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Ever (2008)

– tekijä: Gail Carson Levine

Muut tekijät: Katso muut tekijät -osio.

JäseniäKirja-arvostelujaSuosituimmuussijaKeskimääräinen arvioMaininnat
1,1637912,486 (3.37)38
Fourteen-year-old Kezi and Olus, Akkan god of the winds, fall in love and together try to change her fate--to be sacrificed to a Hyte god because of a rash promise her father made--through a series of quests that might make her immortal.

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Näyttää 1-5 (yhteensä 79) (seuraava | näytä kaikki)
"Ever" starts out introducing the characters of Kezi, a young native girl, and Olus, a god of the winds. We're not sure exactly where the book is set though it's obviously long ago and far away. One gets the distinct feeling, though, judging by Kezi's family's customs, dwelling and clothing, that her culture is close to the Hebrew tradition, whereas Olus is probably Greek or Roman, or possibly even Persian.

This first part of the book is the strongest. Gail Carson Levine deftly creates two completely different cultures for her characters, gives them their own gods and beliefs, and imagines a richly defined world for them to inhabit. It's when these two characters finally meet that the book starts to collapse.

It's obvious that Levine is going for a focused, spare kind of prose like that in a fairy tale or myth. This doesn't help the reader care for the characters, however, which is the biggest flaw of the book. Kezi and Olus are two very shallow, uninteresting characters. Kezi has no really deep thoughts in her pretty little head besides whom she's going to marry and what weave she should attempt next in the rug she is making. Her worries about her impending sacrifice come off as weak because the next moment she'll be skipping around dancing. Olus is similarly one-dimensional in his complete obsession with Kezi. True, he's a god, but even gods must care about something a little more elevated, mustn't they?

Since both characters are often also described as being shy their love scenes don't add up to a whole lot of passion either. It's mostly mooning eyes and secret smiles. Yes, this is a children's book, but there have been some great, chaste love stories to come out of that genre. This is not one of them.

Through all of Kezi and Olus's trials the reader simply doesn't care. Kezi goes down to the underworld to prove her love while Olus rescues himself out of a well. When you get to the end of the book it seems like the two just haven't suffered enough to deserve their reward.

The book also raises some interesting questions about religion and the role of belief in everyday life, but they are never answered or really explored in depth. This could have been a fascinating attempt for young adult literature - a fairy tale that explores spirituality - but the idea never comes to anything of real significance in the book.

In conclusion, "Ever" is an adequate attempt at an epic, mythological tale but it falls short in its love story and whimpering characters. I do look forward to Levine's next book and hope she returns back to form. "Fairest" is one of my very favorite books for young readers. I know Levine can work her magic again. ( )
  bugaboo_4 | Jan 3, 2021 |
This book was deliciously unexpected.

I’ve had mixed experience with Gail Carson Levine – growing up, I remembered reading Ella Enchanted and disliking it (although an adult reread inspired me to reform my opinion) and as such, I didn’t really seek out her books the way may others did. Somehow, I never put together that one of my childhood favorites – The Two Princesses of Bamarre – was also written by her. So by all rights, Ever is a book I should have read many years ago, because I would have loved it.

And as an adult, I did love it. The writing was a little more simplistic than I prefer in a YA novel. Ever reads as something between middle grade and YA, in as far as the language goes. While some of Levine’s books have lush descriptions, the language used to describe this world is a little less rich. However, that doesn’t make the book any less interesting or the mythology any less well-done.

Levine has created her own world in Ever, mixing something between Mesopotamian myth and early Judaism, with a sprinkling of other ancient religions. Try as I might, I couldn’t find an exact inspiration, so I feel comfortable calling Ever an original fairytale. An answer on Goodreads calls it a retelling from the Torah, and another review I came across labelled it a retelling of Cupid and Psyche’s love story… but it is not quite either of those. It has all the feel of a Greek love story, including the tragedy. In that way, it’s even a bit dark at times, including a human sacrifice. The setting, such far cry from many popular fairytale retellings and much of Levine’s other work, really pulled me into this story.

There’s not a lot to say for the characters – they were interesting in their own way, but they weren’t so unique that they would be memorable. Kezi is a sweet girl who dances all the time – I really liked that part of her – but I never really got a feel for what she looked like in the writing, only how she moved which was so important to her character. Olus, the god of the wind, is described more by his emotional outbursts and the winds themselves, having very little depth to him. As far as gods go, Olus is young and his lack of depth makes some sense, but that doesn’t mean I wasn’t left wanting more.

In line with the simplistic writing style comes an overly simplified love story – in this case, it’s instalove. The two characters are immediately drawn to one another, even before they’ve formally met. While it fits within the parameters of this story, it’s not something I enjoy reading, and it only fits here because of how uncomplex the story is as a whole.

Outside of the mythology, I really enjoyed the themes. Levine doesn’t shy away from complex ideas in her books, even though her audience is younger. One of the major themes in Ever is uncertainty, and in this, Kezi spends a lot of time looking for her god Admant, the one and only. She struggles with theological questions such as how present her god truly is and who scribed the writings – god or man? There is conversation about the wrongness of human sacrifice as well. All of it was interesting, and written by someone who is religious, I felt it was done tastefully. Some religious readers will find this off-putting, and in such, this may not be the best book for them, but I appreciated the discussion around this taboo topic in religion.

That said, I don’t think the book was overly religious. Religion simply plays a major part in mythology, and it’s expected in retellings. What makes this one stand out is that one of the belief systems is based around an omniscient, omnipotent deity that may hit a little too close to home for some people. I felt it was tastefully done within the setting and of course, it should be remembered that this is fiction.

To, to sum it all up – the characters were nothing to write home about, but in a world populated with Cinderella retellings, this original fairytale in a fertile crescent setting with gods and heroes felt so fresh and original. The writing feels geared for younger audiences, but woven in, there are some heavy topics, and if you’re a fan of the genre or author, this is a quick read and a good choice. ( )
1 ääni Morteana | Dec 11, 2019 |
This book is about a young girl who is very beautiful and a wonderful dancer and a young god of winds who fall in love with each other. This book explores the struggles of young love and shows how far the young lovers go in order to be together and a curse that cannot be broken. It also shows the characters struggling with the idea of their god and it's existence.
  arilove808 | Apr 12, 2018 |
I liked Ella Enchanted and Fairest much more than this one. ( )
  SMBrick | Feb 25, 2018 |
Olus is the god of the winds; Kezi us a human girl whose days are numbered. Kezi worships Admat, a type of god many modern people might recognize: singular, omniscient, omnipresent, omnipotent, invisible, and mysterious. When Olus shows up claiming to be a god, her world is turned upside down. How can Olus be a god when Admat is god of everything? And then there's a love story, which is kind of sweet, if quite predictable. Honestly? I wasn't too excited about this one. I loved Ella Enchanted and Fairest, but this doesn't quite fit the same mold. It sort of mashes up assorted ancient mythologies (Greek, Aztec, whatever), tosses in a couple of Old Testament anecdotes, and shakes thoroughly. You have gods and monsters and great deeds and hard decisions and honor and true love. The worldbuilding was lovely, but neither Kezi nor Olus felt very real to me. I felt like I was hearing about it secondhand, rather than experiencing it with the characters. In other words, it felt like a myth: all plot with very little humanity binding it together. ( )
  melydia | Jul 28, 2017 |
Näyttää 1-5 (yhteensä 79) (seuraava | näytä kaikki)
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» Lisää muita tekijöitä (2 mahdollista)

Tekijän nimiRooliTekijän tyyppiKoskeeko teosta?Tila
Gail Carson Levineensisijainen tekijäkaikki painoksetcalculated
Lawrynenko, LarissaTypographermuu tekijäeräät painoksetvahvistettu
Rostant, LarryKansikuvataiteilijamuu tekijäeräät painoksetvahvistettu
Zarycky, HilaryKannen suunnittelijamuu tekijäeräät painoksetvahvistettu
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Englanninkielinen Wikipedia


Fourteen-year-old Kezi and Olus, Akkan god of the winds, fall in love and together try to change her fate--to be sacrificed to a Hyte god because of a rash promise her father made--through a series of quests that might make her immortal.

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Arvio (tähdet)

Keskiarvo: (3.37)
0.5 2
1 14
1.5 2
2 35
2.5 4
3 77
3.5 19
4 79
4.5 7
5 38

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