, I can see the pros and cons to both sides of the argument here. Ironically, I kind of feel like Ten trying to choose between Troika or Myriad.
So what are your thoughts? I’d truly love to hear them!
This cover is absolutely stunning. One of my very favorite YA covers in all honesty. The colors scheme is great. The hourglass perfectly reflects both Ten’s limited timeframe in which she must make a decision that will define the rest of her existence, as well as the realms of both Troika and Myriad. Ten points to Gryffindor for whoever designed this beauty.
While this book is very much about Ten and her journey and struggle to make the biggest decision of her life, it definitely has some SUPER swoony moments. While both Archer and Killian are incredibly swoon-worthy, I’m glad that Showalter didn’t go for an all out love triangle and made it pretty clear, at least in this book, which boy Ten prefers. Don’t get me wrong, I do love a good love triangle in the right book, but I don’t like to have them in EVERY book.
Gena Showalter is the New York Times and USA TODAY bestselling author of the spellbinding Lords of the Underworld, Otherworld Assassins, and Angels of the Dark series, as well as two young adult series–Everlife and the White Rabbit Chronicles–and the highly addictive Original Heartbreakers series. In addition to being a National Reader’s Choice and two time RITA nominee, her romance novels have appeared in Cosmopolitan (Red Hot Read) and Seventeen magazine. She was interviewed on Nightline and has been mentioned in Orange is the New Black. Her books have been translated in multiple languages.
She’s hard at work on her next novel, a tale featuring an alpha male with a dark side and the strong woman who brings him to his knees. You can learn more about Gena, her menagerie of rescue dogs, and all her upcoming books at genashowalter.com or Facebook.com/genashowalterfan
Photo by Debbie Bunch Photography
Other series written by Gena:
Alien Huntress, both adult and young adult
Intertwined, young adult
Atlantis, paranormal romance
What did you guys think of Firstlife? Have any of you read Lifeblood yet? And how do you feel about cussing in YA?