Thursday, August 28, 2014 09:42

Review 283. Amy Ewing – The Jewel.

16068780Title: The Jewel.
Author: Amy Ewing.
Pages: 358.
Published: September 2nd 2014 by HarperTeen.
Sort: The lone city #1.
Source: Edelweiss & Publisher.
The Jewel means wealth. The Jewel means beauty. The Jewel means royalty. But for girls like Violet, the Jewel means servitude. Not just any kind of servitude. Violet, born and raised in the Marsh, has been trained as a surrogate for the royalty—because in the Jewel the only thing more important than opulence is offspring. Purchased at the surrogacy auction by the Duchess of the Lake and greeted with a slap to the face, Violet (now known only as #197) quickly learns of the brutal truths that lie beneath the Jewel’s glittering facade: the cruelty, backstabbing, and hidden violence that have become the royal way of life. Violet must accept the ugly realities of her existence... and try to stay alive. But then a forbidden romance erupts between Violet and a handsome gentleman hired as a companion to the Duchess’s petulant niece. Though his presence makes life in the Jewel a bit brighter, the consequences of their illicit relationship will cost them both more than they bargained for.
Rating:

*stab, stab, stab* was my initial reaction when I finished this book. I just wanted to break something out of frustration, because this book features one of those dreaded insta-loves – and it’s really, really bad. The other aspects of the book weren’t amazing either, but I could deal with those until I reached the ending. The story just fell apart after the introduction from the ‘romance’ and it’s just not okay to finish a book like that. The more I think about this book, the more I start to hate it. I initially gave it 2 stars on Goodreads, but after finishing my rant I have to give it 1 stars.

Violet – named after her purple eyes, which is already ridiculous – grew up as surrogate. She has been training her special powers in order to create a perfect child in service of a royalty. It’s her chance to shine in The Jewel, the wealthy part of their world, but Violet can only think about one thing: freedom.

I thought it was an okay concept. The royalty can’t have children, so they found out another way to continue their bloodline. I still don’t really know why they can’t have their own children. It doesn't seem important to explain and I don’t think it would make any sense anyway. How is it possible that, from all the people in the world, the royalty can’t have children? They don’t know why only girls from the poorest circle have the strange genetic mutation that causes the Auguries. How convenient! That’s also a way to avoid explanations. I better get more information in the next book.

Most surrogates come from the Mash, the outer circle, where Violet would have grown up in poverty. There are different sections with own roles in society. Lucien picks her clothes and make-up before she is sold. They all get to see their family one last time before they are swept away to The Jewel. The Hunger Games, anyone? But despite all the things I disliked about this book, the descriptions about the luxurious parties and the overall idea aren't so bad.

I felt indifferent to Violet. She never undergoes any change or development, she just stays her bland self that is described as unique, powerful, extreme beautiful and the whole shebang *yawn* To me, she was nothing too special and I’m a bit tired of these too perfect girls that never truly show to me who they are; it’s only told to me. The only thing I liked about her is how she is willing to sacrifice her life to keep her best friend, Raven, save. It shows that there is some strength in her, but it’s all hidden away behind her naivety and her important role that is yet to be revealed.

tumblr_lebncfbC9B1qbezj5”But you, Violet, you have such a strong, natural power, that with one application, you’ve already exceeded my expectations. I’ve worked with many surrogates in my career, and not a single one of them could accomplish what you have done.”

And you know, I kind of liked the beginning. The writing-style is quick and easy, but everything went downhill the moment we are introduced to the handsome Ash with no other traits than his good looks; that’s all we know about him before Violet desperately falls in love with him. He of course answers those feelings, because she is nothing like any other girl, she sees him for who he is, he now realizes how lonely he was etc. You know how it goes. So after three meetings, it’s quite clear they have to share their lives and should get babies together. Well fuck you, because you can’t.

”Violet,” he says, and when he looks in my eyes my stomach somersaults. “I think.. I think I love you.” I feel myself dissolve into a thousand molecules, amazed at how three small words can completely alter my state of being.
“I think I love you too,” I whisper.

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“Violet,” he says, getting up and putting his hands on my arms, as if to steady me. Am I shaking? I guess I am. His fingers are warm against my skin. “Are you all right? Did something happen?”
“I—I love you,” I stammer.
It’s especially creepy if you imagine this situation: Ash is sleeping. She is standing there in the middle of the night. To tell him she loves him. I would be scared.

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So much promise gone to waste, because another author fell into the insta-love crap we all hate. And the best part is when you reach the ending. The whole book is more a set-up where pretty much nothing happens and when the plot FINALLY kicks in, it’s in the last page where the story ends in the middle of the scene. It’s like not finishing your


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I truly wish this book lived up to it’s promise and cover, but it was too good to be true. I still have a feeling I’m going to read the sequel. Damn you, horrible cliff-hanger and quick writing-style.
author image

Mel@thedailyprophecy

Mel is a microbiology technician who is obsessed with Disney, fairytale retellings and fantasy. If she's not reading or blogging, she's either busy with gaming, hanging out with family or watching a TV show. She loves summer and bright nail polish. One of her dreams is to travel the world. She has found her Prince Charming and they are together for 7+ years.

39 comments:

  1. I just need to say that your gif choices are absolutely flawless.

    Shame about the book, though. I loved the cover (despite it being quite The Selection-esque) yet I'd already had my doubts after reading the premise. Most likely my curiosity will win out, and I'll end up reading it, though I think instead of buying it I'll borrow it from the library.

    Great review.

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    1. Thanks, I must admit it was fun to find fitting gifs. It's my favorite part from negative reviews :p

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  2. Ha, I love that this book made you so angry!

    Looks like I'm not missing out on anything. Love your gifs, looks like how I would feel with ~instalove~

    Amber Elise @ Du Livre

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  3. Yeah I will not be reading this one for the sake of my sanity. But you still want to read the next book?

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  4. *sighs* Your review was probably more entertaining than the book itself - ha! ;) Anyway, most of the reviews I've read have pretty much said the same thing - the romance was horrible, the writing was too quick and simplistic and that Violet was annoying - so I think I'm just going to skip this one; which is a shame because it did have a rather decent premise. Thanks for sharing Mel, and, as always, BRILLIANT review! Sorry this was such a disappointment!

    ~ Zoe @ The Infinite To-Read Shelf

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    1. Haha, I'm not surprised everyone feels the same.

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  5. So sad that such a promising book turned out to be disappointing. The cover was so beautiful, the synopsis intriguing, so I thought it would be great.
    Looks like the insta-love was a problem after all. I don't really understand how in the world can two people fall in love at first sight or in a few meetings.It's totally unrealistic and stupid.

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  6. HAHA! Oh my gosh, Mel, you wrapped my feelings up in the first line. I'll be posting my review soon too and we felt the SAME way. Oh the frustration. Those gifs are perfect though, on point. Of course, I knew that I was running a HUGE risk since it looks similar to The Selection and man, I should've trusted my instincts.

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    1. I can't wait to see your review! I haven't read The selection, so I was going in blind in the hope it was.. good.

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  7. Fabulous review, Mel! Especially the ending. Haha.

    Oh my God, I was crazy excited for The Jewel and now I still have to read it and ugh. I'm so over bad books and instalove and books where literally nothing happens till the last page of the book. And I would totally be scared if someone was standing in my bedroom in the middle to the night to profess their love. What in the world.

    I guess I'm excited for the scenes where the luxurious parties happen. That's pretty much it.

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    1. Right?? It's terrifying when someone does such a thing. Not romantic at all.

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  8. Yeah, I lost all my interest in this one with all those reviews.

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  9. I was already iffy about this book, but I definitely won't be reading it now.

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  10. I hadn't planned on reading this one, but I think I'll happily avoid it like the plague now! Thanks, Mel! :D

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  11. Every one is not a fan of the Jewel. Well, the majority. It's a shame it has in interesting premise.

    Lovely review

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  12. This is upcoming for me and I am now full of dread. They warned me, they all did, but I just fell for that deceivingly gorgeous cover. Your choice of gifs are perfect--they encapsulate my distaste for insta!love.

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  13. I still preordered a copy, because it was cheap and it's for my sister, who really doesn't mind insta-love as much as me, so I guess I'll read her copy when she's done. But yeah - I'm pretty much going in with zero expectations now.

    Love the gifs, though :D

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  14. GAHHHHH. This is the first review I've read of this - and I'm so glad it's yours. Your honesty and clarity with reading and reviewing is something I definitely respect!

    That romance feels so insincere. That'd be a dealbreaker for me! Yeah, darn those cliffhangers bringing you back in at the very end. I feel like that's a cop out!

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  15. ugh wow insta love? ew! I've heard a lot of great things about this book though! At least the writing style was quick.. thanks for your honest review, Mel!
    - Farah @MajiBookshelf

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  16. Yeah this book does not excite me at all. I know my review copy is coming soon but I am not looking forward to finding out about the horrible romance and lack of explaining why the royalty are missing that gene, I mean that is definitely surreal. Sigh - thanks for the great review Mel!

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  17. HAH! I love this review of yours Mel. <3 Thank you so much for writing and sharing :D But damn. I'm sorry this book sucks so much :( I have it via Edelweiss too, but I'm choosing not to read and review it. I won't be able to handle it. LOVE the quotes, lol :D For bad reasons, though. AND THIS.

    "It’s especially creepy if you imagine this situation: Ash is sleeping. She is standing there in the middle of the night. To tell him she loves him. I would be scared."

    Now that IS creepy. Sigh. Thank you for sharing sweetie. <3 You are awesome.

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  18. Haha, wow! I love your review, especially since you had most of the same issues with this book that I had. I thought it started off really well and then went completely downhill as soon as Ash was introduced. I was also so frustrated by the fact we never get any answers.

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  19. stab stab stab hahahaha! I totally understand your frustration I mean what with the insta love and Violet being so boring. I didn't really love the Selection and it's one of the books I want to lower my GR rating from 3 to 2, but oh well. Not going to give this the Jewel the time of the day since any book that gets the f-bomb out of YOU? Ohhhh boy. Not worth my time! (It's like not finishing your -- HAHAHAHA. No way. I'm staying the hell away.)

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  20. What is it with the insta-love sometimes? Sorry you didn't like this one, but I've seen a lot of negative reviews. I have the ARC, but I don't know that I even want to attempt to read it. I should so I can say one way or the other... We'll see.

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  21. Well shit! I wish you would have had better luck with this one Mel! That being said, for some reason I'm not surprised that this one would be a flop. When it first began getting buzz, the cover reminded me too much of The Selection so I figured it wouldn't be for me anyways...but then I actually did what I almost never do and got swept away by the buzz. I let i sway me. And I got excited for this book too. Honestly though, reading your review and the quotes you highlighted makes me think I'll feel like you do now when I read this one. Sigh. I really wish ALL authors would agree to QUIT WITH THE INSTA-LOVE. It's never ok. It's NEVER cool. Drop it already! Ugh. Sorry this book was such a dud though, I hope your next read is/was a huge improvement :) xx

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    1. I had high hopes for this one.. it's a shame.

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  22. Lol this is a little upsetting. I'm not really a huge insta-love fan so I probably won't pick this up now. At first it seemed like an interesting book, but I also don't like the sound of that ending. I think I would get super irritated with life if I read that. Haha! However, I will say that I REALLY love your initial reaction after finishing the book, very funny. :D

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  23. "I better get more information in the next book." <- This is how they get you.

    "Well fuck you, because you can’t." <- HAHAHAHAHA, DYING.

    She woke him up to tell him that she loves him again? Like, didn't they just do this in that other quote? What even. I would be pissed if someone woke me up for that. I'm so romantic.

    Happily, I was warned by a few people in time and am skipping this one.

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    1. I KNOW. They are so good with all their traps and tricks.. Frustrating to realize that it works. And yes, I would be pissed if someone woke me up to say that, I need my sleep, haha.

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  24. Yeah, this book was really a huge let-down. The special snowflake character, the romance, the shady world-building were just downright awful. Only the writing was the saving grace, although I can't really say for much since it was 1st person POV and the MC was so boring. I'm not even sure I want to read the next one, and I have a feeling the second book will have a love triangle...

    Faye at The Social Potato

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  25. Um.... I definitely won't be reading it. To be honest, I was already kind of put off because I felt that the cover was uncomfortably similar to that of The Selection, but your review has made up my mind. I won't read this any time soon... Sorry you didn't like it!

    Rita :)

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