Sailing aboard her father’s ship is all seventeen-year-old Camille Rowen has ever wanted. But as a lady in 1855 San Francisco, her future is set: marry a man she doesn’t love in order to preseve her social standing. On her last voyage before the wedding, Camille learns the mother she has always believed dead is in fact alive and in Australia. When their Sydney-bound ship goes down in a gale, and her father dies, Camille sets out to find her mother and a map in her possession – a map believed to lead to a stone that once belonged to a legendary civilization…
I was worried before I read this book that it would turn out to be one of those sappy books that are all about soulmates and falling in lurve. You can’t blame me. Look at the cover! Look also at the trailer. However, to my surprise, I found that the novel was refreshingly brisk and while there are loads of tense moments where hearts beat in the rhythm of first love, it is not the focal point of the novel. And yes, I totally did that purple prose on purpose. Hur. I also alliterate to entertain myself.
Everlasting is an adventure. The kind with swords, pirates, shipwrecks, tough decisions and islands with buried treasure. The novel is populated with colourful characters who will make you chortle, who will make you seethe with anger and who will make you wish you were present right there in the novel along with two loaded pistols. There are spiders, thick and as huge as a man’s palm, that had me shivering and shuddering, there are beasties who would kill you and eat you as a snack between luncheon and dinner and there is good writing, folks.
There are themes of greed, of sacrifices, of filial piety, of acceptance and forgiveness, both of one’s own self and other people. The pace of the novel is brisk at times and I loved how minutely the author has envisioned the world her world is set in. I must say this because I am currently reading a novel that is driving me nuts with its absolutely overwhelming description that this author manages to create a world without descending into extreme verbosity. I felt the heat, felt the spray of the ocean, heard the roar of the beast.
I also liked how the romantic conflict is approached. The physical part of a relationship is addressed and considering that it’s a historical novel, I found that refreshing. She has a fiancé but he doesn’t give her thrills and she has a friend who actually does. There is no insta-love in this, thank you author, but a gradual realization of love that does not seem contrived at all.
In plain speak, I enjoyed the hell out of this novel and I recommend to all you people looking for a good book adventure to go on.