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Ruined (The Eternal Balance, Book One)

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  • Posted January 28, 2014

    This is my first taste of Jus's writing. The book takes an intri

    This is my first taste of Jus's writing. The book takes an intriguing spin on the tale of Cain and Abel, a story outline I remember from my Sunday School days long ago but not the finer details.

    Twins, Jax and Chase are polar opposites in personalities, and they are both trying to win the heart of the heroine, Samantha, a girl the boys grew up with. The boys have very different agendas for why they want Samantha though. From the start we know that a demon is attached to Jax as penance for their ancestors sins, but the author added a clever twist near the end about what exactly Chase's penance was. Up till that point you thought Chase didn't have one but he was sneaky about keeping his a secret his whole life.

    An enthralling read about love with a dark paranormal twist. Very refreshing writing style that helped me enjoy a taste of life from a demon's point of view as I normally read books about angel and vampire paranormal elements.

    4.5 stars

    *arc kindly provided by publisher via netgalley for honest review*

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  • Posted January 14, 2014

    The premise of Ruined is very different.  From the synopsis you

    The premise of Ruined is very different.  From the synopsis you have a very good idea of what the story is about.  I just can’t imagine the pain of always living with another being inside that is always hungry for pain and fear. 




    Poor Jax, my heart broke for him.  He tried so hard to be good, knowing all the time that a demon lived inside of him.  It must be a terrifying feeling of helplessness. However, he is strong, loyal, with a big sense of responsibility and a healthy dose of ‘I don’t care’. Of course, it always helps that he's hot, sexy and strong. 




    I’m not sure what to think of Samantha.  She is definitely Jax’s match and partner in crime.  She is stubborn, strong, and tries her best to be fearless.  I admire that she was able to accept Jax because I don’t think I would be able to.  Jax and Sam’s relationship is really complicated and I suspect that it will become more so.




    Chase is supposed to be the good twin brother, but I just didn’t like him from the beginning.  He was way too happy to torture his brother and he was an expert at letting others take the blame for everything he did. Overall, the characterization is good, I really sympathized with Jax and his predicament.




    The plot is good and some of the twists and turns are unexpected, but I have to confess on having my strong suspicions from the beginning.  The demon world building is based on common believes and well fleshed out. This is obviously the first book in a series and the ending left a lot to be desired.  The writing is really good and the hotness level was way up there :)




    This book was different from my usual YA reads.  Not bad by all means, just different and definitely more for NA and adult readers.








    I will definitely read the next book in the series, I need to know what happens with Jax and Sam next (a loophole please!) 

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  • Posted January 13, 2014

    more from this reviewer

    Unique New Adult Paranormal I was just talking to someone the o

    Unique New Adult Paranormal

    I was just talking to someone the other day about how saturated the New Adult market is with Contemporary stories. Which is not to say I don't love a good Contemp, but I think that if "New Adult" is to become a solid, recognized genre, there needs to be a broader range of Sci-Fi, Fantasy, Paranormal and Dystopian available.

    RUINED is a great start to the NA Paranormal! It''s unique, entertaining, and puts a whole new spin on the "bad boy". The story of Cain and Abel and the curse their descendants have to deal with is one that I have not come across yet in any level of my reading. It's fast paced, action packed with plenty of romance but the romance isn't what drives the plot - another plus in my book. It's nice to read a NA that doesn't just focus on getting to the sexy parts and staying there for the rest of the book. I enjoyed this, and I'm curious to see where the next installment of this series goes.

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  • Posted January 12, 2014

    Ruined by Jus Accardo is the first book in her new Eternal Balan

    Ruined by Jus Accardo is the first book in her new Eternal Balance series. Lately I have read a lot of stories about Angels and Demons. Ruined is mostly about demons or tainted (humans and demons sharing the same body), but this story is totally different than most, as the bases of the story revolves around Good & Evil, or Cain and Abel.

    We meet our flawed hero Jax, as he returns home to visit his dying uncle. Jax considers himself the unlucky one, cursed with being a descendant of the world’s first murderer, Cain. He lives with another being inside him, a demon named Azirak. Jax left town a few years back to protect Samantha, the girl he loved, from danger of his fierce anger, that is part of him. But now that he is back, it all starts again, as he sees Samantha talking to his brother Chase, who is the one everyone loves.

    Before he has a chance to leave town again, Samantha’s life is now in danger, as she has been marked by a demon. Jax has to fight his feelings for Sam, at the same time find out why and who is targeting her. Together, he and Sam try to resolve this, and at same time not act on their raging sexual chemistry. Making things difficult is Jax’s needs to keep his demon under control and fed. Easier said then done, especially with the demon side showing interest in Sam. The other thorn is Chase’s continued interest in Sam, and his ability to create havoc against his brother.

    As for Sam, she tries to understand why Jax left originally, but she knows she loves him. When she begins to understand the truth about demons, and Jax’s violent mood swings; Sam is still determined to find a way to save Jax, at any cost.

    When I first started this book, I was not sure if it would keep my attention, as it was a bit perhaps redundant, with Jax constantly being angry, and talking to his demon or being nasty to Sam. He wasn’t very likable, and you sort of thought you knew why the town hated him; though I never liked Chase from the start. But about a third of the way in, the story got very exciting, with lots of action, which kept me anxiously turning the pages. We learn more about the curse, Jax, his demon, and Sam.

    The ending of this book was revealing with some twists, and just when I was somewhat relieved and starting to relax, Jus Accardo throws us for loop with a damn cliffhanger. Oh well this is a series, and their will always be good versus evil. If you like action, suspense, demons, violence, good vs evil, hot sex, heartbreak and a couple that are truly in love, than Ruined is for you.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 7, 2014

    I swear Jus has done it again with another amazing series. This

    I swear Jus has done it again with another amazing series. This author is one of my favorite writers because she creates such complex characters that even though they are flawed and messed up you can't help but to fall in love with them. She has done it again in the form of Jax. Oh my where do I start with him. Jax is such a sweet guy even though he has a demon inside him. He fights so hard to control it and sometimes it works but most of the time it doesn't. I felt for Jax from the start of this book because he was so unhappy and couldn't have the one person that he wanted in his life which was Sam. I hated seeing them both so unhappy when it was obvious they were meant to be together. 




    As we get further into this book we learn why Jax has the demon inside him and I felt the author created a unique story line with the way she told this well known tale. Jax quickly learns that Sam is in trobule and he has to stick around town to help her out. I mean after all he loves her and can't let anything happen to her. I have to say that once we learn who is after Sam I wasn't really shocked but I felt so bad for Jax. I knew he didn't want it to come to what it does but I was rooting for him and Sam to come out on top. The author threw in a good plot twist with that one and it took me by surprise.




    Overall this was another amazing read and the scenes with Sam and Jax were so hot and amazing. The author wrote such great chemistry between them that they were burning up the pages. I loved seeing them together and even when they were apart you could feel the love between them. I would highly recommend this one as a hot read for this great winter season. If all NA reads are as great as this one I will be adding more of them to my shelves to read.

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  • Posted January 6, 2014

    more from this reviewer

    When I started Ruined by Jus Accardo, I wasn't sure if I was goi

    When I started Ruined by Jus Accardo, I wasn't sure if I was going to like the story. I did want to read the story, because of the cover. Then I read the book blurb, which intrigued me more. Once I started reading I wonder what I got myself into. As I progress in the my reading the more the storied developed and was taken aback. 

    Anyway, the story is about twin brothers who have hate each since birth. Chase has been viewed as the good brother, while Jax has been viewed as the bad seed. However, Samantha has always viewed that Jax as the one who has gotten a bad rapped and sees more in him. Also, she doesn't believe Chase is all that good. That girl might be on to something. Another thing about Jax is he has a demon living inside him. 

    So, you have these brothers vying for the same girl, but the girl has chosen who she wants. However, Chase will stop at nothing to get everything he wants. Now there is a plot twist I wasn't expecting it has to do with Chase. I have to say that it truly blew my mind. 

    Anyway, Ruined was pretty good once the story started to pick up. I think the twist in plot was mind blowing, and I can say "I didn't see that coming". However, by the end of the book you know there is more to the story, because there is a subtle cliff hanger. I wonder what is going to happen next and how some of the problems are going to work themselves out. Is there hope for Jax and Samantha or is it a doom relationship. I seriously, hope there is a chance for them to be together. So, if you are looking for a start of a new series that centers around demons, you might give Ruined a chance. 

    Copy provided by publisher

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  • Posted January 6, 2014

    more from this reviewer

    Pretty Good Book!

    Pretty Good Book!

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  • Posted January 3, 2014

    When I picked this book up I was in a major reading slump, proba

    When I picked this book up I was in a major reading slump, probably my worst yet. With me being very busy at work I didn’t have time to read and then I just never got the desire to read anything. When I finally made myself pick up a book again I was so glad it was Ruined. I finished this in one sitting and it kicked that slumps butt. I love paranormal reads and I especially love when they are mixed with New Adult, because those are few and far between.




    Jax is cranky… so naturally I like him a lot. He is an antihero at its finest. He isn’t exactly a good guy, but he has a lot of redeeming qualities and he tries to do what is right. Also, it’s not really his fault and a lot of times that sounds like a cop out to make a bad guy good, but with Jax it is the truth. It’s kinda hard to be an angel when you have to share your body with a demon. He really has been dealt a crappy hand and my heart broke for him. His situation is pretty much impossible to deal with. 




    Then there is Sam and I really liked her. She is a wonderful heroine, not whiny or clingy and she deals with the paranormal aspects realistically without being frustrating. She is also strong and determined. She wants to be involved but realizes that she can’t do it all herself. I love that she knows what she wants and goes for it and that she is willing to sacrifice for things bigger than herself. 




    I really love the paranormal aspect to this one. It wasn’t just your typical demons and Jus Accardo gave them her own flair. Our story centers around the decedents of Cain (you know Cain and Abel). His descendants are still paying for his sins and that is how Jax ended up sharing a body with a demon. Not so fair if you ask me, but nobody ever said life is fair. As you can guess, that makes life difficult. Especially when you love a girl named Sam, but being near her makes you happy and happy isn’t so good for the demon since he feeds off fear and rage. Really all these things combined nicely for an awesome paranormal read. Now add in the other New Adult elements I love and we have a winner. 




    Now while I did really enjoy this book, I do have some complaints. Jax was moody and he is very much stuck on the “he is no good for Sam” thing. Which does have some truth, but Sam is a big girl and is making an informed decision. Also that repeats a lot throughout the story. I also wanted a bit more happily ever after in my conclusion. I know it’s a series and there is more to come, but throw me a bone! Give me some sort of hope. Right now I’m sad. I mean I still am dying for more, but I’m sad. 




    All in all, Ruined is a great read and one that paranormal fans are sure to enjoy. It’s a fresh twist on demons and also has a great forbidden romance that you root for. 

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  • Posted January 2, 2014

    This was a good twist. I enjoyed reading this. It was a little h

    This was a good twist. I enjoyed reading this. It was a little hard for me to get into it at first but then I was all in. The only thing that bugs me is all the “F” bombs. I just never heard it as much as I read it.




    Samantha is a good soul herself. She keeps Jax grounded. He has always loved her and she has always loved him. But Jax up and left one night and Sam never understood why he left. Then Jax came back because his uncle who raised Jax and his twin, Chase was dying. Samantha had tried to move on and went to school but when she was attacked on campus she came home.




    Chase was also home when Jax came home. Jax’s demon in him despises Chase and has wanted Chase dead. Jax has fought his literal inner demon on it for years until one night when he is over Chase with a knife in his hand and decides he needs to leave to protect his family. You see, this demon in Jax needs to feed off fear, lust or any severe emotion or violence. And Jax is too afraid of letting it hurt Samantha either so he leaves without so much as a goodbye or note.




    When Jax sees them both, he wants to leave but stays when he finds out Samantha is in danger. Then after being back and the sparks are still there between them, his demon decides he likes Sam too.
    Then Jax learns of the rules of the demons when he comes back and has to fight for his life and Sam’s too.




    Then all hell breaks loose as things get more complicated and Jax finds out who is inner demon really is and what he is. Now, he is running out of time to find out what demon has literal control over Sam. And then he has to figure out how to fix it. And with intimacy being a problem, due to the demon’s need for strong emotion and violence, things get more complicated and creative. But Sam will wait for Jax because even when she finds out about Jax, she is still there for him and believes in him.




    There are many deals made by the end of the book and it is both happy and sad. I want the next book NOW. I may lose it soon and find my inner demon; because Sam and Jax still need each other and I need to see that! I kind of knew where some of this was going but I didn’t guess it all. Now, I have more questions than answers. But, Jax, he is definitely swoon worthy material!




    If you like, demons, good vs. evil, wars, super strength, someone else getting the injuries and not you, because you have that kind of power, and fighting for what you want and overcoming what you are then you will like this.




    4.5 stars for I am tired of all the F bombs.




    Quote to think on...
    ...I'd watched the girl with the long brown hair stand eerily still. She didn't cry. Didn't speak. Only stood there staring at the ground as her parents were lowered into the cold, wet earth. Even then, so early in my life, I saw pieces of myself mirrored in her eyes. Lost. Alone. Separated. Ruined. It was another one of those defining moments. I'd known, even then, that this girl would play a monumental role in my life. We'd grown up close. Inseparable, really. Friends. Partners in crime. It was the last step-love-that pushed me to leave her behind.

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  • Posted January 1, 2014

    more from this reviewer

    I don't think I have really read any books based directly on the

    I don't think I have really read any books based directly on the story of Cain and Abel. I thought this was a very cool take on it. I started off not really liking the characters, but was really enjoying the story. Then I came to understand the characters more which changed my original assessment of them. The romance in this was great too. I was frustrated with it, but also understood why it was the way it was. I wanted so badly for Jax and Samantha to get their happy ending, though I couldn't see how that would be possible. I read this book rather quickly since I found myself totally immersed in it and didn't want to put it down.

    Jax is cursed, living with a demon inside of him. He is constantly fighting for control. He doesn't want to give into the thing living inside of him, but he does what he needs to keep it happy. It thrives on pain, suffering, and violence. Jax needs to commit horrible acts to keep the thing contained. Even if it means sacrificing his own happiness, which happens to be Samantha. After going back home to see his uncle, he encounters Samantha again and can't resist the urge to touch her, spend time with her, and feel happy. He tries over and over again to push her away though knowing that it can't happen. He came off as such a jerk. He is hurtful towards her, but I understood that he was doing it to help her. He is just ignorant to the fact that she cares about him no matter what. Instead of leaving again, he now needs to stay and protect her from whoever is trying to kill her. When we first meet Jax, we think that he is bad, but really he is such a good person. He is stronger than he thinks too. Even though he got on my nerves some of the time, I really did like him.

    Samantha annoyed me to no end for quite a while. She was so stubborn and frustrating. She wants Jax, and I knew she was hurt and mad at him for leaving her, but she needed to chill out a little. She wants him, but pushes him away. Then gets upset when he tries to do the same to her. After a while when she finally knows about his secret, she gets better. In fact I liked that she refused to give up on him or let him give up on himself. And through all of this, she is also avoiding her attacker and trying to survive. She takes things pretty well and stays strong because she knows she has to. Instead of just letting Jax take care of things though, she is insistent on helping every step of the way. A character who I thought I would hate ended up being pretty great.

    There were a few things that bothered me about the book, but not much. Like, I got sick of hearing constantly how the thing inside Jax was hungry and needed to feed. I get it, but I didn't need to hear about it all the time. Also his constant moodiness and hot and cold got old pretty quick. Besides that though, I really enjoyed the story and how everything all came together. I thought that how things are revealed throughout was great too. This was a pretty fast paced story that made it almost impossible to put down. I can't believe that this was the first book that I have read by this author. I have a few of them, but haven't gotten around to them. She is fantastic and I need to get to all of her other books ASAP!


    *An advanced copy of this book was provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review. I did not receive any compensation.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 1, 2014

    ¿I don¿t skulk.¿ Turning, he winked. I hated it, but despite the

    “I don’t skulk.”
    Turning, he winked. I hated it, but despite the fact that it’d been the night from hell, the quirk of his lip and cure of his cheek sent my heartbeat racing.
    “I loom. Much sexier don’t ya think?” 

     From the Denazen series to the first installment of The Eternal Balance: Ruined, Jus Accardo did it again. She created these wonderfully distinctive characters that you can’t help but adore. Jus made this dark and brooding world with just enough wit that will send you turning the page after the other.

    We won’t see man-whores and weak-willed girls that we often read about in New Adult novels, we will see mature characters that were forced to grow up because of their past and what they have to do in order to find balance.

    The love between Sam and Jax will make you jealous but at the same time have sympathy for them. Both loved each other, and yet, can’t be together. Despite the troubles and the fate against them being together, there was never a doubt of how deep their love is. Sacrificing for someone you love is easy, but sacrificing being with the one you love is not.


    The story evolved beautifully. Every twists and turns (this novel is full of it) blindsided me. I wasn’t expecting half of what happened and THAT is saying a lot. Jax having a demon inside him is just the start of something big. Something that involves his twin brother, Chase. Something that lasted a long time ago. Something to do with Cain and Abel.

    “I saw myself mirrored in her eyes. Lost. Alone. Seperated. “
    “Ruined.”

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  • Posted December 31, 2013

    who is afflicted with a demon curse that feeds off violence in e

    who is afflicted with a demon curse that feeds off violence in exchange for his contentment, he especially struggles to be in the same room as his brother so has spent quite some time away from his hometown and the only girl he ever had feelings for.




    Jax and Samantha have known each other since they were children, both leaving town for differing reasons they are now reunited but things have certainly changed; Jax is easily angered with a big attitude and at times he was a complete ass towards her but she remained loyal and stood by him. His plans were to make a quick exit from town but when Sammy is targeted and almost killed he is determined to find out whom or what wants her dead.




    As far as book boyfriends go it was hard not to fall for Kale from Jus Accardo’s Denazen series but Jax certainly gives him a run for his money but in a completely different way, they are total opposites – personality, mannerisms, attitude etc. which I loved, it showed as an author her knack for writing amazing male heroes who are still loveable despite their flaws.




    I couldn’t fault the main characters! They were well-thought out and their romance was built on a long lasting friendship which developed to more and was heartbreakingly sweet but also complex; Sammy seemed fearless, I loved her sarcasm and wit as well as her loyalty and determination. I was intrigued by Jax and the demon Azirak inside of him; life wasn’t easy, he was a tortured soul and struggled constantly to maintain his cool but they complimented each other well. 




    We don’t get to know all that many secondary characters in Ruined, I was intrigued by Heckle and completely shocked by the villain, they definitely weren’t who I was expecting so this twist was quite the surprise and I’m eager to see how it will all play out in the next installment.




    There were so many things I was curious about as I was reading along and with it being about demons it kept me all that little bit more entertained, they are always portrayed as being badass evil so for one to inhabit a human body with feelings was interesting, I was hoping there would be a way for Jax to rid himself of the demon and my fingers for this are still tightly crossed.




    Jus Accardo’s writing flows beautiful and the concept for Ruined is really unique. With fabulous characters and the promise of exciting things to come, I am eager to read the next book in The Eternal Balance series.




    Overall, Ruined is filled with action, betrayal, violence and a nice romance and despite not finding this to be as solid as Jus Accardo’s previous books, it was still a great start to what I think will be a wonderful series.

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  • Posted December 31, 2013

    Being a huge fan of Jus Accardo's Denazen series, I could not wa

    Being a huge fan of Jus Accardo's Denazen series, I could not wait to read Ruined. It was everything I was hoping it would be and more. 




    Bad boy Jax literally has a demon living inside of him, due to a family curse. The demon is only happy when the people around Jax are miserable, and the demon absolutely hates Jax's twin brother, Chase. His entire life Jax has had to control the urge to kill his brother, but one night after almost losing control, Jax finally leaves his home behind. In leaving, he also left the love of his life, Sam. Jax doesn't want to be alone, but he knows if he isn't, the demon will finally win and he really will hurt someone. After Jax comes back to town to visit his uncle, he learns that someone is after Sam and he vows to protect her. Forcing him to stay close to his brother. 




    Ruined was told in the POV of both Jax and Sam and I loved this! I wasn't expecting to read Sam's side, so I was pleasantly surprised when I saw I was able too. I loved the connection between the two of them. You could tell how much Jax loved her, even though it was so hard for him. My heart broke for Jax. He lived such a cruel fate, and while sometimes he deserved the bad rap, other times he did not. 




    I wasn't surprised with the big reveal in the end. It was pretty easy to figure out who the bad guy was, but I still enjoyed how Accardo put everything together. I am very much looking forward to the second book!   

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  • Posted December 31, 2013

    Finally! A book that depicts demons as demons! Not the cuddly, s

    Finally! A book that depicts demons as demons! Not the cuddly, super sex charged, or things that area actually good inside. Well, I might be wrong about the super sex charged part but, whatever. Jax has been fighting with his real life inner demon his whole life. Being a decedent of Cain definitely sucks. The demon has a hunger for pain and fear. Something that needs to be fed frequently. Jax had to leave home for if he didn't he would murder his twin brother, Chase. When Jax is drawn back to his home town because his father figure, Rick, is dying. This puts a strain on Jax because Chase and the girl he loves, Sammy, are both there. Sammy is the one person with the power to crush Jax. He pines for her but, he is also very dangerous. The demon will hurt hurt her if given the chance. Will being back home destroy Jax? Will the demon's desires become to strong? Will Jax hurt the ones he loves?




    I loved Jax as a character. He was complicated, loving, dangerous, and hot all in one. He has some control over the demon but, not much. The demon has the ability to take over his body at times. He has never truly been happy, not like Chase. Chase has been whoring himself around and living it up his adult life. Jax is the one who lurks in the shadows waiting to feed off violence and anger. I feel like deep down he just wants to be happy. Unfortunately, happiness causes him physical pain and Sam makes him happy. So you can imagine what that works! 




    Jax and Sam have a very different relationship. It's not all unicorns and rainbows. It's real. Demons are dangerous. Jax's demon could seriously hurt Sam. This makes Jax pretty much an ass towards Sam. He wants to push her away. To keep her safe. The book goes back and forth between Jax and Sam's point of view so we get to see how Sam feels about all this too. I was truly heartbroken for her. She loves Jax with all her heart. They have some pretty hot scenes too. I mean like...light your panties on fire hot. To be honest, I had a love/hate relationship with Jax's demon. He came in handy but, also makes Jax's life hell. Sam and Jax will need each other to get through what is coming. I just don't know if they will have a future.




    I really liked this book! I am so curious as to where the story is headed! I so hope we get more of Jax and Sam's story. Things are far from over!

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  • Posted December 31, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    I absolutely loved this! I don¿t know what else to say about wha

    I absolutely loved this! I don’t know what else to say about what Ms. Accardo did with the first book in her new series, The Eternal Balance. Ruined is one part urban fantasy, one part paranormal romance, and all parts written in the age group (or genre) new adult. Love, love, love, LOVE, love, huge amounts of affection, love this book! And even despite some formulaic plots devices, there were enough twists and turmoil to the story to keep me engaged to the very end. Strong characters never hurt, either :)

    Told in dual POV (my fave), we first meet Jax, one half of identical twins raised by their uncle but who are also direct descendants of Cain. As in Cain and Abel. As in Cain, the first murderer because he killed his brother and lived with a mark on his soul after that. That mark is so heavy and burdensome that it has carried on for generations through Cain’s line. It doesn’t show up every generation but unfortunately for Jax, it decided to show up on his soul.

    This mark made Jax a complex and actually a very endearing character. I personally loved where Ms. Accardo went with Jax and his “inner turmoil” between being good and being evil. Jax is hot (duh), fiercely loyal, and protective. Oh, and he wears a dark leather trench which is just, um…. yeah, I kind of like that (I’m so easy sometimes). Unfortunately, it reminded me of a series I’ve read in the past so that kept popping into my brain as I read. But Ms. Accardo DEFINITELY made Jax’s story her (and his) own.

    But before I get to the world building, I must tell you about Samantha. She was the perfect “foil”, err love interest for Jax. I loved that we have a wild child with issues. Growing up, she and Jax were always getting in trouble and it wasn’t Jax dragging her into trouble. Apparently Samantha stole a cop or sheriff’s car when she was a teenager and never got caught. Gotta love that!

    NOW to the world building… I really loved what Ms. Accardo did with the Cain and Abel story. I really thought I knew what was going to happen and that I had everything figured out – I get cocky sometimes when I read, think I know everything (ha!). Yes, I guessed a twist or two but the reveals at the very end I never saw coming. Oh, there is one character that was such an awesome surprise; I can’t say anymore!!! I ate that tasty humble pie up and it was tasty (mmmm). Actually, I liked that I was getting things right and still surprised at the end.

    You’re probably thinking, “why isn’t this a 5 star review, crazy lady?” I think it was my personal frustration with not getting more character development from a particular character. I know it’s an author’s prerogative to decide what we need to know; hell, they’re writing the book. But I just wanted to know more! There are also some “things” written into the plot (I have no other way to say that!) that I’m not a fan of and I find formulaic and used too often for tension and to keep the reader interested. Personal UGH! You may not mind it but I do. Yes, I’m being cryptic but if I told what it was, then I’d be giving away the story and I don’t particularly want to get shot (as in shoot the messenger… I hate to explain my jokes). :)

    But a 4 star review still means I LOVED it and I WILL be continuing this series. There was just too much greatness going for this series for me to be turned off! And the ending… yeah, I’ll definitely be coming back for more Jax and Sammy (I loved that Jax called her that).

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  • Posted December 30, 2013

    Ruined is a smoking hot, angst-filled read. It¿s a love story, b

    Ruined is a smoking hot, angst-filled read. It’s a love story, but its also a hate story; no, but really its a
    love it story. OK, even I'm confused reading that. Read Ruined, you will get it, trust me. Its pretty damn
    good.

    Cain and Abel's descendants are still atoning for Cain's original sin. If you don't know Cain and Abel's
    story from the bible, don't fret, Jus Accardo will catch you up. Anyway, every few generation's Cain's
    descendant is born with a demon inside of him. Total bummer because life with a demon stuck inside 
    you is violent and usually short. Jax Flynn is the newest vessel for Cain's demon. Jax has a messed
    up family history and an equally disastrous life.

    Ruined begins with Jax returning to his hometown. Samantha Merrick is the girl next door, literally. She
    is part of the reason Jax skipped town. He loves her, but his demon just isn't having it. Jax isn't exactly
    a shining beacon of control; so he splits to spare Sam any undoubted misery he would cause. Chase,
    Jax's brother, and the Abel to his Cain, is the other reason. He's a total jerk and Jax's demon
    absolutely loathes him. I don't want to tell any one too much of the plot in my review, just wanted to lay
    down the basics.

    Understand this: There is so much sexual tension in this book that you would literally need a
    chainsaw to cut through it. I, like all living, breathing hot-blooded women love me some sexy tension.
    After attempted kiss and insane sexual fantasy number eight or something,  I got really impatient. This
    ain't Twilight though folks, so don't get it twisted. There is eventually follow through and it's worth the
    pain. 

    Ruined is gritty, sexy, full of colorful language and it doesn't shy away from the ugly side of life. Jus
    Accardo is witty and writes awesome banter; if anything, I just became a huge fan of her and will be
    reading her other books ASAP. Ruined got off to such a rip-roaring start; a bad-ss take on a Bible story,
    dark characters and a really promising plot. That is a Betty Crocker caliber recipe for awesome if I have
    ever seen one. I found that in the middle-ish it started to really fizzle and become redundant for me. But
    that's only my opinion Ruined is earning all the good reviews that its getting, it really is pretty awesome.
    I will absolutely, most definitely be waiting for the next in this series, I cannot wait to read more of Jax
    and Sam's story.
    3.5 of 5 stars

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  • Posted December 30, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    I¿m just gonna come out and say it: If you have even the smalles

    I’m just gonna come out and say it: If you have even the smallest soft spot for Daemon and Katy, you are gonna LOVE Jax and Sam. I’ve read some of Jus Accardo’s other novels and RUINED is by far my favorite. A twisted plot, realistic characters, and some major ‘kiss or punch’ chemistry that keeps you flipping pages.

    Jax, a descendant of Cain, is one serious dude to be reckoned with. With a violence craving demon living inside him, Jax has to go to some serious ends in order to keep the demon fed and satisfied. If not, the demon brings the pain on Jax.

    Samantha is just your average nineteen year-old. Her parents were killed in a home invasion, her aunt is a wannabe match-maker, and her job at the local dive isn’t exactly stellar. College didn’t work out either. After a random almost mugging after a party, Sam headed home with a bucket of insecurities.

    What I liked most about RUINED was the ease of familiarity between the characters. These characters really knew each other, and nothing was forced between them. Sam, Jax, and Chase (Jax’s polar opposite but equally hot twin) all grew up together. Sam and Jax were inseparable after her parents were killed. Jax may or may not have been the cause of Sam getting into trouble as a kid, the mischievous and bored-in-a-small-town kind of trouble. Because of that, Jax was shunned most of his life. Chase, on the other hand, was the clean-cut golden boy everyone loved. Except Sam. Her heart would always belong to Jax.

    When Jax turns up back home, the heat cranks into sweltering between Sam and Jax. She wants him in all the right ways, but she also wants to junk-punch him for being a total insensitive prick to her. But that’s the only way to keep Sammy safe, unharmed, and away from the monster that resides in Jax.

    RUINED started with a little more backstory than I would normally like, but when it planted its feet in, it grabbed me by the hand and wouldn’t let go. The fast pace kept me flipping the digital pages and provided for a twist that I (sheepishly enough) didn’t really see coming. And that’s fantabulous in my book. Pardon the pun.

    I’m not familiar with the story of Cain and Abel, but RUINED lays down enough ground rules that the average non-church going Jane Doe can follow along. The hot chemistry between Jax and Sam scorched to singeing, but kept things nice and clean so I didn’t feel the need to hide in a ’50 Shades of Good Lord’ way. Very tasteful, Jus! I bow before thee.

    Of course, Jus leaves us with a bit of a cliffhanger and I for one cannot wait for the next. So keep her comin’ Jus! RUINED was a deeply satisfying read full of an interesting plot, super cool characters, and hot chemistry. In other words, the trifecta of awesome!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 30, 2013

    Ruined was a stay-up-all-night read filled with romance, banter,

    Ruined was a stay-up-all-night read filled with romance, banter, violence, and angry, hot demons. It was pretty good! I admit I was nervous about reading it because I'm wary of the turn most New Adult books seem to be taking lately, but reading this does remind me why I like reading good NA.

    ROMANCE

    It's a little like a hate-then-love romance, but the "hate" part wasn't so much hate, but more anger. Jax and Sam already had an established connection, so they already had feelings (and were aware of them) when the book began. However, Jax felt like he was too dangerous to Sam—like he would end up hurting her badly—and fought those feelings and tried to push them away in order as protection. So, the romance had the banter and the struggle-with-feelings like many hate-to-love romances seem to have, and I loved it! The two had a lot of chemistry, and the struggle with their feelings for each other and other other roadblocks to their relationship kept things pretty interesting.

    BACKGROUND

    Ruined is demon book. It's one out of many I've read and enjoyed, but what was cool about this book in particular was the Cain and Abel background. Jax was cursed, which meant that there was a demon taking residence in his body his entire life. He grew up with a thirst for violence because the demon was part of him and was under a constant struggle to keep his impulses under control so he wouldn't hurt the ones he loved. I really liked the concept behind the curse and the demons of this book, though I would've liked to see more background to it—more explanation and details in the origination of the curse. Maybe that'll happen in the sequel. The whole Cain and Abel tie-in was really cool, and not something I had ever seen before, and it would be nice to see more of it.

    OVERALL

    Ruined was a pretty good read. It's probably the only NA demon book I've ever read, which is refreshing. It was nice to read a good, interesting paranormal NA. The romance was a really good one—I liked the couple from the very beginning—and so were the concepts. I do recommend it if you don't mind darker books (with a lot of violence and cuss words—lots of them). I liked this quite a bit and I'm looking forward to the sequel!

    Source: I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

    ~Written by Kaitlin, blogger at Reading is My Treasure

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  • Posted December 30, 2013

    Great start to a seriesI have read only one book by Jus Accrado

    Great start to a seriesI have read only one book by Jus Accrado and that was Darker Days and I loved it. Ruined is NOTHING like Darker Days. First I believe its considered New Adult and maybe Pararomance and it’s amazing! I loved it from start to finish, who wouldn’t? A man who was born with a daemon and has to basically share his body? I loved that we have basically a Cain and Able story going on because it centers around two twin brothers (one Bad one good) and their hatred/ love for one another. Throw in some violence and a snarky yet lovable Women and you get the making of an awesome series.
    The book is in dual POV’s from Jax to Samantha, the girl who has known both brothers since they were both young. One is her best friend and one she has loved since she was fourteen (guess which one). Jax is the epitome of town bad boy, if something bad happened it was usually him, or so the town thinks.




    “The sound of your voice makes me sick. I want to physically rip you to shreds each time you open your gooddamned trap. You’ve always been careless, but are you suicidal too?”




    When they were kids they were best friends and as they got older something shifted and they fell in love, but when Jax left it all shifted.
    Samantha is in hiding from something that happened while at college and is still battling her own daemons and when Jax comes back to town and it seems as though whatever made her run from college is following her.
    The chemistry between Jax and Samantha was one part Snarky, one part shared history and ALL hot. When it was both of them they burned!I did know going into it that it was part of a series, so I should have been prepared for the ending, but nooo, I wasn’t. I wasn’t prepared for it to end; I actually put down my Kindle for a whole day in order to live in this world a little bit longer. Paranormal romance has to be my number one favorite read because of all the twist it can take and this one did not disappoint with those. Jus has another hit on her hands and I cannot wait until the second book comes out. I will say it’s not a cliffhanger but you still want to have the second book like, NOW.

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