Lovin' los libros

A book blog dedicated to young adult and new adult novels

Release Day Launch: White Hot Kiss by Jennifer L. Armentrout {Review, Excerpt, +Giveaway}

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Happy release day to Jennifer L. Armentrout and White Hot Kiss!
Today I am excited to share my review, an excerpt, and an awesome giveaway with you all!


White Hot Kiss (The Dark Elements #1)
   by: Jennifer L. Armentrout

Publication Date: Feb. 25, 2014
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Genre: Paranormal
Age Group: Young Adult
Source: ARC provided by the publisher in exchange for a fair and honest review.
Page Count: 304 pages
Order Links: Amazon | B&N | Kobo | iTunes
My Rating: 5/5 stars

One kiss could be the last.

Seventeen-year-old Layla just wants to be normal. But with a kiss that kills anything with a soul, she's anything but normal. Half demon, half gargoyle, Layla has abilities no one else possesses.

Raised among the Wardens—a race of gargoyles tasked with hunting demons and keeping humanity safe—Layla tries to fit in, but that means hiding her own dark side from those she loves the most. Especially Zayne, the swoon-worthy, incredibly gorgeous and completely off-limits Warden she's crushed on since forever.

Then she meets Roth—a tattooed, sinfully hot demon who claims to know all her secrets. Layla knows she should stay away, but she's not sure she wants to—especially when that whole no-kissing thing isn't an issue, considering Roth has no soul.

But when Layla discovers she's the reason for the violent demon uprising, trusting Roth could not only ruin her chances with Zayne…it could brand her a traitor to her family. Worse yet, it could become a one-way ticket to the end of the world.

 
 
 
“I don’t think of Zayne that way!” 

She laughed. “What man-parts-loving female in this world doesn’t think of Zayne that way? I can barely keep myself breathing when I see him. All the guys in school have squishy waists. I can tell Zayne doesn’t. He’s the awesome sauce with extra sauce.”

That he was and he so didn’t have a squishy waist, but I tuned Stacey out at that point. I really did need to cram for this test and I also didn’t want my fantasies involving Zayne to occupy my mind right now. Especially after I’d woken up this morning, carefully tucked under the covers. The bed had smelled like him: sandalwood and crisp linen. 

“Oh, sweet baby Jesus in a manger,” Stacey murmured.

I clenched my jaw, cupping my hands over my ears. She jabbed me in the side with her elbow. At this rate I’d be covered in bruises before lunchtime.

“Our bio class just got a billion times more interesting. And hotter, lots and lots hotter. Holy mother, I want to have his babies. Not now of course, but definitely later. But I’d like to start practicing soon.”

The cell wall is a thick and rigid layer covering the plasma something, something plant cells… 

Stacey stiffened all of a sudden. “Oh my God, he’s coming—”

Composed of fat and sugar—

Something slender and shiny fell from who knew where, landing in the middle of Sam’s notes. Blinking tightly, it took me a couple of seconds to recognize the faded and half peeled Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles sticker covering the back of the silver cell phone. My heart slammed against my ribs. Gripping the edges of the notebook, I slowly lifted my gaze. Unnaturally beautiful golden eyes met mine.  

“You forgot this last night.”


 
I can't say I really had any doubts, but Jennifer L. Armentrout has done it again! Get ready to get sucked into her latest paranormal young adult series, The Dark Elements! I've always loved Jen's quick wit and sharp writing style- the woman just has a knack for drawing you into the world she has created and make you feel like you are right there along with the characters. I loved how realistic this novel was even though there are angels, demons, and gargoyles!
 
I am really glad I read Bitter Sweet Love first to get a feel for the Warden world and catch a glimpse of our main characters Layla, Roth, and Zayne. While Bitter Sweet Love follows Jasmine, a female Warden, we do get an idea of how Layla's life must be- being half Warden and half Demon. People fear the unknown and in Layla's case, she's seen by some as an abomination. When we first meet Layla in Bitter Sweet Love she is shy, but sweet and is friendly to Jasmine. However, Jasmine is afraid of her, which hurts Layla's feelings, as she is very sensitive to her nature.
 
I can't even imagine what life must be like for Layla. She is feared and hated by other Wardens and as a teenager, she can't even kiss a boy for fear of sucking out his soul. Still, there's a brightness to Layla and I couldn't help but adore her. She does come across as a bit naïve at times, but having been sheltered for most of her life, she is unsure of how to proceed, especially when it comes to her emotions. She cares deeply for her best friend Zayne and yet knows they can never be together.
 
Jen has really done it this time with the love interest. I honestly am still a bit torn over who I should love more, as I really loved both Zayne and Roth. Zayne genuinely cares for Layla and has always been there for her- to protect and defend her, as well as keep her company. The two have always been close, which is why it's easy to see why Layla would fall for him. Zayne was a bit difficult to read on his feelings for Layla- were they just brotherly or something more? While not a lot happens on that front, I do feel like we're going to see some more development in the next book in the series. Zayne definitely had his moments that frustrated me though. As a male Warden, it is his duty to mate with another female Warden in order to keep the Warden population from dying out. Jasmine's sister Danika has always had her eye on Zayne, and Zayne's father Abbott, believes them to be a good match. Layla is hurt by the time that Zayne is spending with Danika instead of her and really feels wounded when he doesn't make time for her. I do feel Zayne treated Layla a bit like glass and took the big brother routine a little bit further than necessary. He dismissed her as being childish a few times, and I was a bit peeved by that, as I felt he was treating her like a child, making her seem more childish than she really was.  
 
Meeting Roth, an Upper Level Demon, changes everything for Layla. Meeting him not only sets everything into motion about her history and heritage, but it also really makes her question everything she's been raised to believe. Suddenly the lines between good and evil aren't so black and white and Layla has some difficult decisions to make in regards to her half Warden/half Demon self.
 
Roth is one sexy, badass demon. I wasn't sure if I would like him at first with all his cockiness and bad boy swagger, but he really ended up surprising me in the end. There is definitely more to Roth than meets the eye and I actually loved seeing him and Layla interact. He really makes her think about her situation and seeing her realize the depth of his character is definitely one of my favorite parts. She doesn't have to hide who she is around Roth and where she feels uncomfortable and even ashamed with the Wardens, she feels free when she's with him. I hated how many insecurities Layla had about herself, which is why I liked seeing her completely at ease with Roth. Since he is a demon, she also doesn't have to worry about taking his soul either. This definitely becomes a huge point in the novel, as Layla finds herself torn between what she feels and what she knows she shouldn't.
 
Roth and Layla have some serious chemistry together and I ended up liking the way their relationship developed. Roth definitely won me over with his humor, charm, and how he cared for Layla. He doesn't keep her in the dark or try to shelter her from the truth. She respects him for that and I will just say there is a moment where if you were unsure of Roth before- you won't be afterwards.
 
Overall, Jennifer has created another well-thought out series and I have always been fascinated by heaven and hell, angels and demons, and the balance that must be maintained between the two. You will immediately be drawn into Layla's world and it's definitely a fast-paced ride to the end! I cannot wait to pick up Stone Cold Touch and see what's next for Layla!
 
Don't miss the prequel novella Bitter Sweet Love!
 

# 1 NEW YORK TIMES and USA TODAY Bestselling author Jennifer lives in Martinsburg, West Virginia. All the rumors you’ve heard about her state aren’t true. When she’s not hard at work writing. she spends her time reading, working out, watching really bad zombie movies, pretending to write, and hanging out with her husband and her Jack Russell Loki.
Her dreams of becoming an author started in algebra class, where she spent most of her time writing short stories….which explains her dismal grades in math. Jennifer writes young adult paranormal, science fiction, fantasy, and contemporary romance. She is published with Spencer Hill Press, Entangled Teen and Brazen, Disney/Hyperion and Harlequin Teen. Her book Obsidian has been optioned for a major motion picture and her Covenant Series has been optioned for TV.

She also writes adult and New Adult romance under the name J. Lynn. She is published by Entangled Brazen and HarperCollins.
 
 
 
 
 
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12 comments

  1. My favorite type of paranormal? Creatures or? Those would definetly be vampires. Thanks for the giveaway :)

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  2. Roth! The answer is always Roth! I fell hard for him. I liked Zayne too, but he aggravated me at times and I didn't like how he treated Layla in some cases... and I'll just say this it took me a while to forgive one certain forgetful moment from him! I need Stone Cold Touch like now! Great review!

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    1. AH. Ok Teresa, you're right. It is Roth. But I guess I don't want to give in! I like my good guys! But you're right. Zayne made me mad and that forgetful moment wrecked my heart. I cannot wait for SCT!

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  3. Ugh, this cluffie sucked! In a good way, but man the wait for book two is gonna kill me.
    I loved Roth. Zayne was awesome too but I don't think he got a fair chance. Plus, the fact that I don't see how they can ever be together kind of makes it hard to root for them. Glad you liked this one!

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    1. Yes! It was a cliffie, but not as bad as it could have been. I can't wait for Book 2, but I'm doing okay. LOL. I agree- I don't think Zayne had a chance either. And I agree- they won't unless something crazy happens. Which is totally possible.

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  4. Absolutely DYING to read this one! Cannot wait for the mail man to bring it to me this week. It's going to be a loooong wait for it sadly didn't fall under release day shipping for me! Love JLA and her work! Glad to hear this one was amazing despite this cliffhanger I am hearing about, but I will hopefully live.

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    1. I can't wait for you to read it Jessica! I hope you enjoy it as much as I did! And I hope the mail man came!!!

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  5. AH! Your review!! I wanna read this one now!! But sadly I can't, not until I finish the book I'm currently reading then I'll pick this bad boy up!! *wiggles eyebrows* Your amazing review made me excited to see where the story is now after the Novella, and to really get to meet the characters. Oh how I am soo ready to meet some of them :D

    Great review!

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    1. I can't wait for you to read this girl! I definitely need to know what you thought of it!!!

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  6. "Oh, sweet baby Jesus in a manger" <-- She got that right! ;) I have this one downloaded but haven't read it yet. I'm a big fan of JLA and of angels and demons stories. I'm thrilled that you loved this, Jessica! Thanks for an incredible review and for sharing that teaser. ;)

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    1. Hahaha! I hope you love this too Brandee! I think you will though! :)

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