Immortal by Gillian Shields
Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
Pub. Date: June 2010
(Hardcover Pub. Date: August 2009)
(Also available in Electronic Format)
Age Group: Young Adult +
Review: IMMORTAL by Gillian Shields hearkens back to the classic Gothic romance novels of Daphne Du Maurier and Victoria Holt.
Readers will be enraptured by the romance between a lonely protagonist and a brooding hero set against the windswept moors of England. IMMORTAL also features supernatural magic, haunting ghosts and a gloomy boarding school.
I tore through IMMORTAL and couldn’t wait to get to the end. Though, as I was reading, I kind of had an inkling to how the story was going to turn out or figured out the different plot twists before they were reveled. But I still kept turning the pages.
As for the characters, I really liked Evie. She’s curious and intelligent, but desperate for a connection to home by the sea which she has unwillingly left behind after her grandmother falls sick and her father (who is in the Army) is called to duty.
When she meets the dark and elusive, Sebastian, on her first night at Wyldecliffe, she ends up gaining more than she bargained for — a ghost that is trying to contact her beyond the grave, nasty mean girls at the school who want to rip her apart with their cruel ways, an evil headmistress who would like to send her home, and her love for Sebastian who will do anything to keep her safe.
The love story is sweet and tender and the supernatural elements fall in to place like puzzle pieces within the mystery surrounding Wyldcliffe Abbey. As I mentioned above, IMMORTAL reminds me of the Gothic romances I loved reading growing up. They were always entertaining and fun reads to curl up with on a rainy day or cold winter night. And I’ve been longing to find something to fill the void of those long-forgotten books. I believe I found that in IMMORTAL.
A brief side note: IMMORTAL has inspired me to to write special “Retro Days” post about these particular Gothic romance novels, including the 1980′s and 1990′s Zebra Gothic publications.
As for IMMORTAL it switches back and forth between the past and present. I liked this angle because the story in the past weaves its way into the story of the present and how they both connect. This also leads to some shocking conclusions. Nevertheless, I liked it better when the story was in the present.
IMMORTAL in some ways reminded me of Libba Bray’s “Gemma Doyle” trilogy but set in modern times. So if you got a kick out of that series, you will definitely like IMMORTAL.
The cover of IMMORTAL is strikingly beautiful with its simplistic design of the necklace in the water. I wasn’t sure when I first read the book what the necklace has to do with the story, but once I found out, I was pleasantly surprised.
I’m looking forward to continuing the series with the second novel, BETRAYAL to finding out how the adventure and love story between Evie and Sebastian plays out.
I’m giving IMMORTAL 4 “Relaxing with a Good Book” Retro pictures for being romantic.
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