Published by Hachette Australia on October 1, 2010
It starts with a whisper.
It's time for you to know who you are..."
Stange dreams leave her with very real injuries and there's a dark tattoo weaving its way up her arms. The guy she thought she could fall in love with just told her he's only half-human - oh, and same goes for her. And she keeps hearing a distant fluttering of wings.
Violet Eden is having a very bad 17th bithday.
But if angels seek vengeance and humans are warriors, you could do a lot worse than betting on Violet Eden.
In true Buffy-esque sense, I like to refer to my blog stalking as blog “patrolling”. I can’t pinpoint which one, but it was during one of my patrols that I first heard about Embrace. The gorgeous cover drew me in instantly. From the get-go I figured it would be about angels due to the beautiful smokey wings “embracing” the girl’s back. I was very curious as to what the black feathers meant along with the description “A dark and heart-racing tale”. Once again, my mind wandered and I came to the assumption that the book was about about dark or fallen angels. I really liked how the cover got me thinking. I had so many questions and I just knew I wanted needed to read Embrace to find the answers and ease my internal inquiries.
I think the book summary does a good job of describing Embrace (even a little too good *spoiler warning*) so I’ll skip my usual, and personal quick-summary. Violet Eden has got to be one of my all-time favorite characters. Throughout the book I found myself relating to her on a deeper-level. I was really able to connect and share her feelings. Due to a horrible incident involving a pedo-teacher, Violet has developed into a very persistent and strong young woman. She’s adopted a “never again” attitude paired with a “won’t give up” mantra.
Like the average teenage girl, Violet’s time is occupied by homework, boys, and hanging with her best friend Steph. I completely understand Violet’s hell-no attitude when she’s thrust into a world filled with good and bad angels fighting for humanity’s dominion. Heavy words right? Joining a centuries-old battle is not something you decide lightly. A good portion of Embrace features Violet’s decision process on whether or not giving up her normal life for a legit “higher-calling” is worth the sacrifice. Of course, she doesn’t just sit around adding jelly beans to a scale, weighing the pros in cons. Nope. Violet experiences, on multiple occasions, the consequences involved in ignoring her calling.
Embrace had everything that I love in YA books. Our main character is thrust into a new world, forced to question her beliefs, faced with many obstacles yet – comes out stronger in the end. I’ll will say, you do find out by the end of book one whether Violet chooses to “embrace” her calling, but you’ll very surprised and heart-broken when you read about the elements that affected her decision. There’s a lot of action and deaths. When it comes to the ultimate good vs. evil showdown, they’re tends to be some major casualties. Of course, there’s also a little romance featured in a love triangle. Some find the love triangle tiring, but I personally didn’t mind Embrace’s version. The two guys completing Violet’s love-diabolical, are very different and unique and I eagerly followed along.
The last Embrace aspect I want need to mention is the mythology. I haven’t read many angel-esque novels, maybe a handful at the most. However, time in again I find the stories to be similar. When you’re using the same supernatural-being in various books it’s hard to make your book unique. I think Embrace has the unique down perfectly. The mythology surrounding angels, where they came from, how they came, what they want, what types, and so forth was refreshing and new.