Book Review: The Jewel (The Lone City #1) by Amy Ewing

The Jewel (The Lone City, #1)Title: The Jewel (The Lone City #1) 
Author: Amy Ewing 
Publication Date: September 2, 2014 
Publisher: HarperTeen
Pages: 358
Format: ARC
Source: BEA/Publisher
Age Group: Young Adult
Genre: 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.
The first thing that attracted me to this book was the cover.  It's absolutely beautiful, right?  You might think that the story is about queens, pretty ball gowns and Prince Charmings, well, it's not!  The concept of this story is pretty hard to grasp. Young women are sold at surrogacy auctions to the royals in The Jewel, the Capital, to bear their young for them because they can not have their own children.  These poor girls are treated horribly and are pretty much treated as property.  Their rights are taken from them the very minute they test positive for the surrogacy gene, which is around 12 years old.  I will be honest, it took a lot of me to not throw the book at the wall during certain scenes.  They were pretty harsh to say the least.  I wanted to continue reading because my curiosity was guiding me the whole way through.  I wanted to know where the author was taking this story and if there would be some kind of HEA for these girls.

The story is told from Violet's POV, or should I say, #197. We first meet her at surrogate holding facility where she was brought in at the young age of 12 after being taken away from her family.  Violet is not 16 and is ready to be sold at the surrogate auction. A few hours later, she is on stage hearing these women bid on her.  The Duchess of the Lake ends up buying her and she is taken to her new home, a huge castle in The Jewel. Violet quickly learns that it is best to obey The Duchess of The Lake because if she doesn't, The Duchess has no problem with disposing of her.

Amy Ewing really did a fantastic job in the world building.  She created this world that even though it is full of cruelty, it lets us see that there is always something worth fighting for. Yes, this book is dark, very dark. But I found myself devouring every page until I reached the very end.  And what an ending that was! Amy, how can you do that to us? Now I have to sit and wait for a whole year to see what will happen next!  With twists and turns through out the whole story, Amy Ewing created a unique story for all readers to truly enjoy.             


  1. Dear Ana,

    I just found your blog. :) And now you have a new reader from Germany.

    Thanks for your great review. I found this book on "Epic reads" in Facebook and was curious. I think I should try to read in english. :)

    Best regards,

    1. Awww thank you so much for following! The book was really good. I hope you enjoy it! Let me know after you finish. :)

    2. I will. Need to find space & time between my 130 unread books. o.O


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