ARC Review: City in Embers – Stacey Marie Brown


city in embers cover.jpg

Zoey Daniels has been tossed from foster home to foster home, where she grows up fast and tough. When she is placed in her “last-chance” home, she finds a reason to stay and turn her life around: her foster sister, Lexie, who is paralyzed and confined to a wheelchair. Zoey will do anything to keep her safe. After high school, Zoey is hired by a special government agency, the Department of Molecular Genetics (DMG), where she meets the other reason to remain: Daniel, her co-worker. The man she loves.

But there is something unique about Zoey. She can see fae. Because of this, the DMG hires her to work as a Collector: catching, researching, testing, and using the fae to save human lives. The work never registers on her sympathy radar. She was raised to think of fae as beasts that feed on humans and want to destroy them. (cont. on Goodreads)

I received an eARC edition of this novel courtesy of Mark My Words Publicity via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

This was actually a really solid book compared to some of my other summer reads, and I’m really glad to say that it wasn’t a disappointment… With action, fairies, hunters, weird and dangerous associations, and a kick ass heroine I can safely say that I thoroughly enjoyed this particular title.

I probably shouldn’t admit the fact that one of the only reasons I requested this book was because of the beautiful cover, the colour and the way the book’s subjects were presented truly drew me into reading it. I  was nearly mesmerised by the patterns on (what I assume is) Ryker’s back contrasted by Zoey’s shadow.

Speaking of the devil, Zoey was a great protagonist, I liked her ‘voice’ and of course the author’s well thought out descriptive style only added to that. At no point did she turn into a great big pile of “oh no, what shall I dooooooooo, I’m such a poorly girl, someone come and save me…..” which I really appreciated because she had every reason to along the course of the novel, but yet chose to move past everything that happened and carry on trying to do her job as it should be done.

fight the fairies.gif

I apologise  I will not apologise for the use of this semi-relevant gif in this situation. 

I don’t know what it is about side-kicks in books but yet again, much alike other similar books, I absolutely loved Sprig and have to say he was probably my favourite character despite playing a seemingly small part in the story. I needed more of him…. Like a whole novel worth if it is possible, please?

The romance was actually well written. The absence of my number one foe: insta-love meant I got to really enjoy the characters’ chemistry and I cannot wait to see where the story goes in the next book. To be fair, I preferred Zoey’s second love interest of the novel much more than the first which, if I’m being perfectly honest, made me largely uncomfortable despite maybe not being a totally messed up match… I just didn’t buy it.

One of the things that irked me slightly was how slow the beginning of this book was. But thankfully it got better and I was flying through the pages until I read the whole thing in 3 hours which I didn’t expect to do upon finding and requesting the novel.

My Rating: 4/5 Stars

“I missed Starbucks. There were no caramel flavoring or whipped cream options in purgatory.”



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