Published by Harcourt Childrens Books on December 27th 2016
Genres: Fantasy, Love & Romance, Magic & Sorcery, Young Adult
Format: Audiobook, eBook, Hardcover, Paperback
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Seventeen year-old Britta Flannery is at ease only in the woods with her dagger and bow. She spends her days tracking criminals alongside her father, the legendary bounty hunter for the King of Malam—that is, until her father is murdered. Now outcast and alone and having no rights to her father’s land or inheritance, she seeks refuge where she feels most safe: the Ever Woods. When Britta is caught poaching by the royal guard, instead of facing the noose she is offered a deal: her freedom in exchange for her father’s killer.
However, it’s not so simple.
The alleged killer is none other than Cohen McKay, her father’s former apprentice. The only friend she’s ever known. The boy she once loved who broke her heart. She must go on a dangerous quest in a world of warring kingdoms, mad kings, and dark magic to find the real killer. But Britta wields more power than she knows. And soon she will learn what has always made her different will make her a daunting and dangerous force.
“To survive these woods, a man has to be as strong as the trees.”
Ever the Hunted by Erin Summerill is a young adult fantasy novel filled with danger, mystery, magic, adventure, and romance.
Ms. Summerill puts us right into the thick of things from the start with the main character, Britta Flannery, weak from hunger and desperate enough to poach on the king’s land for food after her father’s murder. The author’s descriptive imagery and well-written narrative are what really captured my attention from the start. From the first page, we already begin to learn about Britta and the world she lives in as she hunts and how she hunts.
Caught for poaching by the royal guard, she’s offered a way out from the hangman’s noose- find her father’s killer, Cohen McKay, her father’s former apprentice and the boy who broke her heart.
“My life and my land for Cohen… The offer sickens me as much as it thrills me.”
With little choice, Britta sets out to track down Cohen in order to save her life, but she quickly learns not everything is as it seems and she is soon on the trail of finding who really murdered her father and learning the reason why.
What I loved about this novel is the build-up in the adventure and mystery as Britta goes to search for her father’s murderer. The story is rife with intrigue and reveals about Britta, her family, and Cohen. I appreciated that Ms. Summerill brought up each new bit of information gradually and as it naturally fit within the story instead of just as a flood of information. For example, when describing Britta and Cohen’s relationship, she starts by just mentioning the significance of it by italicizing the word “our” in reference to a tree and the carving of their names. Before continuing on with Britta hunting. Then later continues to bring in a little bit more about the couple, interwoven through the action taking place, through Britta’s musings or dreams.
My only complaint about this novel would be that the end felt a little rushed, especially after all the build-up and danger. Although the very end was good and segues to a future installment quite well, it seemed to finish on a off-note for me personally. I loved the progression and development of Britta and Cohen’s relationship throughout the novel. So I think I could have had it end a few pages earlier and been content.
Overall, Ever the Hunted by Erin Summerill is a fantastic novel that is completely engaging and just pulls you in. I enjoyed it very much and happily recommend.
(I voluntarily reviewed an ARC of this book I received from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for my fair and honest review.)