The Jewel by Amy Ewing
Series: The Lone City #1
Publication Date: 2nd September 2014
Source: Publisher [Edelweiss]
I'm going to put my hands up and admit that the first thing that drew me to this book was the cover - I mean, look at it! It's so beautiful and amazing, and I just wanted it so bad. And then I read the synopsis and I wanted it even more.
The Jewel follows our main character Violet Lastings - who is a surrogate. All girls born in The Marsh are tested when they hit puberty to see if they are fit to become surrogates for the royal families in The Jewel. The girls are raised and tested in a holding facility until they are ready to go to auction. Violet is purchased by the Duchess of the Lake and she very quickly learns that everything isn't as it seems in The Jewel.
I completely fell in love with this book. As soon as I read the first sentence I was hooked and I honestly couldn't put the book down - and I'm not even kidding. It was about 3am when I finished reading The Jewel because no matter how many times I put it down and tried to go to sleep, I always found myself wondering what was going to happen next and have to pick it back up and read a few more chapters. And I eventually just gave in and flew through this book. It's so addicting!
Violet was an extremely interesting character. She's strong and feisty, and even though she gets distracted by the beauty and wealth of The Jewel to begin with, she very quickly comes to her senses and realises that everything isn't what it seems. Although she makes a few mistakes, Violet is an intelligent character and she learns how to play the Duchess to get what she wants. She's also an extremely loyal and even though she falls in love, she doesn't let that distract her from her determination to save her best friend - which makes her awesome!
The main thing I loved about The Jewel were the surrogates Auguries - which are basically like special powers that they have that they're taught to use when they're in their holding facilities. I really loved seeing Violet use her powers and see what she was capable of. She's an extremely strong surrogate because of her powers - which is why the Duchess wanted her.
I actually really liked the romance in The Jewel. It added something extra to the story which could have also caused even more major problems than it actually did. Ash is actually a really sweet character. He treats Violet like a normal person and he really see's her. They hit it off immediately and I was just so happy to actually see someone being friendly to Violet that I didn't mind the romance at all. In fact, it added loads more complications!
I'm also dying to find out more about the Duchess of the Lake. She's a major bitch and I really want to know why she's so horrible to Violet and everyone else. She's got something else going on.
The ending was a HUGE cliffhanger! I was honestly dying when I realised I'd read the last page and there wasn't anymore. My heart was pounding at the end. And then at the very end there was a major reveal and my jaw dropped. I need book 2 so bad!
Overall, I really loved The Jewel. It was intriguing, there was a lot going on and a lot to uncover. I'm pretty sure that The Lone City series is going to be one of my favourites! I highly recommend this one!