Thursday, June 26, 2014

*Gizmos Book Reviews* Empower (The Embrace Series #5) by Jessica Shirvington

*My Thoughts*

Empower (The Violet Eden Chapters #5) closes out the series that started with Embrace. Violet was then a wet behind the ears Sixteen year old teenager dreading the arrival of her Seventeenth birthday, and hoping to get into art school. She had absolutely no clue about her destiny, or the Grigori, or Angel Makers, or the fact that she wasn't purely human, and neither was her mother. She had no clue how special she really was, or would become over the years, or that death was constantly on the horizon, and that she would face it head on along with a group of friends who have became more like family.

Empower picks up TWO years after Violet walked away from Lincoln and her friends at the end of Endless, and embraced living life as a Rogue Grigori hoping to put her soul and life back in one piece. Violet has been moving from from place to place, taking odd jobs, including the elimination of exiles for The Academy, all while blocking Lincoln from catching up to her, and getting several interesting visitors who both have played roles in Vi's life over the course of the last few books.

I enjoyed Violet's relationship with the Rogues Gary, Carter, Milo, and Turk. I was glad that they ended up not being just tertiary characters who briefly graced us with their presence and then disappeared into the great unknown. They became important allies when Violet stands up against the new threat that has been haunting her, and was the mystery character who took her blood while she fought Lilith to the death.

Even though Violet wanted to move on with her life, and away from the Grigori, she has a hard time doing so when the mysterious villain kidnaps Spencer, leaving his new partner in a coma, and giving Violet no choice but to return to New York, and try to get him back in one piece. I loved that Violet has grown as a character, and actually seems like someone who might be 20 years old. I liked that Lincoln has also grown to the point where he isn't useless, and pointless. He's a leader now who the Grigori look up to and follow into battle. I liked that there was some emotional upheaval between the two before any resolution took place.

I loved that Shirvington moved part of the story to New Orleans, and did a fairly decent job of understanding the culture that has seen French, Spanish, and American influences over the years. I truly do wish there had been more of Spencer and Griffin who have been fixtures in Violet's life since she embraced her Grigori side. I loved how awesome Steph has become as well. As the only human in the organization, she is still respected for her ability to put things together. Hell, I even enjoyed the change in Josephine, who has always been a thorn in Violet's side, but in the end, stands up to be counted when the time is grim.

Can I just say that I am going to miss Phoenix? I know, I know, I've come a very long way from the first time he appeared, and fought hard for Violet's heart against Lincoln, and ended up one of the reasons I dislike 3 way love triangles so much. I loved the way that Phoenix lays it all out on the line for Violet so that she can defeat the powerful villain. I would have loved to see him get a happy ending as well, but I think that there are enough hints and clues as to give readers hope that he will eventually find his soul mate and live happily ever after. Or, perhaps Shirvington would consider doing a spin off novella, or series featuring him. Huh? Huh?

The Violet Eden Chapters ends with Violet now a Twenty year old leader of the Grigori, fully embracing her Grigori side, and her devastating powers that can leave exiles without their powers, while also discovering who her Angel maker is, and making a final choice to whom to give her heart completely to. Violet's powers are above and beyond any other Grigori, and has also become one of the best ass kicking heroines you will read about today. I think Empower is the perfect blend of  suspense, romance, and ending that ties up the loose ends and questions admirably.

Author - Jessica Shirvington
Title - Empower (The Embrace Series # 5)
Published in the US by Sourcebooks Fire
Released: May 6, 2014
Genre: Young Adult Paranormal
Format: Library book 496 pages

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