Monday, July 11, 2011

Everlost by Neal Shusterman


Author: Neal Shusterman

Publisher: Simon & Schuster

4½ out of 5 stars
You’re hurtling towards the light, going at full speed.  You don’t know where you are, what you’re doing, or what’s going on, but you do know that you need to make it to that distant light up ahead.  It seems like just a pinprick, but you’re steadily nearing it.  You seem to be in a tunnel-like structure with walls black as night.  Wind is rushing through your hair as it streams behind you.  You squint your eyes, not only because of the fierce wind, but because of the increasingly bright light.  A sensation of peace washes over you, and you know that everything is going to be alright… until another person slams into you and you go hurtling off course, the bright light becoming a fading pinprick.

Do you believe in life after death?  No matter your answer, yes, no, or maybe, what if I told you there was a place in between life and death?  Almost as if you were on your way to life after death, but instead you got stuck.  Well, there is… and it’s called Everlost.  Everlost is where all of the souls who didn’t get to where they’re going end up.  And it is here that they stay.

Nick and Allie both didn’t make it to where they were going.  After a fatal car crash, Nick and Allie are transported to Everlost.  Once they wake up, bemused and surprised, they are forced to quickly come to terms with their new reality.  Soon the two of them learn that they are, in fact, dead and there’s nothing they can do about it.

As they journey across the face of Everlost, they slowly learn more and more about it.  It has a sort of “leader,” Mary Hightower, Queen of Snots, who many of the lost souls look up to.  The souls that live in Everlost are called Afterlights, and give off a faint glow.  If you stand in one spot for too long you will sink to the center of the Earth.  And most importantly, you will never be able to live again... or so they say.

As Nick and Allie struggle to cope with these new rules in this strange land, they slowly learn that everything is not quite as it seems.  There are many parts of Everlost that have yet to be explored, and some Afterlights are hiding more than they know.  Will Allie be able to unlock Everlost’s true secrets, or will she be stuck here forever?  Has Nick finally found a place he feels he can call home?  Neal Shusterman reveals all in his unique story of two Afterlight’s quest to learn more about themselves and their new world, as they enter a whole new chapter of their lives in, Everlost!

This book held so many new surprises that there are too many to count!  With an eerie edge, Everlost is a fresh read that will capture the interest of readers everywhere.  I was filled with a nervous excitement as I travelled with Nick and Allie across Everlost, learning all about this land for the dead along the way.  I recommend this book for teens as well as adults, as they will be enraptured by Neal Shusterman’s intense storytelling.

One of my favorite aspects of Neal Shusterman’s books is his way of building a world out of words, and shaping it as if it has truly been there forever.  Everlost was no exception, and it was so much fun reading about the rules, people, monsters, and secrets of the land of Everlost.  When Nick and Allie arrived in Everlost, it was as if they had to learn everything all over again.  They had no idea where they were or what was going on.  This presented a wonderful backdrop for me to get a chance and learn about Everlost while they did too.  Things such as how the world of the living fades and is harder to focus on, or how you can sink to the center of the Earth made Everlost all the more believable.

Everything tied together very nicely when all was said and done.  In Neal Shusterman’s book, Unwind, this was also evident, but I felt even more-so in Everlost.  Certain events and characters all seemed to fall perfectly in place by the end of the book, leaving me feeling satisfied, yet still craving for more.  I don’t want to give anything away, but many new predicaments have arisen in the world of Everlost, and I can’t wait to read more about them in the sequel, Everwild.

I’ve noticed that Neal Shusterman tends to do little things that always add greatly to the story.  For example, in between each chapter there was a short little excerpt.  Many of the excerpts were from one of Mary Hightower’s books.  Each excerpt would pertain to that chapter and it was very interesting to read about one character’s beliefs and thoughts on certain subjects.  On the other hand, it was also a lot of fun to see how some characters’ thought very differently about some of the same subjects talked about in the excerpt.  Things like this helped keep me interested and push the story of Everlost along as well.

It was a bit hard for me to get into Everlost at first, and I think that this might be contributed to the fact that I was comparing this to Unwind, the other book of Neal Shusterman’s that I have read.  The story really picked up for me when Nick and Allie started to go their own ways and find out who they really are.  Even though they had started out together when they had arrived in Everlost, they were slowly starting to figure out where they belonged and fit in.  As everything started to come together, I was able to connect the dots, and soon I couldn’t turn the pages fast enough!

Everlost is a fresh new novel that takes a look at just what might be awaiting us on our way to the light.  An eerie read that will have you wondering what really lies beyond death.  Join Nick and Allie as they struggle to come to terms with what they are now, and discover the secrets about this mysterious new world in, Everlost!
-This is T.B. with Another Book Back on the Shelf…
Until Next Time, Keep Reading!

Neal Shusterman signed my copy of Everlost!

Check out Neal Shusterman's website at


  1. I love how you love books I loved! :P If you liked this one, wait for Everwild; it will take you on a roller coaster!

  2. Ooh this sounds really interesting. It sounds like this book helps you to think really deeply about things we normally don't consider, which is cool. Great review Tessa!

  3. This sounds great! A little reminder of the Everworld novels but with a spin. I'll have to check this out! Great review.

  4. Laura (All of Everything)- I know! Haha, weird, huh? We really do tend to like the same books, and there are so many that you have reviewed that I can't wait to read as well. I definitely can't wait for Everwild!

    Kira- Thanks Kira, and I'm glad this one sounds interesting! Everlost really go me thinking about some things that I normally wouldn't have thought about. A very interesting book indeed.

    BookGeek- Thanks! I just checked out the Everworld novels and they sound great! I'm always up for some fantasy, so I can't wait to try them out.


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