The Jewel by Amy Ewing

Title:The Jewel
Series: The Lone City #1
Author: Amy Ewing
Publisher: HarperTeen
Release Date:September 2nd 2014
Pages: ARC, 358 pages
Source: BEA 2014

Summary from Goodreads:
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.


The Jewel, I had such I hopes for you.  I thought what a beautiful cover and interesting premise, I could not wait to dive into the book.  Unfortunately, the insta-love and main character were not for me.   Violet started out being a very unique, strong-willed and sometimes stubborn strong female lead.  As the story progressed I felt that her stubborn personality started to overpower her smart, strong-willed, intelligent decisions. By the end of the book, I just wanted to shake her silly.  Her life choices were infuriating at times.

Right along side with Violet's stubborn and just plain not smart decisions was the overwhelming insta-love. On a scale of 1-10 of instalove, one being rather subtle but still insta-love, I would rate the relationship between Violet and Ash about an 8!  I just could not stand behind it; after one encounter that was it, she was full commit.  

Insta-love and Violet aside, I did enjoy the setting and the overall concept. The setting is a bit similar to The Selection, with different levels in society each with their own jobs and roles.  The unique thing about The Jewel was the unique abilities the surrogates possessed and their role within that structured society.  I am still intrigued about how the story will play out, especially after the ending.  The ending took me by surprise in a good way, I was not expecting it; it is one of the main reasons I would consider picking up the next book.

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