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Broken Destiny #1

The Beautiful Ashes

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Sometimes, falling in love really is the end of the world... don’t miss this fan-favorite tale from New York Times bestselling author Jeaniene Frost.

Ivy has always seen things that she cannot explain. Strange things. Otherworldly things. But when her sister goes missing, Ivy discovers the truth is far worse--her hallucinations are real, and her sister is imprisoned in a realm beyond Ivy’s reach. The one person who can help her is the dangerously attractive rebel who’s bound by an ancient legacy to betray her.

The fate Adrian has fought to escape is here - but he never expected the burning need he feels for Ivy. With destiny on one side and desire on the other, Adrian must help Ivy search for the powerful relic that can save her sister. Yet he knows what Ivy doesn’t: the truth about her own destiny, and a war that could destroy the world. Sooner or later, it will be Ivy on one side, Adrian on the other, and nothing but ashes in between...

Originally published in 2014

384 pages, ebook

First published August 26, 2014

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About the author

Jeaniene Frost

54 books26.2k followers
Jeaniene Frost is the New York Times, USA Today, and international bestselling author of the Night Huntress series, the Night Prince series, the Broken Destiny series, and the Night Rebel series. To date, foreign rights for her novels have sold to twenty different countries. Jeaniene lives in Maryland with her husband Matthew, who long ago accepted that she rarely cooks and always sleeps in on the weekends. Aside from writing, Jeaniene enjoys reading, poetry, watching movies with her husband, exploring old cemeteries, spelunking and traveling – by car. Airplanes, children, and cook books frighten her.

For information on Jeaniene's books, book trailers, free reading, contests, creature mythology, and more, please visit: www.jeanienefrost.com

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Displaying 1 - 30 of 1,380 reviews
Profile Image for Emily May.
1,963 reviews294k followers
September 2, 2014
“If I was ever kidnapped again, it had better be by an old, ugly guy. That would be less confusing to my emotions.”

Three words: HOT. GUY. SYNDROME.

If you've read a few books from the paranormal romance genre over the last few years - try Twilight, Hush Hush, Obsidian, The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer, for example - then I'm sure you recognise the symptoms of this disease. Instaobsession. Reckless stupidity. Douchebaggery excused by smoldering eyes and sexy smile. Nauseatingly endless descriptions of male hotness. This book is so badly infected with HGS that I'll be surprised if anyone can take it seriously.

I skimmed towards the end, just because I felt the need to finish, but this was so not what I expected from Jeaniene Frost. But, I suppose when you consider the derivative feel of her other books, maybe it isn't that surprising. I read and loved (at least in the beginning) her Night Huntress series because it filled the gaping hole left by my beloved Buffy the Vampire Slayer. And, let's face it, I just really loved to fangirl over Spike Bones. Despite the series' many shortcomings, it was entertaining, sexy and very funny. The characters were not completely stupid.

Too bad that cannot be said for Ivy.

“I knew I should turn around, open the door and run, preferably while screaming. That was the only logical response, but I stood there, somehow unafraid of my intruder.”

Ivy is so stupid that she's like one of those comedy sketches about stupid people who run around waving their hands like idiots. The main love interest in this book is a standard PNR asshole; in other words, his behaviour is supposedly excused by the fact that he is HOT. And Ivy just blames her ovaries for her lack of brain functionality.

“He laughed, the deep, masculine rumble teasing something inside me that was too stupid to realize kidnappers were off-limits.”

Yes, your eyes are not deceiving you. Adrian is a guy who literally KIDNAPS the main character, holds her against her will, and ensures she can't escape by using rapey antics like shoving his leg between her thighs. And, of course, any initial indignation Ivy feels about this sexual assault is quickly kicked in the brain cells by her seriously overactive hormones. I don't know if this girl has a brain but I do know that it's definitely not the thing that's controlling her actions.

“He came toward me, and my heart started to hammer. Why hadn’t I left when I had the chance? And why wasn’t I screaming for help right now?”

Exactly! Why aren't you running for the hills, Ivy? I swear she gives new meaning to the word "moron".

On top of this, Frost just hasn't brought anything new to the table. The main problem is that the whole angels and demons lore has been done SO MANY times. You have to be working with some fabulous new material if you want to tackle this overcrowded arena of mythology. Even when I sneaked a peek past all the dumb in the central romance, the story wasn't interesting enough. Same old ideas, same old plain MC who never gets interest from hot guys but suddenly meets one of the same old pieces of perfection (i.e. rapey creeps):

“Strong brows, a straight nose, high cheekbones and a sensual mouth made up a face that was striking enough to adorn billboards.”

I don't know about you, but I am so tired of these flawless billboard dudes. I can even stomach a bit of evil if they have some dimension and personality. Give me a guy whose physical appearance doesn't sound like all the others... give me a guy whose physical description comes with a more detailed description of his personality... damn it, give me an ugly guy with half his face wasting away like Erik from Phantom of the Opera!

And give me a "heroine" who isn't a complete idiot. I'm going to finish with my favourite quote from the book. It's my favourite because it made me snort with laughter:

“Now that my reckless rage had passed, I realized how stupid I’d been.”

Ivy, you liar. You have absolutely no idea how stupid you've been.

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Profile Image for Jennifer Armentrout.
Author 129 books116k followers
May 21, 2014
I just finished The Beautiful Ashes by Jeaniene Frost and Oh my God, guys. Between the romance (ADRIAN!!!), the banter, and the freaking world building I want to marry this book. It comes out August 26th. This is totally pre-order worthy.
Profile Image for Carol [Goodreads Addict].
2,354 reviews24.7k followers
November 11, 2015
The Beautiful Ashes by Jeaniene Frost is book one in the Broken Destiny series. This is my first book by Ms. Frost and I am yelling at myself wondering why that is so. This book was fantastic. There was non-stop suspense filled action right from the start. And the build up of a love story that has the makings of a sigh worthy devotion, if they can live through everything they are dealt!

Ivy hasn’t had the easiest of childhoods. She grew up believing she was crazy. She had visions of parallel realms of existence. It didn’t take her long when she was a child to figure out she was the only one seeing these things. Her adoptive parents took her to Dr. after Dr. Her one true supporter and best friend was her sister Jasmine.

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Ivy has just lost her parents in a horrible car accident in Bennington, Vermont. Then, her sister disappears, vanishes, in the same town. As Ivy is searching for her sister, she finds herself in trouble and fighting for her life. Of course she needs a handsome, hunky rescuer and she is rewarded with Adrian. Adrian acts anything but happy, though, to be rescuing her. And talk about cryptic. He won’t answer any of her questions. The one thing that is evident right from the start is that there is something between them. The first time they touch there is an electrical spark. Is it just natural attraction, or is it destiny that binds them to one another?

“Jasmine needed me, and Adrian believed in me. I wouldn't fail either of them. I couldn't."

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Ivy eventually learns that she and Adrian are descendants, the last in their lines from biblical times. They both posses powers beyond normal humans. Ivy possesses a special ability needed to find a hallowed weapon that will defeat the demons that rule the realms she has had visions of since she was little. The same demons that are now holding her sister prisoner.

“I was about to die or about to kick some serious ass, but either way, I’d be doing it for Adrian. Prophecies, destinies…they weren’t why I was here. He was, and in life or in death, I wasn’t going to fail him again.”

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Adrian is doing everything possible to fight his attraction to Ivy. He knows that he will end up hurting her. That his destiny is to betray her and he knows that is how this will end. But he needed her and she needed him, for now. The question was, would he have the strength to deny himself the love Ivy is offering him.

“Whether by destiny or by choice, neither of us could completely walk away from the other. Not yet."

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Together, Ivy and Adrian fight demons, minions, hell hounds and so many other dangers. They are constantly fighting their attraction to each other but at the same time, trying to figure out if they can trust one another. This book isn’t without humor. Zach, who is sort of pulling all the strings here, has the ability to disguise Ivy as they search for Jasmine and the weapon. The disguises are pretty hilarious. I was constantly wondering about Zach’s motives, as was Ivy. I still haven’t figured out if he is good or bad.

"Let's get the bondage lizard party started, then," I finally said, opening my eyes. Like it or not, this was my life, so I had to make the best of it."

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Of course, there is a cliff hanger. I will most definitely be continuing on with this series. The wait will be torture. I want to say thank you to Jeaniene Frost, NetGalley, and Harlequin for giving me the opportunity to read this book.

“Only light can defeat darkness. Loving you is his light, Ivy. Without it, he was doomed to fail, but with it, his fate is truly in his own hands.”
Profile Image for Anne.
3,918 reviews69.3k followers
November 5, 2014
So. I didn't love it.
Basically, you have the Angel/Demon thing going on. And, unfortunately, those stories aren't my favorite. I'm not saying I never like them, but I sort of groan inwardly when I realize that's what the story is about.

I'm not telling anyone not to read it, but it just wasn't for me.
There was never actually a point in this book where I was really interested in what was happening, or what would happen.
I've been a Frost fan for years, and she one of the few writers that dips into the PNR genre without bothering me.
And by PNR, I mean the heroine has a moment when her WOMB CLENCHES from desire...
Can I ask a question?
Have any of you ladies ever experienced a clenching womb?
Outside of labor and delivery, I mean.
Am I doing something wrong? Is the clenching womb some kind of Big-Time 'experience' that I need to add to my bucket list?
Or is womb just a euphemism for something else?
*wink, wink, nudge, nudge*
If so, then I'm good...

Anyhoo, for some reason, this story just felt like it was kinda Paint By Numbers.
I'm not saying she phoned it in, but I couldn't connect with the characters or the plot.
Was this an attempt at the New Adult market? I'm assuming yes, but I can't say that for sure.
The heroine was a 20something idiot, who has powers she doesn't understand. The hero is a 150something idiot, who did the old HidingMySpookyPastSins thing for waaaaaaaay too long.
There's a FATE vs CHOICE storyline.
And there's an Angel...
Who plays the role of the I'mNotTellingYouShitForYourOwnGood guy.
There's nothing really Wrong with it, I've just read it all before.

Ok, and speaking of I've read it before...
I'm sick to death of these guys like Adrian swooping in to some girl's life, and 'kidnapping' them for their own good.
I mean, if the stupid girl won't listen to you after you explain that you're there to save her life?
Toss her ass in the trunk.
But do us all the courtesy of at least trying to explain.
Showing up unannounced in someone's room, and cryptically mocking them while shrouded in darkness?
Well, I'm just thinking that shouldn't be Plan A.

Profile Image for Michelle, the Bookshelf Stalker.
596 reviews371 followers
June 22, 2014
This was a book that had so much potential and then died. Too bad. I think Frost didn't know what she wanted to write, a YA novel, a "New Adult" book or an adult novel. Thus, she satisfied no one. It's just Blah Barbie gone badass with a side of information overload and a hunk of man/boy beef on the side.
Profile Image for Madison Warner Fairbanks.
2,238 reviews304 followers
September 18, 2022
The Beautiful Ashes by Jeaniene Frost
Broken Destiny book 1. Paranormal NA romance.
Ivy is determined to rescue her sister. Even if that means going into the demon world.

In this demon world there is no sun. A dark premise, with humans as slaves. Or worse, as meat. Ivy and Adrian work well together as they try to find her sister and flirt a bit when they can. But it’s a dangerous world and not as simple to understand. I admired Ivy’s protective instincts to try to help anyone she could from harm.
I can’t wait as to find out what happens next.
May 27, 2020

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DNF @ 10%

Life is too short to read bad books. That's why I've decided that if I'm not into a book, I'm just not going to push myself through it. I feel like the reasons a book makes you throw in the towel early on are valid enough to write a review. Depending on whether it's a "me" thing or a "book" thing, the book will get 1-2 stars.

In the case of THE BEAUTIFUL ASHES, I don't think it's a "me" thing; I think it was the book. Does the title refer to my hopes, as they burn into a crisp only to flutter away on the breeze? I'm honestly surprised that this TSTL Gumbo™ was written by Jeanine Frost, an author whose works I genuinely prize as much as Jenny Trout's or Ilona Andrews's. This was like a hallmark to all those insipid YA books that were hot on TWILIGHT's heels to see who could write the most spineless, instalovey hot mess ever.

Our heroine sees things that shouldn't be there, kind of like Mac from Karen Marie Moning's series. Everyone thought it was an undiagnosed mental health issue but now it seems like she might actually be seeing something... real. Her parents just died, and when she's kidnapped by the Obligatory Hot Guy Love Interest™, her first thought is literally just "This sucks! Oh well! At least he's hot!" Like, this is unfazable, but not on a kick-butt level-- more like a "I am a single-celled amoeba sluicing my way to the edge of death!" level. She acts like a pre-programmed robot who has been taught to only do the stupid thing.

After getting to 10% of non-stop stupid decisions and endless descriptions of OHGLI™ (named Adrian) and how hot he was, I was D-O-N-E. I'm really sad I had to do this because Frost is usually such a winner for me, but I guess everyone has that One Book that isn't as good as the others, and for Frost, this one seems to be hers. If you're curious about it, it's only $1.99 in the Kindle store right now (that was how I got suckered in), but I'd honestly recommend sticking with her vampire crew instead.

1 to 1.5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Angela.
3,198 reviews368 followers
February 22, 2016
22 February 2016: $0.99 on Kindle

22 October 2015: $1.99 on Kindle
8 June 2015: $4.99 on Kindle

The Beautiful Ashes opens right in the thick of things. Ivy is traveling to find her sister, who has been missing for a couple of weeks. She's determined to find her, and being all alone in the world the cost doesn't matter. To be honest, I found Ivy a little contradictory - and I think I mean that in a good way. She would feel like this eminently strong character one moment, and then like she was going to break the next. It's believable that that's how one would react to what she's dealing with, but at the same time I rolled my eyes a few times. Finding out her hallucinations are real and out to get her ... I'd be more than a little freaked.

Enter Adrian. Sexy, enigmatic, and brooding. Obviously, he's got some issues. Which makes him all the more interesting. What I liked was that he had real reasons to have issues - not some minor plot contrivance, but a very real thing. I also really liked that he wasn't hot and cold with Ivy, at least not until he knew who she was; more specifically, who she was to him. Then he legitimately tried to back off. It was obvious that it was for a good reason, so I was more intrigued with what the reason was than irritated. I liked Adrian, mostly, except for the secrets thing I'll get to later.

Ivy and Adrian have this definite pull towards each other, partly supernatural and partly plain ole' attraction. I'm not sure I entirely buy their professions of love at the end, especially with how Ivy reacts in the epilogue (which frustrated me, but that's a whole 'nother can of worms), but I believe there's room for it to become that in the next two books.

What did irritate me was the constant use of 'keep the MC in the dark.' And it's used a LOT. Fortunately, Jeaniene Frost doesn't follow most conventions of having the main character end up in a life or death situation that could have been prevented if only she'd known. I think part of my problem was that I was SO waiting for that to happen that I was irritated every time Adrian, et al, wouldn't tell her something despite her asking over and over again. It never came to that, and they actually did dole out information, eventually. I think my problem then became that it felt like an authorial plot device to keep information from the reader. Either way, it kept me from totally immersing myself in the story.

I did find the premise and plot completely interesting, though I have to admit that at times I was reminded quite a bit of the television show Supernatural. Granted there was no Sam and Dean, but there was a beloved car (Challenger instead of Impala), filled with weapons in the trunk, angels vs. demons, and a few other things that could be spoilery. It wasn't horribly overt, but I did see the similarities. With the revelations at the end, I'm looking forward to seeing where Jeaniene Frost takes this next. Given that I only thought the first Cat and Bones book was 'okay,' but loved the subsequent ones, I'm definitely excited to how she ramps up the stakes. Also, more gargoyle, please.

I liked it, but didn't love it. Given that I only thought the first Cat & Bones book was 'okay,' I'm definitely looking forward to where JF takes us next.

Full review to come.
Profile Image for Rachel  L.
1,828 reviews2,187 followers
August 5, 2015
4 action packed stars!

“You’re the light I can never have...and I’m the darkness you’ll never succumb to.”

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It's no secret that I absolutely adore Jeaniene Frost, and with the conclusion of the Night Huntress series, I was pretty darn excited to see her publishing a new series.

Bring in The Beautiful Ashes , wildly different from her other books, it's the story of Ivy, a young college girl searching for her sister. After being attacked at the hotel where her sister went missing, a hunky and mysterious guy named Adrian comes to her rescue... and then takes Ivy against her will.

“Beauty fades, but Evil Bitch is forever.”

Turns out that Ivy is a key player in the fight between good and evil, and in order to save her sister from an alternate demon realm, Ivy must help Adrian and an Archon named Zach find a hidden weapon that kills demons. Sounds complicated, no? Well get this, Adrian's bloodline has a long history of betraying Ivy's bloodline. With a mounting sexual tension between the two of them, who can Ivy trust to get her sister back?

"Even if you didn't have that bloodline, I'd still believe in you Ivy."

I thoroughly enjoyed this book, I think Ms. Frost did a great job showing her writing talents outside the Night Huntress realm.

"Whether by destiny or by choice, neither of us could completely walk away from the other.
Not yet."

OH MY GOD the world-building!!! The demon realm totally creeped and skeezed me out. I literally was shuddering at some of the descriptions. This is what I imagined some of the less gross parts to look like:

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The chemistry between Ivy and Adrian was HOT. Those two exploded on the pages and I am super excited to where things may lead in the next installments.

"Adrian wasn't just damaged goods, he was deranged goods, and coming from someone with a history of psychosis, that was saying something."

The reason it's not a 5 star book for me? I had a little trouble getting into the book. Part of it was it jumped in almost too quickly with the action and that was a bit disconcerting. The other part is not the author's fault at all, but this book made me want to go back and reread Halfway to the Grave and I literally had to stop myself from pulling it off my bookshelf. Otherwise, I thought this was a fantastic book.

"Dreams were beautiful things to have, weren't they?"
Profile Image for Carole (Carole's Random Life).
1,725 reviews465 followers
April 6, 2016
This review can also be found at Carole's Random Life

This was kind of meh for me. I didn't hate it or anything but I didn't love it either. This story honestly just didn't do a whole lot for me which makes me a little sad. I feel like this book should have been incredibly exciting based on the blurb....ancient legacies, visions of strange realms, powerful relics...how can that be anything but exciting? I was never pulled into the story and could always easily set it aside but I did think it had some high points.

The basic plot was promising and things were going on from the very beginning of the story. Ivy has had hallucinations her whole life. She has seen doctors and has taken medication to control the her visions. But it turns out that what she sees is real. She is actually seeing the demon realm and has a few abilities that she didn't even know about.

We are soon introduced to Adrian. He seems to know what is going on but doesn't necessarily feel the need to share what he knows with Ivy. Ivy isn't even sure which side Adrian is on and can't completely trust him. I never had a great feel for him to be honest. We know he is hot based on Ivy's descriptions but he is so selective on what he shares with her I never could tell what was real. He is a lot more skilled at handling the demon realm than Ivy could even dream of being.

Ivy is kept in the dark about a lot of things in this book. Unfortunately, since the book is told from Ivy's point of view so is the reader. Over and over in the story we would learn that what we thought was true wasn't. It became somewhat tiring. I don't mind a few surprises but please give me something to build on. I didn't feel the chemistry between Ivy and Adrian that should have been there either so the book romance didn't do a lot for me either.

I liked the narration for the story. Tavia Gilbert does a great job with the different characters in the story. I could always tell who was speaking as I listened to the story. Ivy was full of emotions and I thought that the narrator did a great job with portraying all of them. I would definitely listen to other audiobooks from this narrator.

At this point, I am really not sure if I will continue with this series or not. I have found that the first book in a new series is often not quite as good as subsequent installments. I liked enough about this one that I may give the second book a try before giving up on the series completely. I generally love everything Jeaniene Frost writes so it is hard to give up too quickly.

Initial Thoughts
So this book was just kind of Meh for me. It really should have been exciting but I just wasn't feeling it. I have to say that I am a bit disappointed especially considering how much I love The Night Huntress series. Oh well.
Profile Image for Didi.
865 reviews288 followers
Shelved as 'dnf'
August 31, 2014

As I write this review, I hang my head in pitiful SHAME.

JF is one of my favorite authors, she's written incredible stuff, like The Night Huntress and The Night Prince series. Loved those, but oh, God...not this! I don't know who I'm more angry at: myself, for failing to give this book time to sit and see what others said about it, or at the author, for writing a plot I dislike tremendously.

I'm angry at myself.

I hate, cannot stand angels vs. demons story lines( this was never mentioned in the synopsis). I'm putting that out there so anyone planning on reading this knows the score. This is a plot I avoid like the plague. Anytime I've given in and succumbed to reading about angels/demons, I've been utterly dissatisfied. These stories tend to verge on religious rhetoric and twist things around to sound original and different. I like to keep my religion separate from my love for reading. I read to escape, jump into a world unlike my own.

But even aside from that, JF's usual spunk and effortless writing style wasn't present here. Something was missing, the book couldn't hold my attention. The story started out fine but as things started being revealed I felt like I missed a few non-existent chapters. It felt like the book started in the middle. There was minimal groundwork, things just went...bang! And I was left wondering if I had missed something. The connection between Adrian and Ivy felt forced. At the 40% mark he was almost professing emotion akin to a much longer relationship, while it had only been a few days. There was minimal emotional growth making me feel their attraction to one another was lust based only, but we're told differently.

Anyways, I couldn't continue and it breaks my heart. I've dnf'd more books--only 4 mind you--in the last 6 months then I've EVER in the years I've enjoyed reading. Why?? I don't know. Is the quality of what I've read lately sub-par? Or is it me? Maybe a combo of both. I honestly think that as I read and grow into what I love I inadvertently lower my tolerance for everything else. Anyways, I'm done feeling sorry for myself, lol. If you're a fan of JF or even a lover of the angel/demon story line, you may like this more than I did. I just expected more from such a talented author.
Profile Image for ♥Rachel♥.
1,855 reviews846 followers
September 12, 2014
DNF at 58%

I just can't read this anymore. I have no patience for the doomed, forbidden romance that I've had zero feelings for. Instant attraction can work for me, but it just doesn't here.

This feels like more of a YA read than an adult. Ivy comes off more like a fifteen-year-old than the twenty years she's supposed to be. To be fair, my impression may have been tainted by starting with the audio version which I had to stop listening to. The narrator made Ivy sound shrilly which is hardly an appealing quality in a heroine. I don't recommend the audio version at all.

I switched to reading instead but I still couldn't get into this story. I wish I swooned over Adrian, but his withholding of information and keeping of secrets made it impossible to connect with him.

My feelings could be due to my reading mood, so check out other reviews before making your decision to read this story.
Profile Image for Jonetta.
2,205 reviews924 followers
August 24, 2014
Originally posted on The Book Nympho

Quick summary
Ivy begins the story in Bennington, Vermont, the last location of her sister, Jasmine, before she went missing. As she checks out one of the town's Bed & Breakfast inns, what she thought was a hallucination turns out to be real. See, Ivy's had these visions all of her life and was told they were due to a brain disorder. Now she knows they are real after meeting a hunk named Adrian who seems to know a lot more about her than Ivy knows about herself. And, he's a bit other worldly himself. The race to find her sister is the catalyst for everything that happens going forward.

The mythology
There's a mix of religious theology, mythology and fantasy that involves demons and "others from the light" that seems to work here. I'm not normally a fan of demon stories (didn't know they'd be here) but Frost's dark beings are created in a way that makes more sense to me. They look like what you'd think those from dark elements would and they behave accordingly. You can tell the bad guys from everyone else. I also liked the connection to biblical history as it gave me a chance to deduce some things on my own. I needed the help as much as Ivy did.

The world building
Parallel realms are nothing new but Frost added what I felt were some unique elements that made the story more complex, interesting and suspenseful. I don't want to share too much as these things are revealed throughout the book, which made everything easier to digest. I didn't have to capture everything at once and it didn't bog down the story. Don't get me wrong, however...there's quite a bit to take in.

I enjoyed Ivy. There's a lot about her that reminds me of Mac without the initial TSTL (Too Stupid To Live) factor. She uses her brain to figure out stuff she's confronting and doesn't waste time in denial. Ivy gets more right than she gets wrong.

I hate to continue the Fever series comparisons but Adrian reminded me a LOT of Barrons. Not in how he looked and that sort of thing but in all that mystery he was shrouded in. I, along with Ivy, didn't know what he was, the nature of his secrets and why he felt the need to hide all that stuff. And, he has that alpha male thing going but doesn't wear it like out-of-control testosterone.

The romance?
Ivy and Adrian had instant chemistry but did a dance throughout the story for really good reasons. It works here but be prepared to have this play out beyond this first book. It worked perfectly with the story.

Bottom line summary
The action starts literally from the first page and almost never lets up. Ivy and Adrian are interesting individually, as a team and as a couple. The romance is the weak aspect but it's in tandem with what's going on. The supporting characters are really, really good and I like the mythology and the created world. It's not perfect but I rolled through the book. I'm in for the next in the series.

(I received an ARC from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review)
Profile Image for Patrycja.
639 reviews3,802 followers
August 31, 2014
2 stars

*Shakes head in shame*

I cannot handle the thought of not loving it with all my heart. I just can't :( Yghhh. Review to follow, when I will make peace with myself.
Profile Image for Karla.
986 reviews1,094 followers
October 27, 2014

3.5 Stars! An innovative world, snarky fun characters, and Jeaniene Frost’s distinctive storytelling makes The Beautiful Ashes an entertaining start to the Broken Destiny series!

I was hot to get my hands on The Beautiful Ashes and was hoping to get that all consuming feeling I got when I first read Halfway to the Grave, my favorite read by this author. While while I enjoyed The Beautiful Ashes, the angelic and demonic entities, the fight to save humanity story line, it didn’t quite grab me to the point of distraction. It’s hard not to make the comparison, and probably not fair to the author, but it almost can’t be helped.

Ivy is a feisty kick-ass heroine, and it's her first person account that tells the tale in The Beautiful Ashes. Adrian is a sarcastic smoldering hottie hero, and he bands together with Ivy to fight the evil villains. They also wage war on their growing attraction to each other, which made for some very amusing moments. Ivy's take on her sticky situation, impending doom and wandering thoughts about Adrian, had me laughing out loud. These two never fully act on their impulses, but I'm hoping as the series moves forward that they will move forward too!

The plot was fun and creative, there was some unique world building, delicious devious characters, charming good guys, unusual creatures, and witty dialogue. While some of the storyline wraps up, there is much more to overcome and resolve. Ivy and Adrian are no Cat and Bones, but they do have promise, and their relationship and plight fascinated me enough that I have the need to know where their journey is headed. So, I'm looking forward to the next book in the series and will step through the portal again to see what fate has in store for Ivy and Adrian!

*A copy of the book was provided in exchange for an honest review*
Profile Image for Ash Wednesday.
441 reviews524 followers
September 11, 2014

Something about the world building made this story feel like a reworked, re-mastered, less charming Fever series to me. Not sure if that's a good thing or a bad thing, but I was mostly lukewarm to Darkfever, thus tipping the scales towards the bad for me.

Review, hopefully in less time than it took me to finish this.
Profile Image for Carmel (Rabid Reads).
706 reviews381 followers
August 22, 2014
Reviewed by: Rabid Reads.

Reading this book was a foregone conclusion for me because, well, it’s Jeaniene Frost, and that pretty much says it all in my opinion. I even skimmed the blurb which I NEVER do because New Adult isn’t really my genre, and I wanted to make sure that I knew what I was getting in to. Unfortunately the synopsis is rather vague, and I didn’t realize that this story was actually about Heaven & Hell until I had reached the point of no return. Angels are by far my least favourite supe, so THE BEAUTIFUL ASHES’ saving grace was the fact that it revolved mostly around demons, and again… it’s Jeaniene Frost. I’d even go so far as to say that it’s a NA version of SUPERNATURAL—the protagonists are driving around in a black car (’68 Challenger) with an arsenal of weapons in the trunk searching for a special Colt slingshot. Now, I’m not claiming that Adrian is hotter than Dean Winchester because that would be a bold faced lie, but the world, characters, and writing were excellent, as always because, yup—Jeaniene Frost.

The very foundation of the BROKEN DESTINY universe is in itself somewhat of a spoiler, and although I’m sure that there will be plenty of reviewers who’ll spill the beans, I won’t be one of them. So, please excuse my vagueness, but I loved how the author selected a specific religious story, and built her mythology around it. One of my main problems with ‘angel books’ is the whole Heaven vs. Hell plot line; it doesn’t matter if it’s vampires, werewolves, or witches because in the end it always comes down to good fighting evil. And, don’t get me wrong, that is ultimately what THE BEAUTIFUL ASHES is about, but the story is also more personal because Frost has upped the stakes. Meet Adrian, a reformed Demon prince who’s destined to screw up (anti-hero fan girls, REJOICE!!).

Ivy was an interesting character who I can see growing on me over time; she’s young and naive, but if you can see past her rookie mistakes you’ll notice that she’s also tenacious, and tough as nails. Ten days ago this girl was living a typical twenty year olds life, then her sister goes missing, her parents are killed, and no, she’s not crazy. Demon realms exist. All things considering, I think she did pretty darned good! This book isn’t entirely angel-free, but Zach didn’t really make an impression on me either way. At least he wasn’t preachy (my #1 ‘angel book’ pet peeve). I liked Costa well-enough however, I’m not overly confident of his chances at survival, so I tried not to get too attached. Demetrius was convincing as this series’ big bad, and I look forward to him and Ivy eventually butting heads.

The ending was predictable and rushed; betrayal and Ivy having to hunt down the other Demon killing weapons were foregone conclusions. THE BEAUTIFUL ASHES was sometimes gory, rarely sweet, and 100% Jeaniene Frost!
Profile Image for Ashley Williams.
Author 1 book281 followers
June 13, 2014
What can I say about this book? It was okay, but I wanted and expected so much more. I wanted a romance like Bones and Cat and an adventure/mystery that I have grown accustomed to when reading a JF book. There was a journey involved, but it was littered with a lot of backstory, secrets, and tension. I found nothing really that was redeeming about Adrian's character after the fourth chapter on. Ivy's character is okay, but I would have liked her to be a bit stronger or sterner in certain situations. And under no circumstances, would I let anyone choke the crap out of me without consequences.

I will say that my review could reflect upon the fact that I don't find angel/demon books interesting, unless they are done right (Larissa Ione style). I just don't like all of the retelling/ history/religion that goes into one of these stories. Another aspect of the book I didn't care for was the secrecy and mystery of the book. I will say that a certain amount of mystery makes the book intriguing, but after so many secrets, and after so long, you just get a little pissy about the situation. No one, and I mean NO ONE is honest in this book, everyone tells half-truths or flat-out refuses to divulge anything. I found myself aggravated at the MC for not putting her foot down and demanding the truth. The romance wasn't there for me either... they were more physically attracted than emotionally, and had more negative reactions towards one another than steamy, swoony, or romantic.

Overall, you may find it a little more enjoyable than I, especially if you like reading about wars between good and evil, a good journey into demon realms, or brooding muscular males.
Profile Image for Terri ♥ (aka Mrs. Christian Grey).
1,386 reviews470 followers
March 12, 2015
Quick review:

Cover: No likey
Rating: PG-13
Thumbs Up: 2
Overall: Really Bad
Characters: Not Good
Plot: Girl’s life is in danger.
Page Turner: Kind of
Series Cont.? Maybe
Recommend: No
Book Boyfriend: Adrian

SUMMARY (50 words or less)
Sad, but this book is a ugly mess. I can’t believe this book has been traditionally published. The editor should be fired. The plot is all over the place. The wantabe romance comes off insta lovie and psychotic. It’s a shame. I love this author.

For a full review and yummy pic, see my blog post at:


Audio Review
Tavia Gilbert is an excellent narrator. Unfortunately, because she narrated all the books and series by this author, Ivy comes off as a carbon copy of Cat/Lelia/etc (all the other female character’s this author has written.) It’s possible a fresh voice might have helped this book. Though I fear nothing could except if it was rewritten.
Profile Image for Jen Davis.
Author 7 books700 followers
June 29, 2017
I went into this book with kind of low expectations after some of my fellow blogger buddies told me they were disappointed. Despite that, or maybe thanks in part to that, I ended up pleasantly surprised to find that I enjoyed it. True, I had some issues which I will detail in a moment. But overall, I found it engaging and entertaining and I will keep reading when the second book comes out.

I will give this warning: don’t go into this book expecting anything like Cat & Bones. That’s a one way ticket to disappointment. I could still hear Jeaniene Frost’s voice in the writing but any similarity ends there. The world building is very different. Ivy could not be more unlike Cat. And Adrian is nothing like Bones. That’s not a bad thing, in my opinion. It just means there is a different story to tell.

The book hits the ground running as we meet Ivy in the midst of a hunt for her missing sister. Her adopted parents are dead and all she has to go on is a cryptic message from her sister to aid her in her search. She realizes she must be onto something when she is attacked by members of the small town where she is hunting. Which leads her to the sexy, enigmatic Adrian, who not only saves her life but opens her eyes to the truth about herself and the world she lives in. You see Mac is a sidhe-seer Ivy can see past the glamours of demons in our world and she can see into their dimensions in places where the veil is thin. All this is thanks to an ancient blood-line she carries, but knew nothing about.

It wasn’t until I sat down to write this that I saw the parallels to Darkfever (which for those of you who haven’t read it, that was the reference I made above) –but obviously they have a lot in common. The heroines are both college age young women, embarking on a dangerous journey out of loyalty to a lost sister. Both must struggle to make sense of the disturbing things they alone can see. And both must fight an attraction to a powerful man who knows more than he is willing to share. But this is not a carbon copy by any means.

First of all, Ivy has struggled with these visions her entire life. She is not a ditz. She may not start off as a powerhouse demon fighter, but she is no blonde bimbo. In fact, she handles the revelations thrust upon her with an almost unbelievable stoicism. Adrian, meanwhile, is sexy, knowledgable and hides things. But he is no Barrons. Despite his skills, he is vulnerable. He fears his so-called fate and his ability to change it. And the mystery of what he is, is revealed over the course of the story.

I didn’t find it predictable, even if it was a little familiar. I was very interested in how it would all play out. But there were some things that kept me from loving it with my whole heart. Like all of the withholding of information, especially from Adrian. It got really old, really fast –and it continued throughout the book. Ivy has a vital mission and the idea that she should do it without all the facts is ridiculous, especially among powerful beings who should know better. That was big issue number one. Big issue number two was the big “betrayal” reveal at the end. That fell majorly flat for me and Ivy’s reaction felt overblown and contrived.

Despite those problems, I liked it. It’s missing some of the laughs I am used to from Frost. And it’s missing the sex. But I read it in one sitting –and I want to know what will happen next with this story.

Rating: B/B-

*ARC Provided by Harlequin
Profile Image for Jennifer.
1,730 reviews6,662 followers
April 11, 2017
I promised myself that I wouldn't compare Jeaniene Frost's new Broken Destiny series to her existing Night Huntress series, but just the fact that I am writing this statement indicates I obviously couldn't help it. I mean, the Night Huntress series is THE series that made the urban fantasy genre my go-to for reading material. But alas, both series are written by the one and only Jeaniene Frost so just that fact is promising in itself!

The Beautiful Ashes is very different from what I've read from Ms. Frost in the past. It's a paranormal/urban fantasy of course but the introduction to this world and its characters felt very much like a new-adult version of City of Bones. At least that's what my brain told me several times throughout the first half of my reading experience. But the second half really began to set this story apart from others. A high-suspense novel themed with good versus evil remains, but it appears that each story in this series may feature a Biblical character/event that is a focal point in the high-stakes tasks required to prevent the end of the world. Regarding the characters, I liked the female lead: Ivy pretty much right away. The male lead: Adrian grew on me very slowly. I'm still not completely sold on him but Ivy and Adrian's chemistry is very promising! Is it Cat and Bones promising? That remains to be seen. But if this first installment is any indication, the romance aspect is mild (at least mild for Jeaniene Frost) and is secondary to a paranormal thriller/suspense plot. Ivy is young and inexperienced, and the adult content in this book is pretty reserved. I'm hopeful that the romance element will grow as the series progresses because I adore Ms. Frost's ability to create sizzling chemistry among her characters. Overall, I enjoyed The Beautiful Ashes and give it 3.5 stars, rounding up to 4 on goodreads. I definitely plan to continue the series and see what else Ms. Frost has up her sleeve. If you enjoy a fairly clean urban fantasy or if you have enjoyed some of Ms. Frost's other work, check it out!

My favorite quote:
I closed my eyes. Either I let my sister rot, or I had to run around freezing demon realms wearing the equivalent of a leather bikini. How had this become my life? “Let’s get the bondage lizard party started, then,” I finally said, opening my eyes. Like it or not, this was my life, so I had to make the best of it."
Profile Image for Yodamom.
1,990 reviews194 followers
October 11, 2014
2.5 stars
This book, this book has me stumped, did I like it or not ? I read it and I'm still unsure what it was. I went from ohhhh, to huh? to WTH ? and oh just shut up, through most of the first 3/4. I picked it up based on the author. I did not know anything about it, I didn't even read the back cover blurb before diving in. I'm not sure if this is NA YA or what it read like a YNA. I'm not found of the NA gene so far.
The first 85 pages where a trip down a familiar path. They covered details, personalities and story line almost exactly like my favorite series The Fever series, by KMM. I could tell you how but that might spoil some of the "surprise" for you. Bottom line I did not like Ivy the MC.
The story wobbled along, with her (Ivy) having many TSTL moments with the oh so sickening "I can change him" bursts in reality. Holy dumbness, this guy was terrible and she spent all her energy forgiving him, making excuses for him, taking all his negative comments and twisting them to her view. (oh excuse me I just got nauseous) What on earth is this silly idiotic girl thinking ? I know he really didn't mean that, I know he really wants me and I'm going to fix him ! (oh there goes my stomach again) I hate this unrealistic goal that so many women believe, they can " fix" people. To read it for entertainment purposes, not very entertaining.
Let's talk about love, no lust, no surreal bonding, no emotional abuse. Geesh, what a surge of hot, cold, freezing, hot, lust, cold hate, want, need, hate, leave. I thought I was reading a YA at one point it was so immature, then it went to NA Smexy, with total acceptance of arseholeness. The lusty moments where good, but then they where cut off and thrown into the unbelievable pile. I never got a complete moment out of these two, their relationship was totally confusing.
I enjoyed the last 1/4 of the book more. It raced through some serious action with all kinds of dangerous beauties and badness. Then it crashed and burned my jaded heart with a last " I can change him ! " not this poo pile again. Arugh !!!
Wow, looking back I didn't like it much did I ? It was hard for me to get over some of the really immature views of the MC. We all have our little peeves and Ivy just whacked mine over and over. Overall I did like the book enough to give book 2 a shot, a free shot from the library. It's a borrow book for me.
Profile Image for The BookChick .
1,453 reviews430 followers
August 29, 2014
So...The Beautiful Ashes by Jeaniene Frost. This story contained a different flavor. My advice is to check your preconceived notions at the door and read this book as if you are reading a book by a new-to-you author, and not one whose writing you know well. If you start reading The Beautiful Ashes with the thought that this will be like the Night Huntress series, you will be greatly disappointed. There is no Cat, Bones, or vampires to be found in this book. However, if you suspend preconceptions and read this story with fresh eyes, you will discover a story that is much different but contains a lot of depth, action, intrigue, and romance, too. Because this is the inaugural book in the series, there is a great deal of world building so the story contains a profuse amount of information and character backstory. The Beautiful Ashes is a story of opposites -- light vs. dark, good vs. evil, and angels vs. demons vs. humans. In a race against the clock, a young woman discovers that she is more than she thought she was. She also discovers that she has a lineage which throws her world on it's axis.

The Beautiful Ashes does not open quietly. It begins with Ivy on a hunt for her missing sister while she is also dealing with the devastating loss of her adoptive parents. Ivy quickly discovers that she is "not in Kansas anymore" when she is thrust in the middle of a battle that she didn't even know was raging. Ivy learns that things are not as they seem because evil is lurking not so far beneath the surface. Out of her league, Ivy has has no idea how to manage her new reality alone but, fortunately for her, she doesn't need to. The sexy and enigmatic Adrian is sent to retrieve Ivy and deliver her to the Archon/Angel, Zach. Adrian and Ivy are instantly drawn to one another and their attraction sizzles, almost literally. Sadly, the attraction cools on Adrian's side once he realizes just who Ivy is and what she represents. But Adrian vows to help her in her quest to find her sister and discover a lost biblical artifact because he loathes the demons that have been sent for her. Along the way, Ivy and Adrian uncover truths about themselves and each other that have the power to tear them apart forever.

I enjoyed The Beautiful Ashes a great deal, which was a surprising to me for two reasons: first, it was new adult (20 year old heroine) and it was an urban fantasy, neither of which I particularly enjoy normally. However, The Beautiful Ashes was captivating from beginning to end. The story knitted together well and set the stage for things to come to the series later on. The characters -- primary and secondary -- contained a depth that made them feel multidimensional and their motives believable. Although you cannot see the full picture of what will happen throughout this series, you are able to glean details that set the stage very well. I was impressed by this inaugural book in Frost's new series and look forward to seeing how she will grow it over time.

P.S. I "read" this story as an audiobook and Frost used the same narrator as she did for the Night Huntress books. Tavia Gilbert did a masterful job bringing Frost's story to life.
Profile Image for Aly.
2,331 reviews67 followers
April 6, 2018
You know like when you read a book and wish you were there, living the character's life ? Well... I wouldn't want to be in Ivy's shoes. Her parents died in a car accident recently and it's been over a week since her sister disappeared so Ivy started looking for Jasmine at the bed-and-breakfast where she last texted she was. And then an intruder get in her room and someone else tried to kill her. Little did she know that the worse was to come. She'll get answers about the hallucinations she's had all her life and revelation about her true origins, which lead her to travel much further than she could have imagined. Her ally in all of this ? An enigmatic stranger who tell her not to trust him.

I was about to begin the second book in the series when I realized it's been years since I read the first one and didn't remember a lot so it called for a reread. I wish I could raise my inital rating of 3 but I'm still not totally sold on the storyline of the Broken Destiny's series. The old case of it's not you, it's just my taste ;p I have no trouble with the first-person POV nor the fact it's more Young or New Adult but I can't say that I connected with the characters or felt the chemistry between Ivy and Adrian. But I'm ready to give them an other chance. I just think the lusting for each other happened too quickly given the circumstances. But I always appreciate the humor Jeaniene Frost incorporate in her books. There was a lot of funny lines I would have wrote in my review if they didn't spoil the plot.
Profile Image for Sarah.
3,336 reviews1,017 followers
August 24, 2014
Buddy read with Ange

As a huge fan of Jeaniene Frost's Night Huntress series I have had The Beautiful Ashes on my wish list ever since I first found out she was writing a new adult urban fantasy series. In fact, I'd go so far as to say that this was probably one of my most anticipated reads of the year so I can't even tell you how excited I was to get my hands on a review copy! This is quite a departure from the Night Huntress books though and Jeaniene Frost has created a fascinating new world full of demons living hidden amongst us preying on unsuspecting human victims.

Ivy has suffered from horrifying hallucinations for her entire life, her parents have tried everything to help her but no amount of therapy or medication was able to stop them. In the end Ivy pretended that they had stopped just so that she would be allowed to live a normal life, well as normal as possible considering she sees monsters everywhere she goes. Ivy always thought she was crazy and she definitely never believed that her visions were real but when her sister Jasmine goes missing and her parents are killed she suddenly finds herself faced with her worst nightmares. Not only are the monsters real but they have taken Jasmine. Ivy is determined to do whatever it takes to rescue her sister but she isn't going to be able to do it alone and she desperately needs the help of mysterious stranger Adrian. The trouble is that she knows Adrian is keeping secrets and she isn't sure if she can really trust him to have her back.

While I liked this story and am definitely intrigued enough to want to carry on reading the series I have to admit I was a little disappointed in this first instalment. I just had such high expectations for this book and it didn't quite manage to live up to them which was a shame. There was a lot to like about the world building though and for the most part I liked both of the main characters but it missed that elusive spark that takes a story from a good one to an amazing one.

Ivy is thrown completely out of her depth when her sister is taken but she handles herself quite well and I liked seeing her determination to get to the bottom of what was happening. For the most part she is quite a strong character, she does have a few meltdowns but considering everything that she uncovers in such a short period of time I'd say she was entitled to them. I liked Adrian too, he was a decent guy who had good reasons for keeping his distance from Ivy once he realises who she is. What I found incredibly frustrating was his refusal to answer any of her questions or to give her any information about what was happening to her. There were times when her life was needlessly placed in danger because he just hadn't bothered to explain why certain things need to be avoided. It was infuriating and if they could just have had a proper conversation she would have been much more aware of the dangers and less likely to fall into a trap set by the demons.

I liked the chemistry between Ivy and Adrian but I did feel that they fell for each other just a little too quickly. I would have liked more of a slow build between them, especially since this is just the first book in a series, and it would have made things more believable considering how many secrets Adrian was keeping. In spite of the issues I did still enjoy The Beautiful Ashes, the world is interesting and I'm very curious to see how things will play out as the series continues.
Profile Image for AH.
2,005 reviews370 followers
August 22, 2014
Initial Thoughts: A strong start to a dark new series by Jeaniene Frost. The Beautiful Ashes doesn't exactly bring to mind the story of Ivy, a young woman who can sense hallowed places and hallowed artifacts. Then again, I wasn't expecting to meet the dark and foreboding character of Adrian either. This is an intriguing trip around the US to various demon portals and demon realms in search of Ivy's sister Jasmine and (can you believe it?) an artifact going back to Biblical times. This is a story where family bloodlines are very important, too.

Joint Review with Christal
Christal and I discuss The Beautiful Ashes on our blog Badass Book Reviews where this book was part of Lovin' los libro's Jumble Your Genres Challenge.

Thank you to NetGalley and Harlequin for a review copy of this book.

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