Book Review: Never Evers by Tom Ellen and Lucy Ivison

Following the success of Lobsters, their debut in 2014, Tom Ellen and Lucy Ivison have just released Never Evers, their newest and critically-acclaimed book, which promises to be an utterly compelling, hilarious read.

An ideal book for young teenagers wanting a break from their own rollercoaster lives, Never Evers is a compelling story during which readers will grow wonderfully attached to the lovable and sometimes hateable characters Ellen and Ivison have so skilfully created.

Set in the snowy mountains of Eastern France, the story focuses on Jack and Matilda, or ‘Mouse’, as she is more commonly called. Both protagonists take it in turns to share with us how events unfold when they go away on a school ski trip. Jack, a middle-of-the-coach kind of boy, knows perfectly well that he has no place with the cool kids on the back seat with their over-inflated egos and their highly popular status. But he and his friends have a plan about how to conquer the female sex and are determined to return to school having lived the dream: a girl on their arm and an earth-shatteringly cool name for their currently failing rock band. Mouse, whose backstory is so crushing that the reader immediately longs to reach out to her, is just an average Year 9 girl with hopes and dreams that are well on their way to being smashed. Through Mouse, we live both the immense highs and shattering lows of a teenage girl who feels rejected and hated by her once best friend and we share in her devastation as she finally breaks down. These characters are a superb testament to the talent of Ellen and Ivison, who have achieved the perfect mix of innocence, rebellion and humour.

When the same hotel brings Mouse’s and Jack’s school groups together, there is electricity in the air as they meet for the first time at a showing of Romeo and Juliet and the mayhem and adventures begin. Both have their own fears to overcome. Both are filled with excitement about what might happen. And both have people just waiting to laugh when they fall. With competition for popularity points looming around every corner, girlfriends, boyfriends and achieving that first kiss, Mouse, Jack and their friends both jostle and delight in the triumphs and flat-on-your-face failures that make this story so amusing and endearing. And when a famous pop singer suddenly appears on the scene, relationships are further complicated as both boys and girls fight their so-called friends and their fears.

The question is: will Jack and Mouse get their happily ever after? Or will the sparkle of the gorgeous pop star Roland steel Mouse’s affections? Full of addictive twists, turns and laugh-out-loud moments of hilarity, Never Evers will have readers gripped and giggling – this is a book they’ll never ever want to put down!

Written by Kathryn Waite

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