Release Date: 05/08/12
Synopsis from goodreads.com:
Escape from the realm of the dead is impossible when someone there wants you back.
Seventeen-year-old Pierce Oliviera isn’t dead.
Not this time.
But she is being held against her will in the dim, twilit world between heaven and hell, where the spirits of the deceased wait before embarking upon their final journey.
Her captor, John Hayden, claims it’s for her own safety. Because not all the departed are dear. Some are so unhappy with where they ended up after leaving the Underworld, they’ve come back as Furies, intent on vengeance…on the one who sent them there and on the one whom he loves.
But while Pierce might be safe from the Furies in the Underworld, far worse dangers could be lurking for her there…and they might have more to do with its ruler than with his enemies.
And unless Pierce is careful, this time there’ll be no escape.
My thoughts on the book:
Underworld is a terrific follow-up to Abandon. Cabot's writing shines in this novel. Underworld has superb world-building, fantastic character development, and an exciting plot. This is a book that you won't be able to put down.
Abandon ended with Pierce being taken into the Underworld by John in order to protect her from her grandmother, who is possessed by a Fury and trying to kill her. In Underworld, we get to learn more about the Underworld (big shock there, huh) and who inhabits it. We also get to learn more about John and how he became the keeper of the dead. Cabot introduces some new characters, and they're all well-developed and unique. Henry, Frank, and Hope were my favorite new additions. Hope is a little bird that John gave to Pierce in order to make her feel more at home in the Underworld. I'm not going to explain the other two characters because they're kind of a surprise. You'll just have to read the book to find out about them!
The one thing that bothered me a little about this book was the fact that Pierce randomly asked a bunch of dumb questions. Sometimes it seemed to be done to let the reader know what questions they're supposed to be asking, and other times, I think it was done to build suspense, even though Hope knew what was going on and she's a bird. The question thing really didn't work, though. I think less would have been more, and I think the readers can figure out what to think for themselves. Also, I think that having Pierce ask dumb questions just to mislead the reader isn't going to work because it's obvious what's really going on in these instances. Since this was an ARC, the editor may have taken this out. I hope he or she did, but either way, that's why this novel got an A- instead of an A. Otherwise, I simply adored this story.
All of the characters in this book were fantastic. There are no stock characters in Cabot's world. Each character has his or her own unique personality. John is less broody this time around, and Pierce grows up a lot. She's learning how to stand on her own, and she's really trying to grow into her role as John's consort. We don't see much of Alex or Kayla in Underworld, but the new characters make up for that. We don't learn much more about Pierce, but we do witness her growing. We do, however, learn a lot more about John. He's a pretty fascinating character, and he has some pretty cool powers. I hope we get to learn even more about him in the next book.
The world-building continued where Abandon left off, and we get to learn a lot more about the Underworld and how it works. We don't really get to see what part Pierce plays in all of this, but I have a feeling we'll learn more about that in the next novel. We learn more about the rules and what different things (such as John's tablet/smart phone type thing) are used for. Additionally, we got to know more about the Furies, Pierce's necklace, and some of the main families in the Island of Bones.
The plot is fantastic and kept me on the edge of my seat the entire time. There never seemed to be a sense of immediate danger, except at the very end, but there was a sense of suspense. I knew something was going to happen, but I just didn't know when. It was like watching a movie while waiting on the bad guy to jump out. You sit there on the edge of your seat anticipating it long before it happens. That's what most of this book was like. The book focuses on the Furies, of course, and Pierce and John's budding relationship. A lot of what this novel deals with is ironing out the kinks in their relationship, but it also explains more about the Furies, who do happen to jump out from behind things randomly. The pacing is pretty spot on, and I never felt like the book lagged or anything. It's a fairly quick read, but not rushed. The ending is a bit of a cliffhanger, but some things were resolved. I wish it'd been a more complete ending, but it wasn't as cliffhanger-like as some of the books out there. It has made me anxious to read the sequel, though, and this book hasn't even come out yet!
Overall, I loved Underworld, and I would recommend it to fans of Greek mythology (it is the re-telling of Hades and Persephone, after all) as well as fans of paranormal romance. This book has something for everyone, and whether you're a mythology buff or not, you're sure to enjoy it. If you haven't read Abandon yet, I suggest going out and getting it right away so that you're prepared for Underworld when it's released. This is definitely a series you don't want to miss.
Want to pre-order Underworld?