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Immortal

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Wyldcliffe Abbey School for Young Ladies, housed in a Gothic mansion on the bleak northern moors, is elite, expensive, and unwelcoming. When Evie Johnson is torn away from her home by the sea to become the newest scholarship student, she is more isolated than she could have dreamed. Strict teachers, snobbish students, and the oppressive atmosphere of Wyldcliffe leave Evie Wyldcliffe Abbey School for Young Ladies, housed in a Gothic mansion on the bleak northern moors, is elite, expensive, and unwelcoming. When Evie Johnson is torn away from her home by the sea to become the newest scholarship student, she is more isolated than she could have dreamed. Strict teachers, snobbish students, and the oppressive atmosphere of Wyldcliffe leave Evie drowning in loneliness. Evie’s only lifeline is Sebastian, a rebellious, mocking, dangerously attractive young man she meets by chance. As Evie’s feelings for Sebastian grow with each secret meeting, she starts to fear that he is hiding something about his past. And she is haunted by glimpses of a strange, ghostly girl—a girl who is so eerily like Evie, she could be a sister. Evie is slowly drawn into a tangled web of past and present that she cannot control. And as the extraordinary, elemental forces of Wyldcliffe rise up like the mighty sea, Evie is faced with an astounding truth about Sebastian, and her own incredible fate. Gillian Shields’s electrifying tale will dazzle readers with suspense, mysticism, and romance.


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Wyldcliffe Abbey School for Young Ladies, housed in a Gothic mansion on the bleak northern moors, is elite, expensive, and unwelcoming. When Evie Johnson is torn away from her home by the sea to become the newest scholarship student, she is more isolated than she could have dreamed. Strict teachers, snobbish students, and the oppressive atmosphere of Wyldcliffe leave Evie Wyldcliffe Abbey School for Young Ladies, housed in a Gothic mansion on the bleak northern moors, is elite, expensive, and unwelcoming. When Evie Johnson is torn away from her home by the sea to become the newest scholarship student, she is more isolated than she could have dreamed. Strict teachers, snobbish students, and the oppressive atmosphere of Wyldcliffe leave Evie drowning in loneliness. Evie’s only lifeline is Sebastian, a rebellious, mocking, dangerously attractive young man she meets by chance. As Evie’s feelings for Sebastian grow with each secret meeting, she starts to fear that he is hiding something about his past. And she is haunted by glimpses of a strange, ghostly girl—a girl who is so eerily like Evie, she could be a sister. Evie is slowly drawn into a tangled web of past and present that she cannot control. And as the extraordinary, elemental forces of Wyldcliffe rise up like the mighty sea, Evie is faced with an astounding truth about Sebastian, and her own incredible fate. Gillian Shields’s electrifying tale will dazzle readers with suspense, mysticism, and romance.

30 review for Immortal

  1. 5 out of 5

    Bonnie

    Evie: Oh no, I have to go to this stupid boarding school since my grandmother is sick, my dad’s in the army and my mom is dead! Stupid boarding school! Me: Well, that’s pretty sad about your family and all, but at least you get a good education for free, you know? Evie: And the stupid cabman wouldn’t even drive me! He just used weird words like “yonder” and muttered dark, cryptic things about the boarding school! Me: That’s pretty weird. This is a tiny village, right? I have to just assume this, be Evie: Oh no, I have to go to this stupid boarding school since my grandmother is sick, my dad’s in the army and my mom is dead! Stupid boarding school! Me: Well, that’s pretty sad about your family and all, but at least you get a good education for free, you know? Evie: And the stupid cabman wouldn’t even drive me! He just used weird words like “yonder” and muttered dark, cryptic things about the boarding school! Me: That’s pretty weird. This is a tiny village, right? I have to just assume this, because you barely leave the school grounds and never really meet townspeople again. But anyway, how many places does this cabman have to drive to? You’d think most of his business would involve ferrying students to and from school. Evie: I didn’t think about the stupid cabman very much because I had to WALK and it was gross and then this boy tried to run me over with his horse. He didn’t even care about ME getting hurt, just about his stupid horse. Me: Jerk! I bet you hate him. Evie: I was SO mad! And then I cried because he broke the frame of my dead mother’s picture. And then he felt bad. And he’s super dreamy. How can you stay mad at someone so hot? Besides he’s, like, so mysterious with his talk about dangers and meeting again and me being from the sea. Me: Yeah, sounds like a real catch. Okay, so what about the boarding school? Evie: Stupid boarding school! With stupid, shallow rich girls and a stupid, mean headmistress. And then just because I’m a SCHOLARSHIP student I have to do stupid chores like Cinderella! Me: Scholarship students doing chores is a pretty strange policy. What’s that all about? Evie: Oh, whatever, it never comes up again. It was just a way to introduce me to Helen Black, this weirdo other scholarship student who everyone else despises. Lady Agnes: Dear Diary, blah blah blah exposition. My beloved best friend S. has returned from his travels! Delightful! Although I talk about everyone else by name, I only refer to him by his initial. I do so love being mysterious! Also, my mother will likely try to marry me off to some bore with a title. I shall do no such thing! I shall only marry for love, regardless of wealth or rank! And I hate corsets! And women should get to vote! And have whichever job they choose! And be paid equally with men! I-I’m sorry. Sometimes I do get carried away with anachronistic thoughts! Ta! Me: What was that? Evie; What was what? Me: Didn’t you—never mind. Okay, go on. You’re at the stupid boarding school with a bunch of stupid people. Evie: Yes. And this girl Celeste is rich and popular and she HATES me. And she and her cronies threw my clothes on the floor and put black silk and rose petals on my bed and surrounded it with funeral candles! Me: *snicker* Evie: IT’S NOT FUNNY!! Me: Yes it is! Where did they get rose petals? And black silk? And funeral candles? That’s a lot of effort for such a lame prank. Evie: IT WAS TRAMAUTIZING! Me: I’m sure it was. So, why did they do this? Evie: Because this girl Laura who was, like, Celeste’s bestie, drowned in the lake. And they said I took her bed. I was sleeping in a dead girl’s bed. I mean, eww! Me: I hope they at least changed the sheets. Evie: Eww. Anyway, then I kept seeing this ghost girl who looks like me. Well, she has red hair like me. And she wears funny clothes! And rooms suddenly have strange people and look different and I keep fainting. It’s weird. Me: That is strange. So what do you do about it? Evie: Do? Me: Yeah. Do you talk to anybody about it? Do some research? Anything? Evie: I don’t understand. Me: Of course you don’t, sweetie. Okay, what’s next? Evie: Well, then I talked to Sarah. She likes animals. She told me about Lady Agnes and how she lived here and then she DIED and it became a school. And Sarah’s, like, a gypsy! Her great-grandmother was a Roma adopted by this English couple and she was sent to this school which has always been the most exclusive school in England and they didn’t want to accept a gypsy. But her parents donated a lot of money and so she got in. Me: Wait, wait. Didn’t Lady Agnes die in 1884? And Evie’s great-grandmother probably went to school in about 1900? So the school was AT MOST about 15 years old? How was it already “always” the most exclusive school in England? Evie: I don’t know. Stop asking me questions. Lady Agnes: Dear Diary, my dearest friend S. found a mysterious book in the Orient. It is called The Mysticke Way. No, diary, I do not know why it has such a silly name. Apparently the vendor just gave him this book! He asked for no money at all! How silly foreigners are! The book makes me quite nervous, but S. is very intent on using it. I’m sure it will just be a little game. Spiritualism is all the rage nowadays, but I shall make no mention of actual historical people or events or ideas in this diary. Me: Seriously, why does this story keep getting interrupted by these useless diary entries? Evie: Stop talking about things that aren’t me. All the teachers are so mean. They won’t even let me wear my grandmother’s very super special necklace. Did I mention my grandmother gave me a necklace? And I always wear it? And it’s my grandmother’s? I hid it under my shirt so the teachers certainly can’t see it. Also, I keep getting demerits. I HATE this school. Me: Yeah, them’s the breaks, kiddo. Lady Agnes: Dear Diary, I used the book with S. It is in somewhat oldish language, but mostly it is regular spelling with “e”s added to the ends of words. Rather queer. S. and I did a ritual and I was touched by the Secret Fire. I feel so powerful! S. was quite put out that I gained power that he did not. Evie: Well, I suddenly really wanted to go swimming. So I decided to sneak out at night and go swimming in the lake. Me: Wait, wait, wait. You wanted to go swimming in the lake? Alone? At night? Without telling anyone what you were doing? Evie: Yes. Me: Didn’t your mother drown?!?!? Evie: Yes. Me: Didn’t that girl Laura drown in the lake?!?!? Evie: Yes. Me: Do you have a death wish? Why would you do something so incredibly stupid? Do you have no sense of self-preservation? Evie: I don’t understand what you’re talking about. I like swimming. Me: Shoot me now. Please. Evie: I’m really glad I decided to sneak down to the lake because there I ran into the dreamy boy who tried to kill me with his horse and was really rude to me earlier. Me: What, he was just lurking by the lake hoping you’d go for a suicidal swim that night? Evie: IT WAS ROMANTIC. He said he just knew that I’d be there because he’s, like, my soulmate. And he said that he wanted to know everything about me and that he had been waiting for me his whole life. His name is Sebastian. What a dreamy name. Me: So you seem to like him. I can’t understand why. Evie: I told you. He’s dreamy. And we, just, like, connect. Plus, he’s super smart. He’s going to Oxford. And he’s really deep. He doesn’t want to just drink and show off like all the other boys at Oxford. He wants to know about immortal truths. Isn’t that, like, dreamy? Me: Okay, so he’s smart and deep. So what do you talk about? Why are we here? Why do we die? Why, if there is a God, He lets terrible things happen to innocent people? Evie: BORING. No, we talk about me. About how he loves me and always wants to be with me and how beautiful and wonderful I am and how dark and mysterious he is. Me: This is such a shallow and dull relationship. Evie: SHUT UP!! IT’S WONDERFUL AND ROMANTIC AND EPIC! Lady Agnes: Dear Diary, S. is my dearest friend and I love him so, but sometimes he scares me. He wants more power. The book says a male must have a coven to gain true power. I refuse to be part of S.’s harem! I also keep seeing this strange girl who looks like me. Well, she has red hair like me. I know that she is S.’s true love. Even though I love him as well, I am oddly content with the idea that this queer girl is his destiny. Me: Seriously, WHY do these diary entries keep appearing? What do they add? Evie: What diary entries? Why do you keep muttering strange things? It’s only okay to be cryptic if you’re a hot guy or a random villager. ANWAY back to me, Sebastian and I had a fight. It is SO TRAGIC. Sebastian said we couldn’t be together anymore because it was too dangerous. I bet he was just ashamed to show me to his family! Sure, all we do is hang out at night by the lake and talk about me and mysterious things I don’t think too hard about but OUR LOVE IS EPIC. We are meant to be together forever. Me: Okay, this is just dragging on. So, Sebastian is dreamy or whatever and you love him but he keeps saying he’s too dangerous and refuses to reveal anything important about himself. The girls at school are mean, except for Sarah who is nice and Helen who is weird. The teachers are weird and mean. You go to class but never seem to do homework or learn anything. Get to the good stuff. Evie: The teachers are an evil coven! I KNOW! You totally didn’t see that coming, right? And they serve Sebastian as their Master because he’s going to give them immortality! They’re not worried about the fact that they’re the third generation of this coven and no one’s got any immortality yet. And Sebastian is immortal! Except he isn’t! He is kind of a ghost or something now but will become a demon if he doesn’t get the Talisman. Which is my grandmother’s necklace. Which is a family heirloom. Because Lady Agnes, is my great-great-great grandmother! She put all her power into the necklace to keep it from Sebastian! Because Sebastian is S.! Who saw that coming?!?!? And Sebastian was the one to kill Lady Agnes. But it was an accident! And he feels bad about it now! Me: Wait, WHAT?!? Sebastian killed your ancestor and you don’t even blink?!? He’s a murderer and you don’t even care a little bit? Evie: He’s dreamy and I love him so much! What’s a little thing like murder in the face of a love like ours? Besides, he told me he never wants to hurt me. Though he might in the future when he becomes more of a demon and has to kill me to get the Talisman and become truly immortal. Sigh. Isn’t that the most tragically romantic thing you’ve ever heard? Me: You say tragically romantic. I say miserably stupid. Evie: And the evil coven has been searching for the Talisman. They knew I was related to Lady Agnes, but didn’t question me or try to take my SuperSpecialAwesome necklace ever. Oh, and if you get three demerits they send you to detention but REALLY they steal your life force. Me: Why do they wait for three demerits? Why don’t they hand out demerits more easily so they can get more life force? Why don’t they just steal a little bit of all the students’ life forces? Why didn’t they just try to steal your life force when you arrived because they knew who you were and kept giving you demerits anyway? Evie: *confused* You keep saying things I just DON’T understand. Me: You know what? This is dumb. This is beyond dumb. And I just don’t care anymore. Go off and pine for your murderous demon boyfriend and fail to do anything useful ever and stop talking to me. I’m done with you.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Everyday QRay (Mama QRay)

    Okay. I admit that I liked this one. If you haven't noticed I am a sucker for the story of the somewhat lonley, misunderstood female lead who falls in love with the guy who is not quite what he first seems to be. HOWEVER, I will tell you that I liked this story much much more when it was called A Great and Terrible Beauty and was written by Libba Bray.

  3. 3 out of 5

    Kat Hooper

    ORIGINALLY POSTED AT Fantasy Literature. Evie Johnson is a new student at Wyldcliffe Abbey School for Young Ladies, which resides in (you’ll never guess) a gothic mansion on the moors. Surprisingly, there are some severe headmistresses there (coiffed with scraped-back buns) and a clique of mean rich girls. They tease Evie for arriving on the train and make discourteous comments when the school mistress announces that Evie is their new “scholarship student.” You won’t believe it, but Evie has red h ORIGINALLY POSTED AT Fantasy Literature. Evie Johnson is a new student at Wyldcliffe Abbey School for Young Ladies, which resides in (you’ll never guess) a gothic mansion on the moors. Surprisingly, there are some severe headmistresses there (coiffed with scraped-back buns) and a clique of mean rich girls. They tease Evie for arriving on the train and make discourteous comments when the school mistress announces that Evie is their new “scholarship student.” You won’t believe it, but Evie has red hair and a seemingly innocuous silver pendant which belonged to her mother (who was drowned), grandmother, and other maternal ancestors who have some connection to the area around Wyldcliffe Abbey. Needless to say, I was astonished when Evie started experiencing strange sensations and hallucinations when she arrived at school. These visions are connected to the tragic deaths of two young ladies, one of whom grew up in the Victorian age and wisely kept a diary detailing her experimentation with witchcraft. In an unpredictable twist, there’s also a mysterious and exotically beautiful boy with no personality who sneaks around on the grounds at night and has fallen hopelessly in love with Evie for no apparent reason. With the help of Sarah, the only nice girl at Wyldcliffe Abbey, and Helen, the strange loner, Evie tries to figure out what’s going on. Immortal, by Gillian Shields, is a disappointing Wuthering Heights wannabe whose plot so closely mimics Libba Bray’s A Great and Terrible Beauty, that it begs comparison. And so I will compare it. I didn’t particularly enjoy Bray’s book because of the unlikable girls, but I did find some pleasure and wit between its covers and the audio narration was truly beautiful. Immortal, however, has nothing going for it. Evie is an ineffective heroine. We’re supposed to root for her because she’s the protagonist of the story, but she’s not particularly engaging or interesting. The only reason to root for Evie is that Celeste (the “ice princess” who’s the classic mean girl caricature) is against her. Likewise, the beautiful boy who falls in love with Evie has nothing to offer. He’s supposed to be tragic and romantic, but I found him annoying and wondered when Evie would ask herself what was wrong with this ridiculous romance. The only tolerable person in Immortal is Sarah, the nice girl. Unfortunately, though the audio version performed by Emily Durante was otherwise well acted, the voice used for Sarah was so highly pitched (sometimes becoming sharp and shrill) that it made even Sarah intolerable. So, there’s no reason to like any of Shields’ characters, and there’s no charm, wit, beauty, or style to make up for it. Immortal isn’t likely to entertain most adults and most well-read teenagers will also find it derivative, emotionally vapid, and generally unsatisfying. Other than disappointment, while reading Immortal I never felt anything but déjà vu.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Briar's Reviews

    Immortal by Gillian Shields is a fantasy YA novel focused on witches. I really enjoyed the first book in this series (aka this book, Immortal). The take it has on witches was different than what I had read about before, and I enjoyed it's uniqueness. It wasn't on my top list of YA books I read years ago, but it's still a good book. Gillian Shields is a skilled writer, and I really want to pick up more books from her. This novel isn't an A+ book, but I can only imagine how much she has grown since Immortal by Gillian Shields is a fantasy YA novel focused on witches. I really enjoyed the first book in this series (aka this book, Immortal). The take it has on witches was different than what I had read about before, and I enjoyed it's uniqueness. It wasn't on my top list of YA books I read years ago, but it's still a good book. Gillian Shields is a skilled writer, and I really want to pick up more books from her. This novel isn't an A+ book, but I can only imagine how much she has grown since she first wrote this book. With so much potential, it's hard to believe she won't write an even better book in the future. I did think there was a pinch too much romance in this book. If there was more focus on the plot line and witches I think it could have peaked up to an even higher rating on my end. I'll have to pick up the rest of the books in the series again to see if it gets any better or if my ratings change from when I first read this series. It also features some cliche characters and plot lines... So, for me, it's a little bit boring. It's still a sweet book, and I think there's lots of room to grow for Gillian. Hopefully she has more books out because I absolutely LOVED her writing style within this. Her books are easy to read and move at a relatively fast paced! Three out of five stars.

  5. 3 out of 5

    Booknut

    This female protagonist needs to watch a few episodes of Pretty Little Liars. Because PLL Rule #1 of Survival is: don't go anywhere creepy at night. Which is right before that other crucial rule: don't trust strange gorgeous guys you've just met. This girl either thinks she's been dipped in the River Styx and is invulnerable, or, is simply missing a few important pieces of her brain. Namely her Fight or Flight instinct!

  6. 4 out of 5

    AH

    Free audio book from audiosync.com this summer. Since I received this as a freebie, I thought I would try an experiment and try out an audio book. I think that this book ran about 7 or 8 hours, but it sure felt longer. The reader wasn't bad, but the story was not for me. Immortal is the story of a young girl named Evie Johnson who is sent to the Wyldcliffe Abbey School for young women. She meets the handsome Sebastian James outside of the school and manages to see him often. Of course, Sebastian i Free audio book from audiosync.com this summer. Since I received this as a freebie, I thought I would try an experiment and try out an audio book. I think that this book ran about 7 or 8 hours, but it sure felt longer. The reader wasn't bad, but the story was not for me. Immortal is the story of a young girl named Evie Johnson who is sent to the Wyldcliffe Abbey School for young women. She meets the handsome Sebastian James outside of the school and manages to see him often. Of course, Sebastian is not really that good for her and there are glaring signs that perhaps Sebastian is not what he seems. Evie ignores all the signs for love. There is something odd about the school as well, not to mention the gaggle of catty girls that have decided to torment Evie. So - boarding school, catty girls, mysterious boy, other strange things, a mystery journal - It could have been interesting, but the story fell flat for me. Perhaps it was Evie's total lack of self preservation that bothered me the most. If your boyfriend tells you that you can't see him in the daytime, he won't introduce you to his family, and that he might hurt you, wouldn't you run in the opposite direction? I know I would.

  7. 3 out of 5

    Kaitlyn

    This is one of those paranormal books that has every cliche you can think of. I really wanted to like this, but honestly, I couldn't think of anything I enjoyed. It's all just so unoriginal. - Girl who's lost one or both of her parents? - Girl gets shipped off to boarding school? - The teachers are mean and have lots of strict rules? - Girl is lonely and gets picked on by popular girls? - Immortal boyfriend who is sad and mysterious? - Girl falls in love with said boyfriend in a tiny span of time and This is one of those paranormal books that has every cliche you can think of. I really wanted to like this, but honestly, I couldn't think of anything I enjoyed. It's all just so unoriginal. - Girl who's lost one or both of her parents? - Girl gets shipped off to boarding school? - The teachers are mean and have lots of strict rules? - Girl is lonely and gets picked on by popular girls? - Immortal boyfriend who is sad and mysterious? - Girl falls in love with said boyfriend in a tiny span of time and declares she'll do anything for him? These are just a few of the cliches in Immortal, and it got on my nerves to no end. Plus, the romance was unbelievable. It seemed like we hardly knew anything about Sebastian, and in the few scenes that he was in, he did nothing but drone on about how he cared so much for Evie, but he couldn't tell her his secrets. (Because, of course, he must have some way to retain his mysteriousness! Even though I totally guessed his "secret" right away.) Then Evie, who is quite possibly one of the most boring narrators I've ever read. She has no personality whatsoever. All I know about her is that she has red hair and gray eyes and she repeatedly calls herself "sane and sensible." Seriously. That's all. It would've helped so much if we knew more about her - what subjects does she like? What does she do in her free time? What are her greatest fears? Her goal in life? Anything?! Doesn't she ever do anything but pine after Sebastian and mope about how she hates boarding school? If you've read many paranormal books, then I wouldn't recommend this, as sadly it's quite boring and unoriginal. I'm definitely not interested enough to continue the series.

  8. 3 out of 5

    Shannon (Giraffe Days)

    Evie Johnson is a sensible, responsible girl not much given over to fancy, but there's no denying her world is becoming increasingly strange - and she seems to be in the thick of it. Sent to the village of Wyldcliffe in Yorkshire to attend a boarding school her military father has found for her after her grandmother suffers a stroke, Evie's determined to make the best of things. But on arriving in Wyldcliffe, Evie literally runs into a handsome, ill-looking young man on a horse who somehow manag Evie Johnson is a sensible, responsible girl not much given over to fancy, but there's no denying her world is becoming increasingly strange - and she seems to be in the thick of it. Sent to the village of Wyldcliffe in Yorkshire to attend a boarding school her military father has found for her after her grandmother suffers a stroke, Evie's determined to make the best of things. But on arriving in Wyldcliffe, Evie literally runs into a handsome, ill-looking young man on a horse who somehow managed to repair the broken glass in her picture frame as if it had never been damaged. And it's not enough that the Wyldcliffe Abbey School for Young Ladies is a large, brooding building run along very traditional ideas of schooling; it's also a school for the precious daughters of some of the wealthiest people in the country, and a cursed place according to the people thereabouts. Which Evie can believe: she evens sleeps in the bed of a girl who drowned in the lake the previous year. On her first day Evie finds herself in trouble with the school's head mistress and her many rules. As an unwanted scholarship student, with nowhere else to go, Evie tries to keep her head down and even make a friend amongst the disdainful, elitist student body. But at night she goes in secret to the lake to meet the man who so caught her attention on her first day: Sebastian, while by day she keeps seeing what may be a ghost, or may be a figment of her imagination - a girl with red hair like hers, in period dress, moving about the Abbey. Evie isn't going crazy. She's connected to Lady Agnes, whose home the Abbey once was in the 19th century, and who seems to be trying to tell Evie to stay away from Sebastian. Sebastian himself, as close as they become, continues to be a mystery to Evie. But as she draws closer to the secret of Lady Agnes, the past and just who - or what - Sebastian really is, she will have to choose between the legacy of a long line of women, and her love for a man who could very well be her dearest enemy. Ultimately, this was a largely unsatisfying novel. With these books I very much get a lolly that fills the mouth with sweetness and rich flavour, pleases the taste buds, but leaves the body unnourished, the belly empty. I'm starting to think that the entire YA industry needs an overhaul, and I would like to see YA authors going back and reading some of the older YA books, from twenty, thirty, eighty years ago, and reflect on why their own work is so ... superficial. So lacking. Even the 90s was producing more satisfying YA work than the new releases I've been reading. Though, there are some good stuff coming out of current writers - just not so much in the paranormal section. And it's a real shame. Shields writes very competently, and employs none of the irritating little narrative devices that give me the shits, like constant reflection and anti-climactic sentences operating as paragraphs, though she does introduce some of her own. The dual stories - of Evie in the present and Agnes, through diary entries, in the past - are woven together neatly, revealing new information to us that corresponds with what's happening in the other story, but leaving the dual protagonists ignorant. Shields would end one such chapter with a line that is then repeated, more or less, at the beginning of the next chapter - once you notice this device, it becomes a bit too pat, a bit too "ha ha yes that's cute moving on now." I did like Lady Agnes, though - she's one of those good characters who can make me feel slightly nauseous, and yet Shields managed to make her convincing enough that I cared for her and her own predicament. The atmosphere was rich, very gothic and quite heavy - the old-fashioned boarding school side of it reminded me of A Picnic at Hanging Rock, sort of. I liked Evie - she's level-headed, not too stubborn, well, not until the end when she held on to her stubbornness a bit too long, and is ordinary and daggy enough to be a familiar, comforting protagonist. If she had been anything like the other girls in the school, it would have been alienating. She was definitely out-of-place in the school, and made the whole situation at the school look rather absurd. In fact, if I follow through with that thought, the school was rather unbelievable, unrealistic - plausible, yes, but also over-the-top. It's not quite like the weirdness at the school in Isobelle Carmody's The Gathering, where the supernatural, magic side of things feels so organic and natural and the dark side of the story just right - by withholding details, the threat and looming danger becomes more tangible. Really, we're told too much here, and the mystery, the suspense, the threat of danger, dissolves. There's too much detail here on things that reduce the novel, diminish it somehow, while those aspects that should have been dwelled on more - specially the relationship between Evie and Sebastian, but also the elemental magic side of things - where skimmed over too lightly. Evie and Sebastian are the case in point: I didn't believe in their chemistry, as much as I wanted to, because there wasn't anything there for me to grasp hold of. Their growing relationship is dealt with almost in passing. What did Sebastian see in Evie beyond red hair that maybe reminded him of Agnes? What did Evie see in Sebastian beyond a pretty face? Without establishing a deep and lasting bond between the two, the whole point of the story falls apart, or at most wallows sluggishly in still water. Predictable water, too - we've figured out everything so far in advance of Evie that you're not left with all that much to keep you reading. I needed the momentum of their passion to propel the story forward, and to really bring to life Evie's unenviable position at the end of the book. Instead, it slipped dangerously close to farce. It was also very fast-paced, rushing through the weeks and yet not really going anywhere. Again, it needed to slow down and really develop the characters and the story more fully. There were definitely elements that I liked, almost despite myself. The beginning, with Evie walking along the village road and the man on the horse coming straight for her, causing a bit of an accident after which the man berates her like it was her fault, is straight out of Jane Eyre , and made me very curious and expectant about seeing more Jane parallels. There weren't any, or I stopped looking. There's a very nice British flavour to the novel that I really appreciated, despite the American spelling that looked so out-of-place, but if often felt like it was written by someone who hadn't spent much time there: a lot of the Britishness you would expect had been smoothed out of it, making it more bland and conventional. (I hate this nagging conviction that non-American authors feel they have to do this to make their books more palatable to Americans - I know, I'm cynical, but I feel it in my gut). I honestly don't know if I'll read more of the series. I was pleased and yet deeply disappointed by this book - pleased by what it did offer, disappointed by how much it held back. My biggest complaint is about the poorly established love between Evie and Sebastian, and since the whole book - the whole series - hinges on this love, you definitely need to have it cemented so well I, the reader, feel every shard of pain Evie does, every moment of despair, passion, loneliness, and aching love. Don't tell me she loves Sebastian. They're just words. I have to see it, feel it, know it for myself. And I hate repeating the same old complaint with every YA Paranormal Romance book I read.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Briana

    Immortal was a compelling and exciting story that kept me turning the pages until I had reached the end. Though I found some parts to be predictable, there were also times when I didn’t have a clue as to how certain elements were connected, which made for an engaging read. I thoroughly enjoyed the characters. I felt they were well developed, realistic, and interesting. However, I must admit that when I heard Sebastian tell Evie to stay from him because he was dangerous I thought, “Oh no, please Immortal was a compelling and exciting story that kept me turning the pages until I had reached the end. Though I found some parts to be predictable, there were also times when I didn’t have a clue as to how certain elements were connected, which made for an engaging read. I thoroughly enjoyed the characters. I felt they were well developed, realistic, and interesting. However, I must admit that when I heard Sebastian tell Evie to stay from him because he was dangerous I thought, “Oh no, please not another ‘“Keep away, I’m dangerous!”’ male love interest.” I believe you all know which book I’m referring to. Thankfully it didn’t turn out to be quite like that and Sebastian had plenty of good reason to warn her. One of the only problems I had with this book was the writing style. Not that there was actually anything wrong with it. It’s just that it read a little differently and took some getting used to, which I eventually did. Although, I did really enjoy the alternating points of view from Evie to Lady Agnes’s journal. For the entire review visit my blog: http://thebookpixie.blogspot.com/2009...

  10. 4 out of 5

    Jessica

    It took me a while to actually get into the book. It has a really good, new, interesting plot. It just never really caught my attention like some other books I've read have. It also kinda bugged me how quickly Evie and Sebastian 'fell in love'. To me it was all to fast. Maybe it was just because we don't get to see all the time they spend together. We just get to see some of the times they meet together. But, even through all that, as all the mysteries strengthen, the book get's a lot more excit It took me a while to actually get into the book. It has a really good, new, interesting plot. It just never really caught my attention like some other books I've read have. It also kinda bugged me how quickly Evie and Sebastian 'fell in love'. To me it was all to fast. Maybe it was just because we don't get to see all the time they spend together. We just get to see some of the times they meet together. But, even through all that, as all the mysteries strengthen, the book get's a lot more exciting. Especially the ending! You start getting all these answers, and one of the answers you get was so obvious that I felt so stupid for not figuring it out to start with. You also start to believe Evie's and Sebastian's relationship a little more, which made it even better. When I first started the book I wasn't sure if I was going to continue on with the series, but after the ending...I have no doubt I will continue with this series. I have got to find out what all is going to happen!

  11. 3 out of 5

    Laura

    I'm sure I've read this before... but perhaps it only feels like it. Evie is a part-orphan (no mother, father never home) raised by her grandmother; when Frankie becomes to ill to care for Evie, her father sends her to Wyldcliffe Abbey School. It's clear from the very start that there's something Not Quite Right about the school, about Sebastian (the boy she meets as she arrives) and about who Evie really is. No spoilers, but if you don't get the main plot twists well before they're revealed, yo I'm sure I've read this before... but perhaps it only feels like it. Evie is a part-orphan (no mother, father never home) raised by her grandmother; when Frankie becomes to ill to care for Evie, her father sends her to Wyldcliffe Abbey School. It's clear from the very start that there's something Not Quite Right about the school, about Sebastian (the boy she meets as she arrives) and about who Evie really is. No spoilers, but if you don't get the main plot twists well before they're revealed, you're just not reading the right kind of books.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Misha Mathew

    I am not sure what I feel about this book. There is a kind of mixed reaction . I bought it because - 1. I had heard about it 2. I liked the cover 3. Main Reason - Melissa Marr's review on the cover describing the book as an "enticing paranormal romance." Not only do I love Melissa Marr but also the gothic genre So ofcourse I had to read the book despite the warning on the cover itself- the tagline - "First Love Never Dies..." Now I am not a big fan of books which have romance as the main plot. I can I am not sure what I feel about this book. There is a kind of mixed reaction . I bought it because - 1. I had heard about it 2. I liked the cover 3. Main Reason - Melissa Marr's review on the cover describing the book as an "enticing paranormal romance." Not only do I love Melissa Marr but also the gothic genre So ofcourse I had to read the book despite the warning on the cover itself- the tagline - "First Love Never Dies..." Now I am not a big fan of books which have romance as the main plot. I can stand it as a part of the story especially if its well done . But no cheesy romances for me , please! Yes, I am a cynic! Yet I did like this book..somewhat. There were both good and bad things about Immortal. Sixteen year old Evie Johnson is forced to attend an elite all girls' school called Wyldcliffe Abbey School because her mother's dead , her father's in army and her grandmother is hospitalized. The school not only has a bad reputation with its secrets and tragic past but the students are rich snobbish brats too.One of them, Celeste takes it upon herself to torment Evie , who as a consequence is sad and lonely. She starts having strange dreams and keeps on seeing things. She finds solace in a mysterious young boy called Sebastian. Sebastian has dark secrets of his own which he wants to protect Evie from. Evie sets out on a journey to discover the secrets that lie in the school's past and hence, discovers her true destiny. I will start with the good things. The writing was great. The descriptions were beautiful. The concept was unique - it didn't follow the same stale storyline of very other YA fantasy. The emotions described in the book can be felt by the readers too - love, loss, grief, pain , fear, anger...... the author describes them beautifully. The storyline is divided into past and present. I really liked the part with past. It was very well-written and believable. So what went wrong? Immortal could have been an intriguing book. The basic premise of the book was different and interesting but failed in its actual execution. First of all there was too much emphasis on the love story and sometimes it seemed that the author forgot about the actual plot in order to focus more on the romance. As for the romance..it was bordering on cheesiness! Some of the dialogues were so clichéd and cheesy that I couldn't help but laugh. The story was very very predictable..so much so that I had guessed the ending in the first few chapters.The author failed to create a suspense element . At first the story moved very slowly because of all the romance but the part which was actually the main plot of the book was very rushed. Lastly, Sebastian was a very clichéd character. I am tired of the same characteristics that every guy in YA fantasy seems to have - Dark hair - Check! Brooding- Check! Dark past - Check! Mysterious and Sexy - Check! Still, Immortal can be read atleast once just for the great writing. However I had expected much more.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Arya

    Evie Johnson is on her own. With her grandmother in the nursing home and her father in the army, a scholarship to one of the oldest and most elite boarding school in the country comes as more than a welcomed relief to her father. But Evie isn't so sure. From the moment she starts her journey to Wyldcliffe Abbey School, she knows something isn't right. Darkness and danger hover over the entire school like a dark cloud, but the Abbey isn't the only thing shrouded in mystery. There is also Sebastia Evie Johnson is on her own. With her grandmother in the nursing home and her father in the army, a scholarship to one of the oldest and most elite boarding school in the country comes as more than a welcomed relief to her father. But Evie isn't so sure. From the moment she starts her journey to Wyldcliffe Abbey School, she knows something isn't right. Darkness and danger hover over the entire school like a dark cloud, but the Abbey isn't the only thing shrouded in mystery. There is also Sebastian a beautiful and strange young man, and the only thing keeping Evie's head above water. But as things continue to get stranger at the school with its lingering Gothic influences, Evie begins to realize its not just Sebastian she does not understand, it is herself. As ghosts and foreboding tidings seem to seep from the very blood stained walls of the Abbey, Evie realizes she's in a fight for her life. One where she can trust no one and nothing, until this horrible evil can be at once laid to rest. Can Evie push her emotions for Sebastian away long enough to see behind the curtain to her true self and his? Immortal is a stunning modern Gothic thriller with rock solid characters and a beautifully toned narrator. Gillian Shields's writing was so addictive I could barely put the novel down. The distinction between Evie and Agnes's voices in the book was what really held things together for me and managed to separate the modern from the Gothic while melding them together at the same time. With two characters so alike it takes a great deal of talent to make them both stand on their on as well as Gillian Shields was able to. I'm thankful that she didn't make Sebastian into the cookie cutter type of guy many novels of this type seem to dish out. He was complicated and unpredictable until the very end, and I like that. There's nothing worse than being able to predict the outcome of the story. It may make you feel smart for a while, but it is very unsatisfying. Overall, the plot and tone of Immortal is gorgeous and powerful, full of all the right undertones and highlights a book of this genre needs. Its a novel that fits in perfectly with the popular books of today but also goes far beyond that in the sense of timelessness that it brings. Anyone with a thirst for a good fantasy will love this. It may not be the ideal light summer read, but for those of you like me who enjoy your books heavy and intense, you will love this one. For fans of: The Evil Within by Nancy Holder Review by Arya @ A Sea of Pages http://seaofpages.blogspot.com <--- Check it out!!

  14. 5 out of 5

    Lindsey

    I have to be honest, this isn’t a book that I enjoyed. I think it was trying to be too many different things at the same time. Is it a love story? Is it a mystery? Is it a fantasy story riddled with mysticism and evil covens that need to be destroyed? None of the themes are explored and the plot rushes through what should be longer, more processed elements of the story. The love element has no conviction, and the fantasy seems almost like an afterthought. This really should have been two differe I have to be honest, this isn’t a book that I enjoyed. I think it was trying to be too many different things at the same time. Is it a love story? Is it a mystery? Is it a fantasy story riddled with mysticism and evil covens that need to be destroyed? None of the themes are explored and the plot rushes through what should be longer, more processed elements of the story. The love element has no conviction, and the fantasy seems almost like an afterthought. This really should have been two different books. One where Evie discovers a strong kindred with this girl in the past while falling in love with this dangerous stranger, and another where Evie’s powers are awakened and she joins a coven of girls with magical elemental powers and they fight the evil coven. Either that or it should have been longer in order to flush out the story. Also, a quick word of clarification, the novel advertises itself as dealing with mysticism, but it’s very clear that this is Wiccan, and not the love the forest and the trees sort. This is the coven of witches who kidnap girls and murder them to keep their coven master alive sort. Simply put, the ‘magic’ isn’t fun like many fantasy books. This is secret society of evil people sort of magic based much more in literal beliefs than what one would find in Harry Potter or Twilight. -Lindsey Miller, www.lindseyslibrary.com

  15. 3 out of 5

    Ashlynn

    i chosse this book because it seemed like I would understand it more then the other books that i have read so far. the genre of the book is paranormal romance. it takes place in England. the main main charater Evie is a girl that dose not like to change what she is use to she trys to fit in at wyldcliffe bording school for girls butthen she relizes thatshe fits in just in a diffrent way. Evie meets a guy and she vows that she willl probley never see him again and that every thing eles at the abb i chosse this book because it seemed like I would understand it more then the other books that i have read so far. the genre of the book is paranormal romance. it takes place in England. the main main charater Evie is a girl that dose not like to change what she is use to she trys to fit in at wyldcliffe bording school for girls butthen she relizes thatshe fits in just in a diffrent way. Evie meets a guy and she vows that she willl probley never see him again and that every thing eles at the abbey is just a dream. that she has to connect with her anseter Lady Agnes Temleton to see what she is destend for and ow to save the abbey. they problem is sloved when Evie starts to belive that she is agnes anstser and that she has the pwer agnes did. my opoinion of t he book is that it was very diffrent then the books i usealy read but i liked i it was something new and i will read it again some time in the future.

  16. 3 out of 5

    jesse

    Hm ... where to begin? Story started okay (for me), but got worse page after page. While I did like the environment in which it takes place: moors - which ultimately helps getting the reader in the mood the author intended, those darn letters got in the way ... and this whole thing about this so-called witchcraft which dragged down the whole story if it didn't already before. BAD STORY - BORING, FLAT CHARACTERS. - Spend your money on a book that's worth it!

  17. 3 out of 5

    Jessica (Goldenfurpro)

    The Run-Down Evie Johnson's Grandmother is sick. And with no other options, Evie gets to become the new scholarship girl at Wyldcliffe Abbey School for Young Ladies. Turns out that she's filling in the spot for a girl that recently died, there's a mysterious boy, and she keeps seeing a girl that looks very much like her! What is the secret at Wyldcliffe? *dramatic music* My Thoughts This book reminded me much greatly of A Great and Terrible Beauty. They both involve boarding schools. They both involv The Run-Down Evie Johnson's Grandmother is sick. And with no other options, Evie gets to become the new scholarship girl at Wyldcliffe Abbey School for Young Ladies. Turns out that she's filling in the spot for a girl that recently died, there's a mysterious boy, and she keeps seeing a girl that looks very much like her! What is the secret at Wyldcliffe? *dramatic music* My Thoughts This book reminded me much greatly of A Great and Terrible Beauty. They both involve boarding schools. They both involve magic. And they both involve girls messing with magic. I wasn't a big fan of A Great and Terrible Beauty. I gave the book 3 stars (which means that I liked it) but I found the characters unlikable. Same thing with this book. I cannot think of a single character that I remotely liked. Most of them I saw as insane, evil, or complete idiots. Evie falls under the idiotic category. There were many things that Evie did that I didn't quite understand why she did them. In all honesty, I can't really elaborate without giving away spoilers. But... I do consider The Romance idiotic. So a mysterious boy almost runs you over with a horse, and of course she falls in love with him! Yeah... The Romance was a major problem for me. Mysterious guy won't tell Evie anything about him, yet she will risk herself to be with him? And where was the romance? What Evie and "Mysterious guy" had was not romance. Its one of those relationships that makes you think "what do they see in each other?" or "What in the world is going on here?" Lastly, some parts of the story seemed extremely obvious. There was a diary entries throughout the book from a girl named Lady Agnes. She called a boy in the diary entries S. (even though she called everyone else by name). Do you know who S. could possibly be? (hopefully you do) There were many more obvious things like this and while some of them were obvious thanks to the diary entries, there were others that Evie should have been able to figure out. In Conclusion I'm not a huge fan of the book. The characters were unlikable, the romance was stupid, and the story was predictable. If you really really liked A Great and Terrible Beauty you might like this book. If not? You might want to stay away from this book. I will mention that even though I didn't like this book very much, I will attempt to continue the series.

  18. 3 out of 5

    Jennifer Wardrip

    Reviewed by Jaglvr for TeensReadToo.com Evie Johnson's life can't possibly get any worse. Her beloved grandmother has taken ill. She has been living with her while her father has been serving in the military. But now, she can't go with her father, her mother is dead, and her grandmother is in a home. So with a little-known scholarship, Evie finds herself sent off to the Wyldcliffe Abbey School for Young Ladies out in the moors. Evie grew up by the sea, and she can't imagine what it will be like s Reviewed by Jaglvr for TeensReadToo.com Evie Johnson's life can't possibly get any worse. Her beloved grandmother has taken ill. She has been living with her while her father has been serving in the military. But now, she can't go with her father, her mother is dead, and her grandmother is in a home. So with a little-known scholarship, Evie finds herself sent off to the Wyldcliffe Abbey School for Young Ladies out in the moors. Evie grew up by the sea, and she can't imagine what it will be like so far removed from the water she loves. She has to take the train to the school, and the cab driver refuses to take her all the way to the school, calling it a cursed place. In the dark cold rain, Evie struggles with her bags through the trees to the school. It's in the trees that she is hit by a dark brooding boy on horseback. She's tired, dirty, and is distraught to find her mother's photo frame broken on the ground. The mysterious boy helps gather her belongings and murmurs he will see her again. When Evie sets her picture frame beside her bed, she's surprised to find that it's in one piece, the glass not broken at all. She begins to believe she imagined the encounter and the strange boy, but then she notices the gash on her hand, from a piece of the previously broken glass. This begins her first night at the school. And things do not get better for Evie. She's taunted by one of her roommates, Celeste. Evie's place at the school is due to the mysterious death of Celeste's best friend. And as part of being a scholarship student, Evie must help crazy Helen Black with some of the chores after dinner. The only bright spot is the friendly gesture by one other girl, Sarah. The mysterious boy returns, and soon Evie finds herself sneaking out after hours to meet Sebastian. He gives little information about what he does during the day, and Evie makes many requests to have him call properly at the school. The more mysterious Sebastian seems, the more intrigued Evie becomes. When Helen starts to watch over Evie and get her in trouble for sneaking out, hints of stories told to Evie by her grandmother start to make more sense. IMMORTAL is an intriguing and dark tale that intertwines the past and the present. With glimpses into the past through a character's diary entries, Evie learns who she is and what she must do to survive and protect those around her. The story captures the reader from the first page and draws them in until the final one. There was so much mystery as well as romance throughout the entire story that it should appeal to a large audience.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Samantha

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. Obviously by my rating you can tell I did not really enjoy this story. So why? Mainly because I didn't like the maturity level of Evie and felt that she never grew into a better person throughout the story. The publisher's website mentions that one of Shields' influences is Wuthering Heights, and this seems like a Wuthering Heights mock-up. Yet while I can see the effort is apparent the result is not the same. I was never able to connect to Evie as a character and I found her to be annoying and t Obviously by my rating you can tell I did not really enjoy this story. So why? Mainly because I didn't like the maturity level of Evie and felt that she never grew into a better person throughout the story. The publisher's website mentions that one of Shields' influences is Wuthering Heights, and this seems like a Wuthering Heights mock-up. Yet while I can see the effort is apparent the result is not the same. I was never able to connect to Evie as a character and I found her to be annoying and trivial most of the time. Maybe the effort was to make her seem "different" from other girls, more fierce and unique, but she actually pouty and petulant instead. This is the kind of attitude I had to deal with the entire story: "...set out the coffee trays for the mistresses after supper, tidy up the hymn books after choir practice, that sort of thing." "I hadn't expected to do chores.....For one crazy second I was tempted to say, Stuff your scholarship, and walk out...." A lot of the time I had to remind myself that this story was set in the present. The descriptions were on the scarce side and the first-person POV felt too much like a stream of consciousness, and not in a good way. And I'm sorry to say that, imo, the "villains" were laughable! They were evil caricatures that made me want to laugh and cringe in embarrassment for this writing. For example, the headmistress is Eveeeel: "Any girl foolish enough to acquire three demerits will be sent to me for punishment, but not for the detention that she suspects."---WTF?!?!?! Watch out ladies! At this school the demerits are DEADLY! Not only is the evil headmistress after poor Evie, the other students are determined to make her life Hell. Celeste is the main baddie and she gets her kicks tormenting Evie because her cousin recently died and she feels like she's taking her place..wow. Not only is the reason, but it's stated point-blank. In fact, every emotion or element of the story is spelled out in repetition ad nauseam. Another thing that turned me off of this story was Sebastian. I could see the Wuthering Heights influence again, but it was too much for me. It seemed like the author tried to glorify/redeem someone that truly didn't deserve it. Maybe she thought she could rewrite that ending so that Heathcliff/Sebastian would be "fixed". Evie and Sebastian's relationship also did not seem believable and I didn't care what happened to either of them. So in the end this one was a disappointment, but see if you agree...

  20. 4 out of 5

    Gunne

    See a pattern in the current books I'm reading? That's right, immortality! Souls! So what do you suppose I did when I came across a book with the word "Immortal" blasted across the cover? I read it! Did I mention that I really dislike books that have romance as their main plot? IMO, there're only so many ideas you can explore in a romance. Unrequited love, puppy love, high-school crushes, love triangles, inter-species romances, etc. It's kinda limited, unoriginal. Which is why I stand by my opinio See a pattern in the current books I'm reading? That's right, immortality! Souls! So what do you suppose I did when I came across a book with the word "Immortal" blasted across the cover? I read it! Did I mention that I really dislike books that have romance as their main plot? IMO, there're only so many ideas you can explore in a romance. Unrequited love, puppy love, high-school crushes, love triangles, inter-species romances, etc. It's kinda limited, unoriginal. Which is why I stand by my opinion that a book has to have a romance as a sub-plot, inspired only by the events and circumstances that happen in the book. A story that is supported by its romance can never go far. (At least, I've yet to come across any.) In this way, Immortal did not impress. Love is a great thing, but when everything you do ends with "because I love him" without intermediate reasons and tangible results, then your character lacks intelligence, purpose, and motivation. I can accept that ultimately, we do things because we love, but I have trouble taking "because I love him" for an answer. Somewhere in between there has to be a reason, say, 'I'm doing this because I want to save his soul from eternal damnation because he's a misunderstood person AND I love him.' Where character motivation should be, Immortal turns to the lazy reason of 'I love him'. Boring. There's another thing I dislike more than romances: ancient romances. Victorian lovers. Some grand story about love transcending time and space. It's all very romantic, but I have a problem stomaching olden day language and expressions of love. Particularly sweet nothings and endearments. In the 21st century, insults are the new endearments. It's why people flirt. I don't think it needs declaring but this book and me? We don't get along in taste.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Sara

    Plot: 4.5 Stars My favorite part of this book was how seamlessly it jumped between the present and the journal entries detailing the past. The journal entries gave the backstory needed to completely understand Sebastian without bogging the reader down with large amounts of dialogue. I also tend to like books that focus on the paranormal in a boarding school setting, and I felt the Wyldcliffe Abbey School was mysterious and creepy in all the right ways. This novel was definitely a fresh take on im Plot: 4.5 Stars My favorite part of this book was how seamlessly it jumped between the present and the journal entries detailing the past. The journal entries gave the backstory needed to completely understand Sebastian without bogging the reader down with large amounts of dialogue. I also tend to like books that focus on the paranormal in a boarding school setting, and I felt the Wyldcliffe Abbey School was mysterious and creepy in all the right ways. This novel was definitely a fresh take on immortality and it's consequences. Pace: 4 Stars The beginning of the novel was a little slow for my tastes. There was a moment when I almost put it down, but it finally snagged me and picked up speed. There were many twists and turns that I wasn't expecting, and although the ending was quick, it didn't feel rushed. Characters: 3.5 Stars Besides Evie and Sebastian, I felt the rest of the characters came up a little short. They weren't really in the spotlight all that much, but I like it when lesser characters have a little more depth. I couldn't even bring myself to hate the mean girls the way I should've because they were kinda flat. While this detracted from some scenes, it didn't affect much of the overall plot because so much of it focused only on Evie and Sebastian. Cover: 4 Stars I love the color blue and I love really simple covers. And I also like that it wasn't a portrait of a teenage girl, like so many YA covers depict. The mystery of the deep blues and the necklace drew me in and made me want to read the book. Overall: 4 Stars Disclosure: I bought this book for my own enjoyment.

  22. 3 out of 5

    Kazen

    This book fell right into my sweet spot - a story that unfolds rather than being set, a mysterious man with a troubled past, a normal world that ends up being full of magic. The story is very good and the plot kept me from putting it down for even a moment. So why only four stars? I'm finding nearly all YA books to lack a measure of depth and this one was no different. Connections were spelled out and characters fit into neat stereotypes (the mean girl, the mean girl's groupie, the one nice girl, This book fell right into my sweet spot - a story that unfolds rather than being set, a mysterious man with a troubled past, a normal world that ends up being full of magic. The story is very good and the plot kept me from putting it down for even a moment. So why only four stars? I'm finding nearly all YA books to lack a measure of depth and this one was no different. Connections were spelled out and characters fit into neat stereotypes (the mean girl, the mean girl's groupie, the one nice girl, the mysterious guy, the mean headmaster...). The only person that defied her initial pigeonholing was Helen, and being the "odd bird" it wasn't too hard. If you like paranormal but are sick of vampires you'll probably like this book. If you like a strong plot and being dragged to and fro by the action you'll definitely like this book. If you'd like something deeper to chew on after the last page has turned this may not be the book for you. Personally, I got carried away by the plot but keenly felt the lack of substance at the core. Four stars.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Eliza

    I would've rated this book a 2.5 but that option is nonexistent. The book only became interesting when you reached the middle. Evie was just a little to naive for my taste and a little bit in denial. I didn't really like Sebastian. He isn't the kind of guy that I like in these teen paranormal romance books. Probably because he wasn't necessarily a teen and he was technically really old fashioned. I kind of hoped he really did die in this book. I didn't really like his name that much mostly becau I would've rated this book a 2.5 but that option is nonexistent. The book only became interesting when you reached the middle. Evie was just a little to naive for my taste and a little bit in denial. I didn't really like Sebastian. He isn't the kind of guy that I like in these teen paranormal romance books. Probably because he wasn't necessarily a teen and he was technically really old fashioned. I kind of hoped he really did die in this book. I didn't really like his name that much mostly because it just brought me back to The Little Mermaid, you know that little red crab with the weird accent. I knew the stable boy Josh had a better chance with Evie than Sebastian. I bet Josh is some kind of descendant of Francis. I did like the idea of the Four Elements. I love when the cover of books include a momento in the book. But I couldn't help but giggle when one of the characters said, "Give me the Talisman, or else you'll die." That was more or less the gist of it. Kind of cliche. But the book was good enough that I want to finish the series.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Ren

    Sampai sekarang hal2 yang masih belum jelas dan aneh: - Tumben Dastan nerbitin YA. - Apa nerbitin YA ini gara2 nama tokohnya Evie sama Sebastian?? (Devil in Winter alert) - Covernya ada kelelawar,padahal bukunya bukan tentang vampir lho :D => EPIC FAIL!! =)) - Kenapa ya aku beli ini? Kebanyakan duit kah? Tergiur diskonnya Dastan pas itu kah? =)) Atau mungkin kaget karena tumben (lagi) Dastan nerbitin buku YA, yang dibilang gothic romance. Biar ga keliatan kalo buku YA kali ya :P Yang pasti, salah Sampai sekarang hal2 yang masih belum jelas dan aneh: - Tumben Dastan nerbitin YA. - Apa nerbitin YA ini gara2 nama tokohnya Evie sama Sebastian?? (Devil in Winter alert) - Covernya ada kelelawar,padahal bukunya bukan tentang vampir lho :D => EPIC FAIL!! =)) - Kenapa ya aku beli ini? Kebanyakan duit kah? Tergiur diskonnya Dastan pas itu kah? =)) Atau mungkin kaget karena tumben (lagi) Dastan nerbitin buku YA, yang dibilang gothic romance. Biar ga keliatan kalo buku YA kali ya :P Yang pasti, salah satu alasan kenapa gw jarang banget baca YA. Benciii banget sama tokoh cewe ababil (Evie) dan cowo berlagak sok misterius (Sebastian). Apa gara2 Twilight ya semua tokoh cewe dan cowonya memper2 si Bella sama Edward? Walaupun kalo aku perhatikan sekarang, udah banyak variasi YA, tokoh2nya sedikit tidak terlalu annoying (syukurlah) Yang menarik dari buku ini mungkin tema hantunya. Jangan dibaca pas malam2, yang jelas bikin merinding disko XD...

  25. 4 out of 5

    Richard Denney

    boring!!! lol seriously. the plot was so generic and flat that the book was really hard to get through. the storyline sounded really good, but then you sit down to read it and it sucks. not much else to say other than I hate when books have a heroine who can't stand up for herself, it bugs me a lot.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Diandra

    She is by my side, as my sister, but he is in my soul. He is my enemy, my tormentor, my demon. He is my beloved. I saw two beloved faces, his and hers, and I vowed to protect them. She will be the one to teach him the secrets of his heart. "I love you, girl from the sea."

  27. 5 out of 5

    Kathy Davie

    First in the Immortal paranormal fantasy series for Young Adult readers and revolving around Evie Johnson, an unexpectedly gifted student. My Take My biggest problem with Immortal is the setting. Shields drops in tells that the school is in England, but my mind kept going to New England as all these girls sound so American! I wish Shields had done a better job of showing that the story was set in England. Use a more British context in the sentences, British words in the language and Evie’s thought First in the Immortal paranormal fantasy series for Young Adult readers and revolving around Evie Johnson, an unexpectedly gifted student. My Take My biggest problem with Immortal is the setting. Shields drops in tells that the school is in England, but my mind kept going to New England as all these girls sound so American! I wish Shields had done a better job of showing that the story was set in England. Use a more British context in the sentences, British words in the language and Evie’s thoughts, and give us a definitive English setting! The theme is power, one which can be used well or badly, and a desire for immortality. I do like Agnes’ approach to it. Evie’s introduction to her fellow students made me think of the scene in The Little Princess (an adaptation of a book by Frances Hodgson Burnett) when the news of her father’s death hits home to Shirley Temple’s character, Sarah. I didn’t care for Evie. Sure, her circumstances are sad, but she’s such a shallow twit, and I suspect her perspective with the first-person protagonist point-of-view may be contributing to it. As for Agnes, yes, she has a good heart, but her “escape” to London was stupid and poorly planned. In fact, the whole story’s execution is lame. It is a dramatic soap opera that gets worse as it goes on. The Story It begins with a book, The Mysticke Way, brought home by the hungry Sebastian in 1882. It was fate, kismet, that brought Evie Johnson to Sebastian, drawing her into a tangled web of past and present that she cannot control. And as the extraordinary, elemental forces of Wyldcliffe rise up like the mighty sea, Evie is faced with an astounding truth about Sebastian, and her own incredible fate. The Characters Evie Johnson is sent as a charity girl to a boarding school. Frances “Frankie” Mary (born 1933) is Evie’s grandmother who stood in as her mom. Dad is a widower posted overseas in the military. Clara had been Evie’s mother and Frankie’s daughter. Frankie’s family had… …once lived at Uppercliffe Farm near Wyldcliffe. Evelyn “Effie” Frances Smith was born in 1884 and was Evie’s great-great-grandmother. Eliza Agnes was Effie’s daughter born in 1904. The very strict Wyldcliffe Abbey School for Young Ladies is… …located in Wyldcliffe (England!). The snotty Celia Hartle is High Mistress. Miss Scratton is in charge of the girls in the senior division. Mrs. Edwards is the housekeeper. Miss Dalrymple teaches geography, and the angry Miss Raglan teaches math. Dr. Harrison is the school doctor. Miss Schofield is the sports mistress. Josh is a stableboy. Mr. Brooke is the music master. Sarah Fitzalan is a kind rich girl with a need to rescue. Bonny and Starlight are her ponies stabled at the school. Helen Black is another scholarship student in Evie’s dorm, Cromwell. Rosie, Jessica Armstrong, Becky, Emily, Elizabeth Fisher, and Katherine Thomas are more fellow students. Celeste leads the group of mean girls that includes Sophie and India. Laura had been Celeste’s cousin who died. Dan Jones runs the store and post office in the village. Melinda Dawson is the director of a local museum. Beechwood is… …a nursing home. Margaret Walsh is one of the nurses. 1882 The sixteen-year-old Lady Agnes Templeton has a thirst for knowledge. Her father is Lord Charles Templeton who rebuilt Wyldcliffe, using stones from the destroyed abbey. Miss Binns is her governess. Martha is Agnes’ old nurse who retired to her nephew John’s farm. Nellie and Mary are maids. S. is the greedy, immature, and envious young Sebastian James — yeah, I don’t care for him, either — who lives at Fairfax Hall. Sir Edward Fairfax is his father. The Reverend A.J. Flowerdew wrote A Short History of Wyldcliffe Abbey School. Daniel Jones was a local carter. Mr. Carley is the overseer in London. Polly is another of the seamstresses. Francis Howard is the consumptive painter Agnes met in London. The Dark Sisters are a coven who feed and protect their master. The Shadow world is where one is neither alive nor dead. The Cover and Title The cover is simple and gorgeous in the swirls created by the graceful Talisman drifting down into the water’s depths in a gradation of royal blues ranging from darkest at the top and lightest at the bottom. The title is to the right and just below center is in an embossed gold while the author’s name is at the bottom in black with a small epigram to the left of the pendant in black. The title is what Sebastian wishes to be, Immortal.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Logan

    For some reason, I don't read very many gothic novels, even though when I do read them I love them. Is it that there aren't many of them written? Are they just not flashy enough to compete with their dystopian brethren? Or do I just not keep them high enough on my radar? This gothic beauty has been languishing on my TBR for a long time, and I'm kicking myself for not getting to it sooner. Immortal had everything going for it - sweeping romance, eerie moors, haunting ghosts. In the first 100 pages For some reason, I don't read very many gothic novels, even though when I do read them I love them. Is it that there aren't many of them written? Are they just not flashy enough to compete with their dystopian brethren? Or do I just not keep them high enough on my radar? This gothic beauty has been languishing on my TBR for a long time, and I'm kicking myself for not getting to it sooner. Immortal had everything going for it - sweeping romance, eerie moors, haunting ghosts. In the first 100 pages, I was enthralled. Evie arrives at Wyldcliffe, only to be nearly run over by a dark, mysterious, and handsome (naturally) boy on a horse. It was a scene ripped from Jane Eyre, that gothic novel to end all gothic novels. I was anticipating the love story to come and finding the secrets hidden in the passageways of the boarding school. Around the midpoint of the book I realized that I needed to adjust my expectations. Evie isn't really haunted so much as she experiences visions. She has odd dreams and keeps seeing a girl who looks like her lurking around the school, but she's never really frightened by any of it. This means, of course, that I was never scared as a reader, either. It took a lot of the fun out of Evie's trips down musty passageways and out onto the moor to meet up with Sebastian. Sebastian, the boy from the horse, runs into her again late one night after Evie has snuck out to get some air. They begin to meet up nightly, and Evie falls in love. I guess. Well, she says she falls in love, but I certainly didn't get swoony over it. This was one romance that just wasn't for me. You see, the book intersperses Evie's story with excerpts from Lady Agnes Templeton's diary from 1882 to 1884. Agnes, the daughter of the owners of Wyldcliffe manor, writes about her friend "S." who introduces her to the Mysticke Way. "S" is kind of a jerk, and as they unlock their mystical powers (witchcraft, though no one in this book wants to call it that), he gets worse. SPOILER ALERT! (I think, though it seemed pretty obvious to me.) (view spoiler)[I mean, clearly, "S" is Sebastian, right? So I'm reading all about this douche from the past who treated Lady Agnes like complete garbage...and then I'm supposed to be happy that Evie is falling for him? Nope. Not going to happen. (hide spoiler)] (Carry on.) The witchcraft bit doesn't really come in to play for Evie's story until late in the book, at which point she has to rush to understand her role in the history of Wyldcliffe much too quickly for my taste. Once Evie finally starts to put together the pieces of the large and obvious clues in front of her, there are only a few chapters left. She has so much to learn and do, which gets rushed into a couple of scenes, only to build to a climax that is resolved so quickly and lacks so much (or any) confrontation that it feels too easy. Instead of wrapping things up with a genuine conflict between Evie and some badass witches in this story, it seems like the author left that for the next in the series. What a letdown! I would have liked to have seen more of Evie developing her own powers and working with her friends. I would have liked to have seen her then use those powers in a manner that actually accomplished something instead of seeming to delay the conflict for a bit. Still, I'm only really complaining because overall I really enjoyed the book. I liked the mystery of Lady Agnes and "S" and how it all tied in with Evie. I loved the setting (boarding school!) and the isolation of this old manor on the moor. I tore through this book - devoured it - to find out what would happen next. It was thoroughly engaging, even if it didn't turn out to be quite the book I wanted it to be.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Camilla

    This was a good read that I sort of enjoyed, I felt that it was lacking certain things that made it disappointing; the characters were okay, the main character, Evie, was likable but a little boring. The whole idea of this book had a lot of potential, the idea of this story is great, but it turned out to be boring at times and a bit predictable. Although, I did like this book because of the cool mystery that ties in with it, and Sebastian's character, to me, made the story interesting and myster This was a good read that I sort of enjoyed, I felt that it was lacking certain things that made it disappointing; the characters were okay, the main character, Evie, was likable but a little boring. The whole idea of this book had a lot of potential, the idea of this story is great, but it turned out to be boring at times and a bit predictable. Although, I did like this book because of the cool mystery that ties in with it, and Sebastian's character, to me, made the story interesting and mysterious. The most captivating parts were when him and Evie were together, but that didn't last that long. The beginning was very slow, and I was second guessing if I should even continue reading, but once Sebastian came into the picture and the mystery started to unravel I started to like it. This was an okay read, that I liked, the mystery was cool and the plot was interesting... Evie Johnson is transferring to Wyldcliffe Abbey School as the newest scholarship student, her dad is fighting in the war, her grandmother Frankie is very ill, and her mother died when she was very young. She is torn away from her home, to this Gothic Mansion where only girls attend; it's bleak, expensive, unwelcoming and a life changing experience for Evie. As she heads to the school, a horse runs into her as she is consumed in her thoughts...she falls, opens her eyes, and sees the rider hunched over her. He is a boy, who looks only a few years older than Evie, yet he looks like he comes from another world. His long dark hair frames his pale face, and his blue eyes are staring down at her. Evie finds him very mysterious, and as he rides away he says that they'll meet again, and Evie has a hard time believing that he could be right..but she hopes that he is. Evie enters Wyldcliffe and is welcomed by strict teachers and even stricter rules. She shares a room with Helen, the strange girl who keeps to herself, Celeste, who's snobby, mean, and does whatever she can to make Evie's life difficult, and her two little minions Sophie and Indie. The only friendly face she meets is Sarah, the down to earth, welcoming girl who spends a lot of time with her horses by the stable. Evie tries to meet friends but everyone is shutting her out. She only feels truly happy when she starts to meet the mysterious boy, Sebastian, by the lake at night, he says that this is the only time that he can meet her. Evie spends more time with him and things start to change...Evie starts to see a girl who oddly looks exactly like herself, Helen starts to warn Evie of Sebastian and the meetings by the lake, secrets of the past are revealed, One thing leads to another and the mystery unravels, people aren't what they seem and Evie learns secrets about the school, her family, and Sebastian... I got this book because the description is very promising. The whole idea of this book was great, but I felt it could have been better. I'm split down the middle with this book. The mystery was very cool, and I don't regret reading it. I think I'll read the sequel when it comes out, to see what happens next in the mystery.

  30. 3 out of 5

    Jill

    I found the premise of the plot very interesting when I picked it up and thought to myself this seems really good from the sound of it. Half way through I got abit annoyed with the decisions that Evie was constantly making I felt were very carelessly made. But I loved the mystery aspect of the book and what it brought to me entertainment wise. So I feel I was generous with the 2 star rating. Evie Johnson is transferring to Wyldcliffe Abbey School as the newest scholarship student, her dad is fig I found the premise of the plot very interesting when I picked it up and thought to myself this seems really good from the sound of it. Half way through I got abit annoyed with the decisions that Evie was constantly making I felt were very carelessly made. But I loved the mystery aspect of the book and what it brought to me entertainment wise. So I feel I was generous with the 2 star rating. Evie Johnson is transferring to Wyldcliffe Abbey School as the newest scholarship student, her dad is fighting in the war, her grandmother Frankie is very ill, and her mother died when she was very young. She is torn away from her home, to this Gothic Mansion where only girls attend; it's bleak, expensive, unwelcoming and a life changing experience for Evie. As she heads to the school, a horse runs into her as she is consumed in her thoughts...she falls, opens her eyes, and sees the rider hunched over her. He is a boy, who looks only a few years older than Evie, yet he looks like he comes from another world. His long dark hair frames his pale face, and his blue eyes are staring down at her. Evie finds him very mysterious, and as he rides away he says that they'll meet again, and Evie has a hard time believing that he could be right..but she hopes that he is. Evie enters Wyldcliffe and is welcomed by strict teachers and even stricter rules. She shares a room with Helen, the strange girl who keeps to herself, Celeste, who's snobby, mean, and does whatever she can to make Evie's life difficult, and her two little minions Sophie and Indie. The only friendly face she meets is Sarah, the down to earth, welcoming girl who spends a lot of time with her horses by the stable. Evie tries to meet friends but everyone is shutting her out. She only feels truly happy when she starts to meet the mysterious boy, Sebastian, by the lake at night, he says that this is the only time that he can meet her. Evie spends more time with him and things start to change...Evie starts to see a girl who oddly looks exactly like herself, Helen starts to warn Evie of Sebastian and the meetings by the lake, secrets of the past are revealed, One thing leads to another and the mystery unravels, people aren't what they seem and Evie learns secrets about the school, her family, and Sebastian... The cover is just gorgeous where the story is just plain ok.

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