Review: Embrace by Jessica Shirvington

Publication Date: October 1st, 2010
Hachette Australia
Format: Paperback, 382 pages
RATING: 2 out of 5 Stars
It starts with a whisper: “It’s time for you to know who you are…”

Violet Eden dreads her seventeenth birthday. After all, it’s hard to get too excited about the day that marks the anniversary of your mother’s death. As if that wasn’t enough, disturbing dreams haunt her sleep and leave her with very real injuries. There’s a dark tattoo weaving its way up her arms that wasn’t there before.

Violet is determined to get some answers, but nothing could have prepared her for the truth. The guy she thought she could fall in love with has been keeping his identity a secret: he’s only half-human—oh, and same goes for her.

A centuries-old battle between fallen angels and the protectors of humanity has chosen its new warrior. It’s a fight Violet doesn’t want, but she lives her life by two rules: don’t run and don’t quit. When angels seek vengeance and humans are the warriors, you could do a lot worse than betting on Violet Eden…

After reading Embrace by Jessica Shirvington, there are two things that I’ve more or less decided to stay the hell away from:

First, ANGEL novels – with the exception of Angelfall series by Susan Ee and Daughter of Smoke and Bone series Laini Taylor.

Second, LOVE TRIANGLES. Jesus Murphy Jones, woman. You’ve read the synopsis. You know there were two guys mentioned that the MC is caught in the middle of and yet, you’ve went ahead and spent a hefty sum of money bringing these books from Australia! What the hell is wrong with you?! Love triangles should die a thousand deaths…preferrably in the pits of hell.

I couldn’t stomach every  character in Embrace. The MC was whiny. The love interests’ characters were supposedly hot but…not and the absence of the parental units were ramphant. This book just didn’t work for me at all.

I normally root for the brooding bad boy in a love triangle but not in this case. I wasn’t rooting for anyone at all. I was apathetic through the entire reading experience.

I’ve come to the conclusion that not all Australian authors are created equal. I also need to be proven wrong that Aussies can only write brilliant reality fictions. So far, paranormal remained a bust; case and point, Saltwater Vampires by Kristi Eagar and Blood Song by Rhiannon Hart. I had a hard time getting into these books.

I’ve read reviews prior to reading Embrace and they’re mostly positive. I’m sorry to be the Debbie Downer in this community but this book was really nothing special. Unfortunately, I now owned the entire trilogy which would probably remain unread in my shelves.

  • I really love the smart, sophisticated world that Shirvington created. I enjoyed her characters, some more than others, obviously.

    Grace Crawford The Maids Red Bank Maid Service

  • Sam

    Love triangles should die a thousand deaths…preferrably in the pits of hell.

    I want that on a t-shirt. 😉

    It's such a shame this book turned out to be a disappointing read for you – especially after you hauled the whole series over from Australia! Most angel books tend to be pretty average reads for me and very few of them have managed to blow me away. I've seen too many negative reviews for this book to want to give it a go. The description is interesting enough but it doesn't sounds like it delivers. 🙁

  • I have that bad habit, too! I have the complete series of the House of Night, Luxe, Blue Bloods, Carrie Jones' Need series, Melissa Marr's Wicked Lovely series… the list unfortunately does go on. I've only read the first books in each of the aforementioned series. I think when buying books that are part of a series, I think to myself that I'm going to get addicted to the series and then will need the next book RIGHT NOW. This has happened sometimes (like with the Vampire Academy series), but I think most of the time I can go without buying all of the books at once.

  • i'm a big fan of Aussie YA lit. I've been importing them when I can afford them 🙂 So far, almost everything that I've read are phenomenal. But I guess it's only natural that I won't like ALL of them. This one was definitely a miss 🙁 Thanks for stopping by!

  • I don't really like angel books, I have this one because I feel I should support a fellow Aussie but I fear I won't enjoy it.

  • Great review! You are tagged at my blog:

  • 🙂 That's good that this book worked for you. It didn't for me, sadly. I have this annoying habit of blindly buying completed series. Jokes on me, I guess. Thanks for stopping by!

  • I read this book a few days ago and really liked it, but the love triangle didn't work for me because I thought Phoenix was creepy and not at all an appealing love interest. I was a big fan of Lincoln, though, because I'm always a sucker for romances in YA books where the female lead falls in love with her older trainer (like Rose and Dimitri in Vampire Academy). I actually just spent quite a bit on money to get my hands on the sequel from Australia because it doesn't come out for another six months in the U.S. and I am very, very impatient!

  • Thanks, Maja 🙂 I'm the stupid one who bought the entire series. Bah. Oh hey, thanks for following back! 🙂

  • I think I've developed allergies to love triangles. These days, I abandon a book as soon as I smell one.
    The reviews of Saltwater Vampries were all pretty disappointing. I have yet to read it, but I'm in no hurry.
    Thanks for the great review. I won't be picking this up at all.
    Maja @ The Nocturnal Library

  • Yes, I agree. The love triangle in Clockwork Prince didn't induce some eyes-gouging on my part. Lol. It was written well. Though it shouldn't come as a surprise since Cassandra Clare is a phenomenal writer 😉

    *sigh* I'm just tired of the love triangle crap. Someone please, tell the authors to stop! Thanks for stopping by, Jennifer 🙂

  • Thanks, Carina! Yeah, it helps if you're not expecting too much. But I'm still a believer in the subjectiveness of reading. What didn't work for me might still work out for you 🙂

  • I like how honest this review is. And LOL @ “Love triangles should die a thousand deaths…preferrably in the pits of hell.”

    At the moment I am reading two books, both sequels. One sequel has a love triangle (Clockwork Prince by Cassandra Clare) and the other one doesn't (Central by Raine Thomas) and it is refreshing to not have a love triangle in YA, once in a while. Though I have to say, the love triangle in Clockwork Prince is so well written because you feel like it really can go any way since both guy characters are so amazing.

  • I don't think I've ever read a negative review for that one, but that's probably why expecations for EMBRACE are always so very high. Too bad you didn't enjoy it and even though I really like love triangles at the moment, I don't want my characters to be whiny or uninteresting.

    Thanks a lot for your honest review, Joy!