April 2, 2014

It Runs in the Family: To Kiss or Not to Kiss

My sister Melissa is back on the blog to be a (semi) regular reviewer starting this month! Mel reads a lot of paranormal YA, as well as NA novels, so she'll be posting about books that I might not necessarily read (or haven't gotten to just yet).

White Hot Kiss by Jennifer L. Armentrout
Series: The Dark Elements #1
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Publication Date: February 25, 2014
Source/Format: Bought || Paperback

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.

Scorching & different –two words I’d use to describe White Hot Kiss. With all the hype surrounding this new YA novel of hers, I definitely had some expectations. Although I wasn’t disappointed with what I read, I can’t say that it was my favorite either, considering how much I love the Lux & Covenant Series.

+- The Story: Centering on gargoyles, demons and Wardens, White Hot Kiss definitely has an interesting take on the paranormal. It’s something that I’ve never encountered before, which is probably what drew me in. I don’t know a lot about these creatures, but I could already sense danger from the very first page. And I’m sure you’d agree with me. It’s not just about the evil looming unexpectedly. There’s also something dangerous about trying to discover who you are in the course of all the mayhem and there’s that other thing - love. With Layla falling into both of those, it’s a rollercoaster ride that will keep you questioning everything – your loyalty to your “family” and to your heart.

+ Roth: There’s sweetness in evil. And remember, looks can be deceiving. Although White Hot Kiss is about Layla, I’d have to say that Roth is an equally interesting character. Not just because he claims to know all her secrets and not share most of them with us – which makes us want to throttle him, but also because he himself is questioning who he really is. There’s a constant debate of where his loyalty lies, and what happens at the end of the novel will still have you asking that same question: Who is Roth? The mystery around his character, together with Layla’s search for answers is what will fuel your curiosity. He can be that seriously sexy bad boy, tattooed, cunning, ab-tastic and all – and at the same time totally unlike the demon he is, with sensitivity and courage – even calling his snake tattoo “Bambi”. Roth can be quite the irony. There’s definitely more to him that meets the eye, and I for one want to know just what’s behind those honey-colored eyes.

+ Chemistry: When I said White Hot Kiss was scorching, I meant it. It’s surprising even to me, because I really didn’t expect to get emotionally tangled with gargoyles, demon or Wardens at the forefront. To be honest, they scared me, but after reading this book – I fear them in a good way. There’s intensity about the dangerous – and of course I mean Roth. How can someone so wrong, be so right? I think we’ve asked that question before, and Layla is no different. But she’s not just questioning him, but also herself – with Zayne also playing a big role in that great debate. He’s always been her “family” and she’s loved him since… well, forever. Now that has complicated written all over it.

+ Unforgettable Line: “I lost myself the moment I found you.”

The Lux & Covenant Series by Jennifer Armentrout are two that I would recommend in a heartbeat. If you haven’t already, both of them are certainly worth the read. I couldn’t put either of them down, for different reasons – but I’ll save that for another review. As for White Hot Kiss, I still have my reservations, but I can’t say I didn’t enjoy it. There’s the swoon-worthy romance (as expected) but also with JLA leaving us hanging as she usually does, with more questions than answers, that’s why I’ll definitely be picking up the next book.


  1. YAY! I really enjoyed this one!! :) (YOU NEED TO GET READING SOME JLA ALEXA!) Thumbs up to Melissa for knowing what's good for her. haha Anyway, I was nervous about this book because JLA's other series really won me over. Sometimes i wonder just how many good series can an author really put out without getting repetitive or flat. I was silly to be nervous. This story had the expected sexy tension between the main characters, but the whole gargoyle thing was definitely unique! I'm very excited to read the next book as soon as I can get my hands on it!

  2. Yes, that line!! Can't wait for the 2nd book!

    Kate @ Ex Libris


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