Firstly, I have to mention this cover. It’s just not Violet. I just can’t ever imagine the main character ever wearing that outfit. Pretty much any time clothes are mentioned for Violet, they include sweat pants, jeans and t-shirts. Maybe it could be one of her mentors or something, but still. It looks awesome and I get how it would sell, working to the urban fantasy fans, but it’s just not Violet to me at all.
Moving on, I was so excited to get my hands on this ARC. The book actually just came out two days ago. And I must say, if you liked Embrace (book 1), you will most definitely also love Entice (book 2). I tend to be kind of biased against book 2’s in general because a lot tend to be that filler book that just takes up space before the good stuff can happen in the conclusion. However, the one good thing I tend to love about book 2’s in general is that all the realization is over. No more realizing your world is not what you thought it was, and hopefully no more complaining about a lack of normality, and no more taking ridiculous amounts of time to believe in things like magic, or vampires, or fallen angels. All the time can be spent on the good stuff: the action, romance, and story!
And this book definitely focused on the good stuff. Violet and Lincoln are playing the “let’s be fallen angel killing partners and pretend that there is nothing else happening between us” game. Violet keeps thinking about her embracing where she literally had to kill a version of herself. Everyone seems to have Phoenix on their minds (the fallen who seduced Violet and healed her in the last book). And Violet’s human best friend, who is totally in the know (!) really steps forward in keeping everything running smoothly. But the book really begins with the arrival of the new Grigori (3 teens: Spence, Salvatore, and Zoe, and two mentors: Nyla and Rudyard). They’ve come to train with Violet, Lincoln, and Griffin and to all work together to find the ancient scrolls that both sides (good and evil) so desperately want.
There’s training, fighting, nightclub attending, and some mysteries involving Lincoln’s past. There’s some small spark of hope for Violet and Lincoln when they discover a different set of partners who are romantically involved and not dead because of it. Apparently, there’s an exception to the not dead rule for soul mates. Then it’s decided that the scared scrolls are in Jordan (at Moses’ tomb –yes, the Moses), and all the action and romantic drama travels internationally to a totally unique YA setting. Violet pushes her abilities to the max to discover how to find the scrolls. There’s run-ins with the fallen at every turn, and everyone seems particularly interested in making Violet experience her worst fears over and over again.
It all kind of ends with an epic battle in one the most historically significant places of all time. There’s a big betrayal at the very end. And of course there’s death, more things standing in the way of Lincoln and Violet, and a seriously fantastic cliffhanger that only comes into fruition because of the character, Jude (short for Judas –yes, the Judas).
Before I go into serious review mode I need to say that I love that this book doesn’t force religion. Yes, there are things like Moses’ tomb, the 10 commandments, bible references, etc; however, Violet, herself, doesn’t really believe in God. And other religions come into play besides Christianity. There were definite religious differences amongst the Grigori in Jordan and the Grigori from the US. And never is it really said that one religion is right or better than the other; they’re just different. And I thought this was done so well!
Moving on, I loved the new characters! Spence was just completely amazing in a sort of Jace (from Cassandra Clare’s books) type way. Salvatore and Zoe were hilarious, and I loved how Steph, the best friend, flocked towards Salvatore and worked as his interpreter. I loved getting to see more of the angelic powers, and really realizing how unique Violet was in comparison to everyone else. Because that didn’t really kick in until I saw how much more limited all her friends were.
I loved the setting in Jordan. I loved all the scenes with Pheonix, who never quite seems totally evil. He most definitely has a good side, and he most definitely still has some feelings for Violet, even though he pretty much tortured her and planned on possibly killing her. Secrets are revealed (which I always love). And I loved how helpful Steph was. Normally the best friend character just provides some kind of comic relief or some shred of teen normalcy, but Steph was legitimately able to help solve problems with her intelligence, and I loved her all the more for it. Also some of the romance scenes were beyond sizzling!
All the publicity and summaries for this book made it seem to be about this big betrayal. When in fact the betrayal was a small part of the story, and totally predicted. You pretty much know who betrays everyone in the first or second chapter…I was kind of hoping it would be more surprising, but whatever; I think that’s more of a marketing problem than any cause of the author’s.
I give this a 9/10. And I will definitely be anticipating the release of book 3!