by Amy Ewing
Series: The Lone City #1
Genres: Dystopia, Romance, Young Adult
Publication Date: September 2, 2014 by Walker Books
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Source: Publisher via Mail
The Selection meets The Handmaid’s Tale in this darkly riveting debut filled with twists and turns, where all that glitters may not be gold.
The Jewel means wealth, the Jewel means beauty—but for Violet, the Jewel means servitude. Born and raised in the Marsh, Violet finds herself living in the Jewel as a servant at the estate of the Duchess of the Lake. Addressed only by her number—#197—Violet is quickly thrown into the royal way of life. But behind its opulent and glittering facade, the Jewel hides its cruel and brutal truth, filled with violence, manipulation, and death.
Violet must accept the ugly realities of her life . . . all while trying to stay alive. But before she can accept her fate, Violet meets a handsome boy who is also under the Duchess’s control, and a forbidden love erupts. But their illicit affair has consequences, which will cost them both more than they bargained for. And toeing the line between being calculating and rebellious, Violet must decide what, and who, she is willing to risk for her own freedom.
The royals can’t have children and this is why they bring in the surrogates, seeing as these specific girls are able to bear healthy children. Every year, an auction takes place so the royals can buy their own surrogate. Violet is one of the surrogates, and even though this wasn’t a live she wanted, the Duchess of the House of the Lake, is kind to her but things are not always as they seem and there are secrets Violet still needs to uncover.
The Jewel is very brutal and dark, at times. It is not easy to read, though. I would flinch and cringe at various scenes. I would bite my nails a few times because this was intense to read. When I went into this story, I thought it was a Contemporary book, but I was so wrong. It is a mixture between Fantasy and Dystopian and readers will devour this story in a heartbeat.
The ending had my heart racing faster than throughout the book and so hard it might have popped out of my chest. I loved my journey with this story. It is so different from anything I have read and so intriguing. I recommend this book to readers that are looking for something new, something daring, something brutal and engaging.
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