Series Review – The Dark Elements Trilogy

Posted June 5, 2020 by Emily in Series Review / 2 Comments

This series review is (probably) going to have spoilers. You have been warned.

Click the arrows to reveal my reviews for books #2 and #3.

Series in Review

The Dark Elements series is honestly one of my favorites. It’s just so swoon-worthy. It’s one of my go-to’s when I’m in need of an excellent romantic fantasy read.

White Hot Kiss (#1)
Series Review – The Dark Elements Trilogy
TITLE: White Hot Kiss
AUTHOR: Jennifer L. Armentrout
SERIES: The Dark Elements #1
Publisher: Inkyard Press
Goodreads | Amazon | Barnes & Noble
RATING: 4.5 Stars

In the instant New York Times bestseller that started the Dark Elements series, one kiss is enough to kill...

Layla just wants to fit in at school and go on a date with Zayne, whom she's crushed on since forever. Trouble is, Zayne treats Layla like a sister--and Layla is a half demon, half gargoyle with abilities no one else possesses. And even though Zayne is a Warden, part of the race of gargoyles tasked with keeping humanity safe, Layla's kiss will kill anything with a soul - including him.

Then she meets Roth - a demon who claims to know her secrets. Though Layla knows she should stay away, it's tough when that whole no-kissing thing isn't an issue. Trusting Roth could ruin her chances with Zayne, but as Layla discovers she's the reason for a violent demon uprising, kissing the enemy suddenly pales in comparison to the looming end of the world.

Review

Ugh, there’s so much to love about White Hot Kiss. It’s honestly so close to perfect, imo. The world-building was so good, and the premise was really fascinating. Roth, one of the main male characters, was just so dreamy. Needless to say, this book features a swoon-worthy romance. I particularly enjoyed the discussion of some more meaningful topics, like labels vs. true identity, good vs. evil, discrimination, and more. Those discussions woven into the plot led to some excellent character development. Especially, since I found Layla, the main character, a bit too naïve at first. And how could I forget the greatness of Bambi, Roth’s animal familiar?

That said, I wasn’t a big fan of the love triangle. Or was it a square? Yeah, I’m not a big fan.

Final Rating
Characters
4.5 Stars
Pacing
4 Stars
Plot
4.5 Stars
Romance
5 Stars
Writing
4 Stars
World Building
4.5 Stars
Overall: 4.4

Stone Cold Touch (#2)
Series Review – The Dark Elements Trilogy
TITLE: Stone Cold Touch
AUTHOR: Jennifer L. Armentrout
SERIES: The Dark Elements #2
Publisher: Inkyard Press
Goodreads | Amazon | Barnes & Noble
RATING: 4 Stars

ONE TOUCH CAN HEAL

Layla Shaw is trying to pick up the pieces of her shattered life. Her best friend, Zayne, is forever off-limits thanks to her mysterious power of a soul-stealing kiss. Suddenly, the Warden clan that has always protected her is keeping dangerous secrets. And she can barely think about Roth, the forbidden demon prince who understood her in ways no one else ever could.

Rock bottom is only the beginning once Layla’s powers finally start to evolve. She’s offered a tantalizing taste of what has always been forbidden, finally getting what she has always wanted, but with hell literally breaking loose and the body count piling up, the price may be higher than Layla is willing or able to pay.

Review

Stone Cold Touch suffers from second book syndrome a bit. That’s not to say I didn’t enjoy it, just that it wasn’t as good as White Hot Kiss. Maybe because I didn’t get enough of Roth.

Oh, and the annoying love triangle from the first book got upgraded to a stupid, stupid, stupid love triangle. It was whatever when its existence was implied in White Hot Kiss, but it was totally different to see it in action. I’m not the biggest fan of Zayne and Layla together. I’m usually all for friends to lovers stories, but these two just didn’t work together. For starters, I think they were portrayed way too much like siblings to pull it off (at least from Zayne’s perspective). And because of that, they kind of lacked romantic chemistry, especially when compared to Roth and Layla.

It was also sad to see Layla’s development in White Hot Kiss regress a bit. Although, thinking about it now, I do think it makes the story a bit more realistic. Or at least, as realistic as a book with demons and live gargoyles can be.

As much as those things annoyed me, I did enjoy reading Stone Cold Touch. It has such an interesting plot with so many surprises. I really like the way the storying is going.

But did I mention the love triangle. Ugh!

Final Rating
Characters
4 Stars
Pacing
4 Stars
Plot
4 Stars
Romance
3.5 Stars
Writing
4 Stars
World Building
4.5 Stars
Overall: 4

Every Last Breath (#3)
Series Review – The Dark Elements Trilogy
TITLE: Every Last Breath
AUTHOR: Jennifer L. Armentrout
SERIES: The Dark Elements #3
Publisher: Inkyard Press
Goodreads | Amazon | Barnes & Noble
RATING: 4.5 Stars

EACH BREATH MAY BE THE LAST

Every choice has consequences and Layla Shaw faces tougher choices than most. Light or darkness? Hardest of all, Layla has to decide which side of herself to trust. What will she do with the new problem at hand? A Lilin, the deadliest of demons, has been unleashed, wreaking havoc on all around her. To keep her best friend from a fate worse than death, Layla must strike a deal with the enemy while saving her city from destruction.

Torn between two worlds, Layla has no certainties, especially when an old bargain comes back to haunt them all. But sometimes, when secrets are everywhere and the truth seems unknowable, you have to listen to your heart, pick a side and fight like hell.

Review

Every Last Breath was such a fitting end to a great series. It had everything that Stone Cold Touch was missing, *cough cough ROTH. It also had a few heartbreaking moments. Not going to lie, I cried a few times. It just tugs on your heartstrings.

Every Last Breath had a great mix of humor, action, mystery, and of course, romance. I really enjoyed watching Roth and Layla’s characters development and their relationship blossom.

Final Rating
Characters
4.5 Stars
Pacing
4 Stars
Plot
4.5 Stars
Romance
4.5 Stars
Writing
4.5 Stars
World Building
4.5 Stars
Overall: 4.4

Have you read this trilogy? What did you think of it?

Emily

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