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February 13, 2013

Blog Tour: Emblaze by Jessica Shirvington – Review, Interview, Claudia’s Short Story, and G!veaway

Welcome to our Tour Stop for

Emblaze (The Violet Eden Chapters #3) by Jessica Shirvington

presented by Sourcebooks!

And what a stop it is!

On top of our thoughts on this fantabulous book, we’ve also got
a Top Favs interview with Jessica Shirvington, herself!
AND we’ve also got a a never before published short story by Jessica
about a minor character: Claudia!

Be sure to enter the giveaway found at the end of the post!

emblaze-mock-cover

Once again Violet Eden faces an impossible choice … and the consequences are unimaginable.

Violet has come to terms with the fact that being part angel, part human, means her life will never be as it was.

Now Violet has something Phoenix – the exiled angel who betrayed her – will do anything for, and she has no intention of letting it fall into his hands. The only problem is that he has something she needs too.

Not afraid to raise the stakes, Phoenix seemingly holds all the power, always one step ahead. And when he puts the final pieces of the prophecy together, it doesn’t take him long to realise exactly who he needs in order to open the gates of Hell.

With the help of surprising new allies, ancient prophecies are deciphered, a destination set and, after a shattering confrontation with her father, Violet leaves for the islands of Greece without knowing if she will have a home to return to…

add to goodreadsEmblaze (The Violet Eden Chapters #3) by Jessica Shirvington
Publication Date: March 19, 2013
Publisher: Sourcebooks Fire

Order your copy at:
Chapter-Indigo | amazon | B&N | TBD | indiebound

MaryAnn NewAuthor, Jessica Shirvington, has done it again with the third installment to The Violet Eden series. I could not tear my eyes away from this unforgettable follow up to Entice.

In Emblaze, we bear witness to the pain and torment that both Violet and Lincoln go through by denying what their souls want…to be able to finally be together. We painfully watch as these two lovebirds fight what is meant to be. It was heartbreaking to watch Violet yearn for the love she so wants from Lincoln, and it’s equally heartbreaking to watch Lincoln distance himself from Violet more and more.

With Phoenix presenting himself as the “big bad”, and with his absolute desire to obtain the Scripture that will call forth Lilith, Violet and Phoenix have multiple confrontations with a battle of “who is sneakier than the other”. It also seems that Violet’s father has decided to take a more permanent roll in Violet’s life meaning things have just gotten a whole lot more difficult for Violet.

With an ultimate battle in the wings, Violet has so many choices that she needs to make. Choices that will affect her life, the lives of her family and friends, and the ones she loves the most.

Emblaze by Jessica Shirvington ripped my heart out and stomped on it repeatedly. When I thought things were going to finally be as it should be, something would happen that would throw everything out the window. My heart went out for Violet. Her many attempts in trying to convince Lincoln that they belong together were gut wrenching, and had me praying to the book plot gods that she can finally find some sort of happiness in her life.

With her powers becoming stronger and stronger every day, her love for Lincoln grows just as strong. After the Scooby gang manages to decipher what the Scripture says, they work around the clock trying to concoct a plan that will thwart the evil plans that Phoenix has.

Oh Phoenix… I was just getting over my crush on this ultimate bad boy in the beginning of the book, when Jessica Shirvington writes a chapter that is in the point of view of Phoenix himself, and OMG you guys…I fell for him all over again! I love, love, loved that chapter. We are treated to how Phoenix’s mind was working upon his first encounter with Violet. The inner conflicts he had about his feelings towards her. Argh! It was so epically epic. I would say that if there is one part that you just HAVE to read in Emblaze, it would have to be this little “confession time” that Phoenix has.

For some reason, I know that I’m supposed to be falling harder for Lincoln in Emblaze. With his brooding and a love that just cannot be scenarios, but I found myself getting annoyed with him and his attitude…and it progressively got worse as the book wore on. I understand that there’s a reason why he and Violet need to distance themselves, but buddy! Have a little heart! This poor girl is pouring her heart out to you and you can’t even offer up a smile! Pffft!

BUT author, Jessica Shirvington, toys with my emotions yet again when she writes this totally romantic scene where all it took was a paragraph. A verbal diarrhea of words that had me teary eyed and dismissing all the negative thoughts I had towards Lincoln. Oh Ms. Shirvington, how you toy with my heart!

And don’t even get me started on the cliff hanger ending! I have so much I want to say about Violet’s attitude regarding the events that unfolded, but to do so would most definitely be such a spoiler, that I’m positive I would never be forgiven.

In summation, Emblaze is a book riddled with love… a soul mate’s love, a father’s love, a best friend’s love, and a love that was hidden so deep, that the truth of it will totally shock the socks off of you.

You can check out our review of EMBRACE HERE!

You can check out our review of ENTICE HERE!

Interview

Top Favs with Jessica Shirvington

You’re home alone, there’s a fire! Top 3 things you’d grab and save from the fire.

JS-fire

1. My laptop (it has all of my photos and manuscripts).

2. My memory drawer – it is where I hide all the cute things my kids have done over the years and also a journal that I wrote for each of them while I was pregnant with them.

3. The jewellery box – not because of the value but because of the occasions they represent. There are things from my parents, husband and friends and there are necklaces and bracelets that were given to our kids as christening gifts. They mark time.

Top 3 Favorite snacks while writing and why:

JS-snacks

1. Chocolate bars. I love any chocolate with honeycomb or chewy caramel.

2. Coffee – I’d take it intravenously if it were my only option!

3. I don’t have a third. I just rotate between one and two.

Top 3 favorite songs to listen to while writing and why:

JS-songs

1. Anything Florence and The Machine

2. It depends what I am writing, but for the book I have most recently been working on I’ve listened a lot to Lisa Mitchell’s Valium. Have a listen: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=khOah0beLso

3. I also really love a lot of Muse. Lately I have been listening to Madness quite a bit – It definitely reminds me of Violet, Lincoln and Phoenix: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ek0SgwWmF9w

Top 3 favorite techniques to overcome writers block and why:

JS-writers-block

1. Stop thinking about having writers block

2. Remind yourself that doctors and lawyers don’t get to have days at work when they just aren’t feeling it. Why should authors?

3. Write something.

(as you can see, I don’t really love the writers block concept:)

Top 3 musicians/bands/groups and why:

JS-Bands

1. Florence and The Machine – The lyrics are so rich and haunting. I love so many of their songs.

2. Muse – so many of their songs combine with amazing music get into my soul.

3. Sia – She writes some incredible lyrics (not just for herself!)

Top 3 favorite movies of all time and why:

JS-movies

1. Top Gun – just because it’s Top Gun! Hello!

2. Ever After with Drew Barrymore – I loved this Cinderella tale. I thought Drew Barrymore was great in it and I also loved the movie score.

3. Romeo and Juliet – the Baz Luhrmann version with Claire Danes and Leonardo Dicaprio. It was the first movie I ever saw with my husband and whenever I watch it I’m reminded of a time long ago when I didn’t hog all the popcorn. Plus, awesome soundtrack!

Top 3 favorite dream destinations and why:

JS-Destination

1. Whistler, Canada – I actually just got back from a vacation there and I know I can’t wait to go back.

2. Florence, Italy – again, I have been before, but you can never go enough. It is romantic and rich with history.

3. Chamonix, France – My family and I are really enjoying winter vacations at the moment. I would love to visit Chamonix – it looks magical!

Short-Story

CLAUDIA – FAMILY TIES

(A never before published short story by Jessica
about a minor character: Claudia. )

My feet tangled beneath me and I stumbled forwards, almost taking a full-on nosedive.

I couldn’t believe it!

I found my balance, hitched my backpack up and powered on.

I was going to be late, again, and Giuseppe was going to kill me.

No, worse, he was going to fire me.

Last time was ‘the last time!’ he’d said, shaking his finger at me, blowing the greying curls that fall over his eyes.

But I needed that job. I needed all of my jobs. So I kept running, knowing that by the time I arrived at the Pizzeria I’d be disgusting and sweaty, and in-desperate-need-of-deodorant. Plus, I was still in my Hades wait-staff uniform, another thing that never went down well. Working a full cycle of shifts at Hades and the opposite at Giuseppe’s had me slogging from 9 a.m. to 1 a.m. seven days a week and constantly running from one side of the city to the other in the 30-minute-between-shifts gap.

I rounded the corner, almost there.

Giuseppe would forgive me. And if he started yelling, I’d just cry. That always worked. He was a tyrant, but the man couldn’t handle tears.

I pulled up short of the restaurant when I heard an all-too familiar whistle. Panting, I looked around until I spotted him. The second I saw my brother, Sean, my stomach churned. Something was wrong.

What now?

What more could possibly go wrong?

As if our lives didn’t suck enough already.

He was hidden beneath the shadow of a sunken doorway across the street. I put my hands on my hips and waited. If he wanted to talk to me he could damn well cross the road.

I could just about feel one of his heavy sighs from over the street. He was only three years older than me, but he’d assumed the man-of-the-house role a while back and since then he acted as if he was twenty-two going on fifty.

“Real discreet, Claudia,” he said harshly, pulling me by the arm to the side of the pavement. He was wearing his street clothes, which meant he hadn’t been working one of his legit jobs today. I tried not to notice.

“Sean, whatever it is, I don’t have time. I’m late for work again. Giuseppe will give my job to one of his five million cousins if I don’t hurry up.”

His expression softened. I wasn’t the only one who worked constantly. There was a time when all Sean did was chase his med degree and chase girls. He was so different back then, but those days were well and truly gone. Everyone thought he’d have this amazing future, become some kind of medical savior. I guess in a way he had – just not the way he’d thought he would, and not the way that guaranteed any kind of bright future either. Sean was our family’s savior. After what Dad did … Sean kept us all going, kept us together and safe. He looked over his shoulder. He was scared.

More than usual.

I grabbed hold of his clammy hand. “What is it?”

He shook his head, more to himself than me. “We have to go, Claude’s. We have to pack up and leave.”

“But, but … we need more time! We don’t have the money yet!”

“Shh,” he snapped, his eyes urgent as he looked up and down the street. “I have it. I pulled in a favor. Claudia, we have to finish this. We’ll give them the money after your shift tonight and then we’re out of here. All of us.”

“Why? I mean, if you have the money, wasn’t that the whole point? If we give it to them won’t they leave us alone? This is supposed to be the final payment.” We’d worked so hard for the last year. It had all been leading to this. Every single cent we’d made had gone to them.

“They’ll never leave us alone, Claudia. I … I don’t know what they are but they know things … and they can do things that normal people can’t. I … I saw one of them this afternoon …” he paled and grabbed me by the shoulders as if to steady himself. “I can’t even tell you, it was so horrible. I just know we have to go. We have to get Taylor and Mum away from this place.”

I knew he was right. Deep down, I’d always known the men who Dad had been mixed up with before he died were not normal. I don’t know how, instinct I guess. Sean had always known too, even if we hadn’t wanted to admit it to one another. It was why we’d being working so hard to pay off Dad’s debt. Whatever gambling mess he’d gotten himself into, it had ended up costing a lot more than simple interest. I knew I wasn’t the only one in my family who suspected his death wasn’t just a simple car accident. Sean and I had never told Mum about what his body looked like when we’d gone to identify him. We never would.

I nodded.

“I can ask for my pay tonight. Here,” I fumbled in my bag, pulling out my wallet. “I have my pay from Hades, too.”

Sean sighed with relief as he took the money. My contribution was important, but Sean was the one who brought in the big bucks. He’d given up everything and I knew he couldn’t be doing anything good to bring in the kind of money he was. I wished I could hate my father for it. But he was a victim too.

“I’m going to get us away from all this, Claudia. We’ll go somewhere else and start fresh. We’ll get Taylor into a good school. You’ll be able to go back to art school. Everything will be better.”

I looked toward the pizza restaurant. I could hear Giuseppe’s booming voice. “I better go.” I threw my arms around my brother and he hugged me back briefly.

“I have to go organize a few things. Stay in the restaurant until I get back. Then we’ll go give them the money and we’re gone.”

I bit my lip nervously, but nodded. “Be careful, Sean.”

He mustered a small smile. “Don’t tell anyone, okay. We have to just disappear.”

He was looking around again, pulling his hoodie over his head. Whatever he’d seen had more than frightened him.

“I know. I won’t.”

* * *

I watched the clock on the wall. Giuseppe yelled at me for twelve minutes, which was a long time even for him. I tried to turn on the waterworks but they didn’t come. I don’t know if it was because I was too petrified something might go wrong with Sean’s plan or if I was too excited about the prospect of finally being free of Dad’s unfortunate legacy.

Sean had known about Dad’s gambling when he was alive. Apparently a few weeks before the accident Dad had broken down and told him he was in trouble – that the people he owed money to were dangerous and would come after him. Sean had dropped out of university and started his first shift at a bar that night. I remember yelling at him the next day – not knowing why he’d done it – calling him a deadbeat loser.

I went through the motions. Collecting dirty plates, loading them up on my already tired arms. At least working here, the customers didn’t get too drunk or handsy. Some nights after a shift at Hades my overly pinched ass was the sorest part of all. Here, I just had to put up with being yelled at by Giuseppe and Mario and Antonio and, well, there were a lot of them, for six hours. At least this would be my last six hours of that.

I took a deep breath while making my way to the next table, topping up their wine. Everything was about to change. If Sean and I could just pull this off, if we could get Mom and Taylor packed up tonight, by tomorrow … by tomorrow we could be starting our new life. I could get another job and actually use the money for something I wanted. I knew the first thing I’d buy – after a haircut. Paint.

“Pizza, Claudia!” Mario yelled at me, from behind the wood-fired oven.

I collected the three scorching hot pizzas, which meant one was, resting against my wrist, but I was used to it. I’d been working there for over a year, my arms had burn scars that I was sure would never go away. I delivered the pizzas and noticed new customers seated in the dinky corner. We were obviously full – it was always the last table to go.

I headed over, recognizing one of the diners. Violet Eden and I had gone to the same school, but I’d been ahead of her and apart from the one community art course, we rarely crossed paths. But now this was twice in a few weeks. Weird how that can happen – as if someone is suddenly supposed to be in your life for some reason.

She was looking at me, panic drawn all over her face. Last time I saw her she was at Hades with some hottie, getting drunk on the sly. Nothing I hadn’t done a couple of years back – half her luck. Anyway, she’d forgotten my name. It’s so easy to tell when people do that – maybe because it happened to me all the time, all they see is my bright red hair. Taking those last few steps. I twisted a little so my name badge would be in her line of sight and as I stopped in front of her table I flicked my hair back giving her full view. I could tell the moment her eyes latched on to the golden nametag by the relief flooding her features.

“Hey, Violet,” I said.

“Hey, Claudia. So this is the other place you work at,” Violet said, recalling our last conversation. At least she’d remembered that.

“Yeah, unfortunately.” I smiled but something about her was off. She was tense, sitting high in her chair, holding the menu with an almost desperate grip. I thought she looked a little frightened. I leaned towards her, about to ask if she was okay, before stopping myself. I barely knew her, and I was about to know her a whole lot less once this city was in our rearview mirror. So instead, I decided on something more neutral. “Shitty tips and crap boss, but it works,” I said with a shrug, using the movement to step back a little.

Violet smiled awkwardly, looking between her dinner partner and me. I looked at him for the first time and almost fainted right there.

“Claudia, this is Phoenix,” she said, kind of leaving things there, up in the air. I wasn’t much help. I was speechless. He was beautiful. I mean, not hottie like – he was utterly, earth-shatteringly and painfully beautiful.

Did people like this actually exist?

He had this presence around him, some kind of humming vibration coming off him and I … Oh. My. God. I just wanted to dive in, lose myself in it.

He didn’t even look at me but it didn’t matter. I felt as if he knew exactly what I was thinking. I stared. I wasn’t usually brazen with guys and especially not ones who looked like that … but I couldn’t look away, couldn’t bear to take my eyes from him, even if all he was doing was staring at his menu, completely disinterested in me.

“Pleasure,” he said, now looking over his menu to Violet.

But when he spoke something happened; a feeling foreign but not, came over me as if it wasn’t mine but had being molded from me somehow. A sureness … that Sean had been right. We needed to leave this city, get as far away from here as possible. Strangest of all, I knew the light-bulb moment had something to do with the guy sitting at the table, Phoenix.

I swayed, overwhelmed, and had to brace a hand on their table.

Violet was watching me strangely. Fair enough, I was macking on her dinner date. How did she suddenly have all these adorable guys around her?

“Hi,” I said, trying to recover, looking at Phoenix. “Can I take your order?”

Violet cleared her throat. “I’ll have the Diavola pizza, thanks.”

I saw Phoenix smirk. He was looking at her so intently. She had her eyes cast down, avoiding his. I almost reached out and slapped her. It wasn’t just that I’d been unlucky in love with a string of guys that fit into the live-and-learn category of life, it was that with everything my life had – or rather had not – turned into, to have one person look at me the way he was looking at her just for one moment. I couldn’t imagine a more heavenly thing.

Phoenix glanced my way briefly. “The same, and a glass of the Cabernet,” he said dismissively.

I nodded, writing it down, trying to process the overpowering influx of emotion I was experiencing. Yet again, I was so sure all of a sudden that I had to leave – had to get away.

I staggered away from the table, desperately needing to get away from them, but half wanting to grab a hold of Phoenix and beg him to take me away. But with each step my mind seemed to clear. I had no idea what was going on, but the feelings that had started to stir when I’d been near that guy stayed. The weirdest thing of all was that, I felt as if Phoenix had been trying to help me. I shook my head at myself. Crazy. He didn’t even know me.

I went to the bathroom to pull myself together. Whatever had just happened, it didn’t matter. We were leaving. Everything would be okay. I splashed water on my face and reloaded the toilet-paper holders before heading back out to the busy restaurant, grabbing empty glasses from tables as I passed. That was Giuseppe’s rule, ‘never waste a walk anywhere; you go to the kitchen, bring something with you! You leave the kitchen, you take something out!’

“Pizza! Claudia!” Mario yelled. I grabbed the pizzas and got back to my tables, avoiding Violet and her friend. When I spotted Giuseppe I even got up the gall to ask him for my pay at the end of the shift.

He spat out a string of words in Italian and marched off. I smiled. For Giuseppe, that meant yes. I actually felt bad that I would have to leave without saying goodbye. Maybe Sean would let me write Giuseppe a letter once we were settled.

“Pizza! Claudia!” Mario yelled, again from behind the wood-fired oven. I made my way over to the two waiting Diavola’s. Violet’s order.

I dropped the dishes on their table quickly, trying not to look at Phoenix. Now that I’d managed to get my head straight, I didn’t want to risk it all muddling up again – and I didn’t want to do something stupid like throw myself at him right in front of Violet. For some reason I couldn’t trust myself around that guy so I concentrated on my other tables, hoping that I might be able to make some extra tips.

When the peak-time slam settled down, I offered to go out back and start on clean up. It was usually the job everyone avoided, but I wanted to do something nice for Giuseppe and it meant I could daydream about where Sean and I would take the family.

Taylor would be so excited. She hated her school. We’d had to move her into a public school six months ago because we couldn’t cover the private tuition fees. She didn’t complain but the new school didn’t have a music department and I’d heard her crying every night for the first few weeks. Taylor had an amazing voice – I’d never heard an eight-year-old like her. And she loved choir. There was something about her – she was good. Sean and I both knew it – of all of us Taylor was the best. She would do something amazing with her life. Make a difference. And Sean and I would do anything to protect her so she could.

I started wiping down the prep benches and putting away ingredients in the cool room. I wouldn’t care if I never ate a pizza again in my whole life. Pizza and the occasional pick up from the kitchen at Hades had been the basis of all our family meals for the past year. There is only so much pepperoni one person can take.

I hummed to myself as I worked. This was it. Everything would be better once we were gone. We’d done the best we could, paid off Dad’s debt and now it was time to get on with our lives. Maybe Sean would go back to med school. Maybe Mum would be happy again and let go of some of her guilt. I think she knew what Sean and I had to do to keep us safe – she just couldn’t bear to talk to us about it. Mum was an Irish woman and her pride had been stripped away, but with this new start …

I tied the rubbish bags and used my back to push open the alley door that led out to the bins. Caught up in the disgustingness of my shoes sticking to the dirty ground, I didn’t even look behind me and backed right into what felt like a brick wall. A very human-shaped brick wall, that is.

I dropped the rubbish and tried to spin around, but I barely made any progress before an arm closed around my neck and started dragging me into the darkness of the alley while I gasped, watching the kitchen door slam shut.

Beyond the sounds of my scuffling feet and strangled whimpers I could hear the noises of the world around me – the traffic, the hustle, the buzz of distant voices in the air. But they were so far away. Already I feared I would never again be a part of those noises coming from the end of the alley – the sounds of life.

I screamed, struggling to get away from the person dragging me into the darkness. But he was so strong, it barely seemed an effort for him to counter my attempts until, all of a sudden, he dropped his hold on me so fast I fell to the ground. Too sacred to look around and face my captor, I scrambled on hands and knees, my sights fixed on the kitchen door. If I could just get inside …

But he grabbed the back of my shirt and pulled so hard the fabric ripped apart.

I heard a growl. I froze. Whatever feral noise that was, it was not anything human. Did he have an animal with him? Before I could stop myself I spun around in a crouch to see him and terror I’d never believed existed encased me.

He was incredibly tall and eerily thin, except for his shoulders which seemed to be twice the width of him. He sneered at me wickedly, as if enjoying my fear and ran an eager hand through his bright white hair that stood out like a beacon on his otherwise black outfit.

“You should not have tried to leave. You belong to us.”

Oh God, help me!

I desperately looked down the end of the alley.

“No, no,” I stammered. “We … we have your money. My brother will be here any second. We have all of your money!”

He watched me with hungry eyes that had me trying to shuffle back.

“Your brother needs to be taught a lesson. You’re it.”

He was going to kill me. Sean would come to get me in an hour and he’d find me dead. I didn’t want to die.

“Please!” I panted between fear-filled gulps. “Please, we’ll do anything. We’ll get you more money.”

“Should’ve thought of that before.” He shrugged. “But they don’t send me to negotiate,” he growled.

I backed up until I hit the wall, sobbing and let out a final scream.

The man moved fast, inhumanly fast, grabbing me by the hair, pulling me to my feet.

All I could think about was Taylor. I prayed that she would at least go on. That Sean would find a way to keep her safe – I knew he would.

The tall blond winked as his hand moved back. He was going to beat me to death and by the look in his eyes – he was planning to take his time.

But just before his hand should have collided with my face, he stopped, his arm dropping and his attention drawn to the end of the alley.

I strained under his tight grip to see what he was looking at. Someone was walking towards us.

I started to scream again, a high-pitched desperate holler for life.

The man yanked me savagely, twisting me so my back was to him and his arm, once again, was around my neck.

When the person coming down the alley was only meters away I saw who it was.

Phoenix.

Violet’s friend.

But he looked different. Stone faced his cold eyes were fixed on the man holding me. Suddenly, I didn’t know if things had just improved for me or not.

‘This is not your business,” the man holding me said menacingly.

Phoenix shrugged like he didn’t have a care in the world. He didn’t look frightened at all. “Just made it mine, Cherub,” he said the last word with venom.

“She’s our property,” the man snarled.

Phoenix didn’t respond. I wondered if he was considering just walking away. If he did, I was dead.

Footsteps pounded down the ally and another figure came into view.

“Violet!” I screamed before I could think. “VIOLET! HELP ME!”

The man yanked my head back, his grasp on my neck tightening while his other hand clamped down over my mouth.

I kept my desperate eyes on Violet.

Oh God. I’d just brought her into all of this. What had I done? She couldn’t help me, how could she? She was just a girl, younger than me. She was watching on, petrified. If I had another chance I’d yell at her to run.

Phoenix whispered something harshly at her but then he turned back to us, a different type of resolve now on his face as he positioned himself between Violet and us.

“Release her,” he said, his voice quietly rebounding off the alley walls threateningly.

I felt the man back up half a step and he did something to me. It felt as if thick syrup was poured over my body, inside and out, covering all of me and then hardening, like glass. Impenetrable glass. And I was locked within.

He threw me down, my head smacking into the concrete and looked at me with absolute hatred as he commanded, “Kneel before me.”

I couldn’t stop myself. I wanted to kneel for him even though deep down I was still there, was still petrified, he owned me. I had to do as he commanded.

I crawled to his feet, blood dripping from my head onto my hands and I knelt.

“Beg me to take your life,” he spat at me.

My mind fought feebly. Sean was supposed to come for me. Was this the price I would pay for dreaming? Would this be the price Sean would pay, too? My heart pounded with fear as the tall man’s image morphed into something terrifyingly creature-like. I considered I might already be dead and in some kind of hell. Either way, I was in absolutely no doubt, I must do as I was told.

“Kill me. P-p-please,” I stuttered, tears streaming down my face.

“No! Let her go!” I heard Violet scream. But it was all too far away now. “Claudia! Claudia, run!” She may as well have suggested I fly. Did she not see the terrible things surrounding me?

The man pulled me up, spinning me to face Violet and Phoenix and put a hand flat on either side of my face, holding me still.

“If you want her, come and get her,” he challenged, adding another word at the end I did not know; “Grigori.”

He lifted me into the air, holding me out toward them.

Pain registered distantly. People were not supposed to be held mid air by their heads, but I just dangled, completely disconnected, locked away in my glass prison.

I knew what he was going to do. As if he had somehow whispered it tauntingly in my ear.

Violet launched herself toward me, panic-stricken but brave, eyes on mine, arms outstretched. She knew too.

And then, I saw Phoenix. As if he’d somehow forced me to look in his direction and instantly … everything, all the pain, the fear, even the feelings of entrapment vanished. I was me and I was not afraid.

I was at peace.

About the Author:

Jessica Shirvington is the author of THE VIOLET EDEN CHAPTERS also known as THE EMBRACE SERIES. An entrepreneur, author, and mother living in Sydney, Australia, Jessica is also a 2011 finalist for Cosmopolitan’s annual Fun, Fearless Female Award. She’s also one of the lucky few who met the love of her life at age seventeen: Matt Shirvington, a former Olympian and current sports broadcaster for FOXTEL and Sky News. Married for almost eleven years with two beautiful daughters, Sienna and Winter, Jessica knows her early age romance and its longevity has definitely contributed to how she tackles relationships in her YA novels. Previously, she founded a coffee distribution company, Stella Imports, in London, and before that was involved in the management of restaurants Fuel Bistro and MG Garage in Sydney. Jessica is now a full-time novelist and living her dream.

Connect with the Author: Website | Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads

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37 Comments

  1. Jenea W
    2/13/2013

    Mmmmm, Pheonix…. Wonderful review. I am looking forward to this one. Love the short story.

    Jenea @ Books Live Forever

    [Reply]

  2. Maureen
    2/13/2013

    I pick Team Lincoln.

    [Reply]

  3. Vivien
    2/13/2013

    I don’t know!!! Too hard to choose.

    [Reply]

  4. Zara Alexis
    2/13/2013

    Team Phoenix! :D
    Zara Alexis recently posted..Top 10 Favourite RomancesMy Profile

    [Reply]

  5. Alexa
    2/13/2013

    Well I can’t wait to read this one. I’m also on the blog tour and I really must get to this soon. I really love Phoenix and now that I know there is a whole chapter about him I simply must read it. :)

    Thanks for the great review
    Alexa recently posted..Turns Up the Heat: Thief ReviewMy Profile

    [Reply]

  6. Holly U
    2/13/2013

    Team Phoenix :)

    [Reply]

  7. Sarah p
    2/13/2013

    I would have to say team Phoenix :)

    [Reply]

  8. Christine
    2/13/2013

    Oh, Lincoln all the way! Can’t the nice guy finish first for once and not the “bad boy”?!? Not to mention I think Lincoln and Violet have so much more chemistry…I never felt anything between her and Phoenix.

    [Reply]

  9. DeeDee Griffin
    2/13/2013

    Team Lincoln of course! I’m not sure why there even is a Team Phoenix :)

    [Reply]

  10. Erika
    2/13/2013

    Haven’t started this series yet so I’m not sure but I’d love to soon! Thanks!

    [Reply]

  11. Stephanie W.
    2/13/2013

    Team Lincoln!! Without a doubt! I LOVE this series and can’t wait to read EMBLAZE. Thanks for the giveaway!
    Stephanie W. recently posted..Cover Love!My Profile

    [Reply]

  12. KYLA WHITLEY
    2/13/2013

    Team Lincoln!
    jukyjoauka at aol dot com

    [Reply]

  13. Brooke
    2/14/2013

    Really not sure. I have the first two books but have not had a chance to read them yet :(

    [Reply]

  14. Meghan Stith
    2/14/2013

    I don’t know! I have yet to read the book!
    Thanks for the giveaway!

    mestith at gmail dot com

    [Reply]

  15. Martha
    2/14/2013

    Team Linc!
    Martha recently posted..A Monster Calls by Patrick Ness and Siobhan DowdMy Profile

    [Reply]

  16. Raina
    2/14/2013

    Great review, MaryAnn! I haven’t heard of the series before, but now I want to read the book. Thanks for giveaway!
    Raina recently posted..V Follower Appreciation Giveaway! $50 GC & BookMy Profile

    [Reply]

  17. Team Lincoln all the way!! Phenoix is just too shady for me.
    Kristen @ My Bookish Fairy Tale recently posted..For The Love Of Swoon Giveaway HopMy Profile

    [Reply]

  18. Team Lincoln!! I used to be Team Phoenix all the way because I love the bad boy, but Phoenix is just to bad and has done some shady questionable things. Plus Lincoln is her soulmate, so he wins!!!

    [Reply]

  19. leannessf
    2/15/2013

    Hard to choose, but I think Lincoln!

    Thanks,
    Leanne

    [Reply]

  20. Sherry
    2/15/2013

    Team Lincoln.Thanks for the great giveaway.

    dragonkeep62(at)gmail(dot)com

    [Reply]

  21. Jaime Lester
    2/15/2013

    Team Linc. No doubt about it. Phoenix had his moments, but I think he is a total tool. He took advantage of her. He basically raped her. That is not okay. I think if he had never had sex with her, I may have liked him better. BUT I have not read Entice yet, so who knows. I think I am Team Linc until the end, though. He stole my heart

    [Reply]

  22. magan bagan
    2/15/2013

    Team Lincoln all the way.
    magan bagan recently posted..Sneak Peak: Awaken by Jaime GuerardMy Profile

    [Reply]

  23. Kelly L.
    2/18/2013

    Team Lincoln!
    Kelly L. recently posted..Book Review: Splintered – A.G. HowardMy Profile

    [Reply]

  24. Jenna
    2/19/2013

    Team Lincoln! (I heard he was the good one) Maybe I can get a chance to read it and figure out who I love best!
    Jenna_bearden_10152005 (at) yahoo (dot) com
    Jenna recently posted..Unglued DevotionalMy Profile

    [Reply]

  25. Kayla Prada
    2/20/2013

    Team Phoenix!! Thank you for the giveaway!!

    [Reply]

  26. Bonnie Hilligoss
    2/22/2013

    Loved the short story! I haven’t read Entice, but will, so I will go with Team Lincoln just from the blurb. Thanks for the giveaway!

    [Reply]

  27. Kristie M
    2/23/2013

    Team Lincoln!

    [Reply]

  28. Lisa Vazquezanzua
    2/24/2013

    I have to go with Team Lincoln. I just love this character in the story. I cannot wait to read the second book and find out more of what’s going on! Thank you for a chance to win your giveaway!

    [Reply]

  29. Kelly K
    2/26/2013

    I haven’t read anything from this series yet, but it sounds great! I’ve got it on my TBR list now thanks to your review! Thank you for the giveaway :)

    [Reply]

  30. Megan Conway
    2/28/2013

    LINCOLN!! I never trusted Phoenix.

    [Reply]

  31. Heather K.
    2/28/2013

    At this point, I’m team Lincoln but I reserve the right to change my mind! Lol Thanks so much for having the giveaway.:)

    [Reply]

  32. Grace Lo
    3/10/2013

    Team Lincoln through and through! Phoenix is slightly creepy to me . . .
    Grace Lo recently posted..Blog Tour/Review/Giveaway: Bewitched by Mark Jay HarrisMy Profile

    [Reply]

  33. Christina T
    3/13/2013

    Team Phoenix

    [Reply]

  34. Jolene A
    3/22/2013

    Phoenix!

    [Reply]

  35. Kristen Oh
    3/22/2013

    Can I be team both? But if id have to choose Id say Phoenix :)
    Kristen Oh recently posted..Feature Friday {59} Guilty pleasure as far as readingMy Profile

    [Reply]

  36. Darith L.
    3/22/2013

    Phoenix!

    [Reply]

  37. […] Little Library Muse YA Midnight Reads Chapter by Chapter […]

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