Review: The Jewel by Amy Ewing

16068780The Jewel
(The Lone City, #1)
By: Amy Ewing
Publisher: HarperTeen
Published: Sept. 2, 2014
Genre: YA Fantasy


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.


1thoughtsAfter their first menstrual cycle, some girls obtain special powers. Powers that allow them to control somethings color, shape, and growth. Any girl who gains these abilities immediately whisked away to cultivate their new powers. Once they have learned how to harness their new abilities, they are sold at an auction to the highest bidder in order to become their surrogate. Unfortunately for Violet, she gained such powers and has been dealt such a fate.

This book sounded so amazing. I mean, who thinks of things like this? It’s really disturbing to think these people are taking young girls and forcing them to carry their babies. The surrogates are looked upon as nothing more than an incubator. When Violet comes across the other girls at royal events, they wear collars around their necks that attach to a leash their mistresses hold. Of course, Violet has lucked out and has a mistresses who may not treat her as a young girl, but treats her somewhat like a human being.

However, the romance came in out of left field three-quarters of the way through the book and everything just got really bad really fast. I mean, these two don’t even meet until that moment and all of a sudden it’s insta-love. They can’t live without each other. They’ve each been handed crappy fates where they must “serve” :wink wink: the royals. Except when they first lay eyes on each other, sparks fly, magic happens, the universe stops… call it whatever you want but these two instantly fall in love and risk their lives to be together behind everyone’s backs. Yup, if you can’t tell already, I was not a fan of this new development. I’d have been fine if they met at the beginning and sort of developed feelings over time but that was not the case.

This had so much potential to be amazing but it missed the mark for me. It started off great but that insta-love that quickly consumed the novel, overshadowing the story, was just too much. There were a few times at the point where I was ready to put the book down and walk away but I had invested so much time in reading it up until that point. I wound up finishing it but not even the cliff-hanger of an ending will cause me to pick up the next book.


1favequote“Hope is a precious thing, isn’t it,” she says. “And yet, we don’t really appreciate it until it’s gone.”


5 Thoughts on “Review: The Jewel by Amy Ewing

  1. Sorry this one didn’t work for you 🙁 But I would have loved to have special powers with my first menstruations, that’s a good idea !

  2. I am not surprised that this was a flop. You’re not the first person who didn’t like this. The previous reviews I’ve read more or less had the same issues that you did. I’m only thankful I’m not into books like this 😀

    • It was displayed at the library in the YA section and the cover snagged my eye. I never heard of it before then but decided to give it a shot. :\

  3. That seems to be what most of the bloggers I read thought of it. It really is a great set up. It’s a shame it didn’t pull it off.

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