Stone Cold Touch (Dark Elements Series #2)

Stone Cold Touch (Dark Elements Series #2)

4.7 35
by Jennifer L. Armentrout

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Every touch has its price

Layla Shaw is trying to pick up the pieces of her shattered life—no easy task for a seventeen-year-old who's pretty sure things can't get worse. Her impossibly gorgeous best friend, Zayne, is forever off-limits thanks to the mysterious powers of her soul-stealing kiss. The Warden clan that has always protected her is suddenly


Every touch has its price

Layla Shaw is trying to pick up the pieces of her shattered life—no easy task for a seventeen-year-old who's pretty sure things can't get worse. Her impossibly gorgeous best friend, Zayne, is forever off-limits thanks to the mysterious powers of her soul-stealing kiss. The Warden clan that has always protected her is suddenly keeping dangerous secrets. And she can barely think about Roth, the wickedly hot demon prince who understood her in ways no one else could.

But sometimes rock bottom is only the beginning. Because suddenly Layla's powers begin to evolve, and she's offered a tantalizing taste of what has always been forbidden. Then, when she least expects it, Roth returns, bringing news that could change her world forever. She's finally getting what she always wanted, but with hell literally breaking loose and the body count adding up, the price may be higher than Layla is willing to pay….

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
In this sequel to Armentrout's White Hot Kiss, half-demon Layla, daughter of Lilith (yes, that Lilith), is mourning the loss of her boyfriend, Roth (i.e. Astaroth, Prince of Hell), who sacrificed himself to save the world. All she has left of him is a snake named Bambi, whose habit of eating dangerous people comes in handy. While Layla's demonic side makes her apt to soul-suck anyone she kisses, she is also half-Warden, a race of demon-destroying gargoyles, which gives her an identity crisis and an uncomfortable position in the household of her adoptive Warden family. Just as it seems that Zayne, Layla's foster brother and former crush, can heal her broken heart, Roth reappears, along with a series of strange happenings. Students attack other students, demons are hatching in the school basement, a wraith-creating Lilin has been born, and Layla can't see auras anymore—but she can kiss without killing. Series fans will appreciate the quick pace as Layla's attentions vacillate between an impossibly gorgeous Warden and an equally hot demon prince. Ages 14–up. Agent: Kevan Lyon, Marsal Lyon Literary Agency. (Oct.)
From the Publisher
"Armentrout balances suspense and romance, spicing it up with Roth's one-liners and Layla's wry inner commentary, all adding welcome humor...Demonic fun." -Kirkus Reviews

"The second in the Dark Elements series is an absolutely phenomenal, edge-of-your-seat thrill ride....arguably some of Armentrout's best work to date, and what just might be the prolific author's best series....chock full of nonstop action and fast-paced drama. This is a book you'll be hard pressed to put down." -RT Book Reviews (Top Pick)

VOYA, December 2014 (Vol. 37, No. 5) - Lindsey Dawson
Seventeen-year-old Layla Shaw cannot escape the pain as she mourns the loss of Roth, the extremely hot demon prince who sacrificed himself to save her from the fiery pits of Hell. When Roth shows up alive and well, Layla discovers that his feelings for her might not be as genuine as she thought. As she struggles to ignore her still-present lust for the demon, new romantic and dangerous developments appear in her relationship with the gorgeous Zayne, her angelic best friend and long-time crush. Layla, an angel-demon hybrid, has lived safely under the roof of the Wardens, a breed of angels whose purpose is to rid the earth of demons; however, as she uncovers the truth of her heritage, she realizes that she might be the one causing the mysterious deaths of those around her. In this third installment of The Dark Elements series, Armentrout provides essential elements from the first book that give readers enough background without being too repetitive. Themes of love, lust, and rivalry continue to take shape as Layla becomes even more entrenched in the love triangle involving herself, Zayne, and Roth. The author presents the age-old plot of good versus evil in a new, engaging way; the world of the Wardens and demons is filled with surprising twists and turns as the lines of good and evil are not as clearly defined as one might expect. Overall, the fast-paced story engages the reader in a complex battle to fight the greater evil that just might reside in Layla. Armentrout uses her experience in the paranormal romance genre to create a captivating story that will have teen readers excitedly anticipating the next book in the series. Reviewer: Lindsey Dawson; Ages 12 to 18.
Kirkus Reviews
The saga of a girl who's a hybrid of demon and Warden, the gargoyle-type creatures who fight demons, continues (White Hot Kiss, 2014). Layla is torn between very different heartthrobs: Zayne, the Warden boy with whom she's lived for most of her life, and Roth, the demon Crown Prince of Hell. It's complicated. If she kisses Zayne, her true love, she might accidentally inhale his soul. Although Roth tells her he doesn't really care for her, he continues to attend school, wisecracking his way through every scene. The story kicks off when Layla's snake tattoo, Bambi, eats a visiting Warden. Worse, Layla and Roth find evidence that the foretold demonic Lilin indeed has entered their high school and appears to be taking the souls of students. While she's investigating the Lilin, Layla finally begins a real relationship with Zayne. As the plot thickens, she begins to doubt herself. Could she have some connection with the Lilin? Armentrout balances suspense and romance, spicing it up with Roth's one-liners and Layla's wry inner commentary, all adding welcome humor. Of course, everyone involved has a hotness level that would shame supermodels. The almost-sex scenes provide even more punch, and the book ends with a nice zinger. Demon Roth again stands out as the character with the mostest. Demonic fun. (Paranormal romance. 14-18)

Product Details

Publication date:
Dark Elements Series , #2
Sales rank:
Product dimensions:
5.30(w) x 8.20(h) x 1.30(d)
Age Range:
14 - 17 Years

Read an Excerpt

Ten seconds after Mrs. Cleo moseyed on into biology class, flipped on the projector and turned off the lights, Bambi decided she was no longer comfortable where she was currently curled around my waist.

Sliding along my stomach, the very active demonic snake tattoo was not a fan of sitting still for any length of time, especially not during a boring lecture on the food chain. I stiffened, resisting the urge to giggle like a hyena as she cruised up between my breasts and rested her diamond-shaped head on my shoulder.

Five more seconds passed while Stacey stared at me, her brows raised. I forced a tight smile, knowing Bambi wasn't done yet. Nope. Her tongue flicked out, tickling the side of my neck.

I clamped my hand over my mouth, stifling a giggle as I squirmed in my seat.

"Are you on drugs?" Stacey asked in a low voice as she brushed thick bangs out of her dark eyes. "Or is my left boob hanging out and saying hello to the world? Because as my best friend, you're obligated to tell me."

Even though I knew her boob was in her shirt, or at least I hoped so since her V-neck sweater was pretty low cut, my gaze dipped as I lowered my hand. "Your boob is fine. I'm just…antsy."

She wrinkled her nose at me before returning her attention to the front of the classroom. Drawing in a deep breath, I prayed that Bambi would remain where she was for the rest of the class. With her on my skin, it was like having a mad case of the tics. Twitching every five seconds wasn't going to help my popularity, or lack thereof. Luckily, with the much cooler weather and Thanksgiving fast approaching, I could get away with wearing turtlenecks and long sleeves, which hid Bambi from sight.

Well, as long as she didn't decide to crawl up on my face. Something she liked to do whenever Zayne was around. He was an absolutely gorgeous Warden—a member of the race of creatures who could look human at will, but whose true form was what humans called gargoyles. Wardens were tasked with protecting mankind, hunting what went bump in the night…and during the day. I'd grown up with Zayne and had nursed one heck of a puppy-dog crush on him for years.

Bambi shifted, her tail tickling the side of my stomach.

I had no idea how Roth had dealt with Bambi crawling all over him.

My breath caught as a deep, unforgiving pang hit me in the chest. Without thinking, I reached for the ring with the cracked stone—the ring that had once held the blood of my mother, the Lilith—dangling from my necklace. Feeling the cool metal between my fingers was calming. Not because of the familial bond, since I really didn't claim a relationship with my mother, but because, along with Bambi, it was my last and only link to Astaroth, the Crown Prince of Hell, who had done the most undemonic thing.

I lost myself the moment I found you.

Roth had sacrificed himself by being the one to hold Paimon, the bastard responsible for wanting to unleash an especially nasty race of demons, in a devil's trap meant to send its captive to Hell. Zayne had been doing the honors of keeping Paimon from escaping, but Roth…he'd taken Zayne's place.

And now he was in the fiery pits.

Leaning forward, I propped my elbows on the cool table, completely unaware of what Mrs. Cleo was droning on about. Tears burned the back of my throat as I stared at the empty chair in front of me that used to belong to Roth. I closed my eyes.

Two weeks. Three hundred and thirty-six hours, give or take a few, had passed since that night in the old gymnasium and not a second had gotten easier. It hurt as if it had happened an hour ago and I wasn't sure if a month or even a year from now would be any different.

One of the hardest parts was all the lies. Stacey and Sam had asked a hundred questions when Roth hadn't returned after the night we had located the Lesser Key of Solomon (the ancient book that had the answers to everything we'd needed to know about my mother) and had been caught by Abbot (the leader of the Warden clan in D.C. who had adopted me as a young girl). They'd stopped eventually, but it was still another secret I was keeping from them, two of my closest friends.

Despite our friendship, neither of them knew what I was—half Warden, half demon. And neither of them realized that Roth hadn't just been out with mono or changed schools. But sometimes it was easier to think of him that way—to tell myself he was just at another school instead of where he was.

The burn moved into my chest, much like the low simmer in my veins that was always present. The need to take a soul, the curse my mother had passed on to me, hadn't diminished one bit over the past two weeks. If anything, it had seemed to increase. The ability to draw the soul out of any creature that had one was why I hadn't ever gotten close to a boy before. Not until Roth had come along.

Given that he was a demon, the pesky soul problem was a moot point. He didn't have one. And unlike Abbot and almost all of the Warden clan, even Zayne, Roth hadn't cared that I was a mixed breed. He had…he'd accepted me as I was.

Scrubbing my palms over my eyes, I bit the inside of my cheek. When I'd found my repaired and cleaned-up necklace—the one Petr, a Warden who turned out to be my half brother, had broken during his attack on me—at Roth's apartment, I'd clung to the hope that Roth wasn't in the pits after all. That he'd somehow escaped, but with each passing day, that hope flickered out like a candle in the middle of a hurricane.

I believed more than anything in this world that if Roth could've come back to me, he would have by now, and that meant.

When my chest squeezed painfully, I opened my eyes and slowly let out the breath I'd been holding. The room was a little blurry through the haze of unshed tears. I blinked a couple of times as I slumped back in my seat. Whatever was on the slide projector made no sense to me. Something to do with the circle of life? No, that was The Lion King. I was so going to fail this class. Figuring I should at least attempt to take notes, I picked up my pen and—

At the front of the class, the metal legs from a chair scraped across the floor, screeching loudly. A boy exploded out of his chair as if someone had lit a fire under his butt. A faint yellow glow surrounded him—his aura. I was the only one who could see it, but it sputtered erratically, blinking in and out. Seeing people's auras—a reflection of their souls—was nothing new for me. They were all kinds of colors, sometimes a mixture of more than two, but I'd never seen one waver like that before. I glanced around the room and the mixture of auras glimmered faintly.

What the Hell?

Mrs. Cleo's hand was frozen above the projector as she frowned. "Dean McDaniel, what in the world are you—"

Dean spun on his heel, facing the two guys sitting behind him. They were leaning back in their seats, their arms crossed and lips curved up in identical smirks. Dean's mouth was pressed into a thin line and his face was flushed. My mouth dropped open as he planted one hand on the white tabletop and slammed his other fist into the jaw of the kid behind him. The fleshy smack echoed through the classroom, followed by several surprised gasps.

Holy granola bar!

I sat up straight as Stacey slapped her hands on our table. "Holy shit balls for Sunday dinner," she whispered, gaping as the boy Dean had punched slumped to the left and hit the floor like a bag of potatoes.

I didn't know Dean very well. Hell, I wasn't sure if I'd spoken more than a handful of words to him during my four years in high school, but he was quiet and average, tall and slender, much like Sam.

Totally not the kind of kid who'd be voted most likely to knock another guy—a much bigger guy—into next week.

"Dean!" shouted Mrs. Cleo, her ample chest rising as she rushed to the wall, flipping the overhead lights on. "What are—?"

The other guy shot up like an arrow, hands clenching into meaty fists at his sides. "What the Hell is wrong with you?" He rounded the table, shrugging out of his zipped hoodie. "You want some of this?"

Stuff always got real when the clothes started to come off.

Dean snickered as he stalked to the aisle. Chairs screeched as students moved out of the way. "Oh, I'm about to get me some of that."

"Boy fight!" Stacey exclaimed as she dug around in her bag, pulling out her cell phone. Several other students were doing the same thing. "I so have to get this on camera."

"Boys! Stop it right now." Mrs. Cleo smacked her hand against the wall, hitting the intercom wired directly to the front office. A beep sounded and she turned to it frantically. "I need the security guard in room two-oh-four immediately!"

Dean launched himself at his opponent, tackling him to the floor. Arms flew as they rolled into the legs of a nearby table. In the back of the classroom, we were safe, but Stacey and I stood up anyway. A shiver coursed over my skin as Bambi shifted without warning, flicking her tail across my stomach.

Stacey stretched up on the tips of her boots, apparently needing a better angle for her phone. "This is."

"Bizarre?" I supplied, flinching as the boy got a good hit in, knocking Dean's head back.

She arched a brow at me. "I was going to go with awesome."

"But they're—" I jumped as the classroom door swung open and banged into the wall.

Security officers swarmed the class, heading straight for the melee. One beefy guy wrapped his arms around Dean, dragging him off the other student as Mrs. Cleo buzzed around the room like a nervous hummingbird, clutching her tacky beaded necklace with both hands.

A middle-aged security guard knelt beside the boy Dean had punched. Only then did I realize the boy hadn't stirred once since hitting the floor. A trickle of unease, having nothing to do with the way Bambi was moving again, formed in my belly as the guard leaned over the prone boy, placing his head near his chest.

The guard jerked back, reaching for the microphone on his shoulder. His face was white as the paper in my notebook. "I need an EMT immediately dispatched. I have a teenage male, approximately seventeen or eighteen years of age. Visible bruising along the skull. He's not breathing."

"Oh my God," I whispered, clutching Stacey's arm.

A hush descended over the room, quelling the excited chatter. Mrs. Cleo stopped by her desk, her jowls jiggling silently. Stacey sucked in a breath as she lowered her phone.

The silence following the urgent call was broken when Dean threw back his head and laughed as the other security guard dragged him from the classroom.

Stacey tucked her shoulder-length black hair back behind her ears. She hadn't touched the slice of pizza on her plate or her can of soda. Neither had I. She was probably thinking along the same lines that I was. Principal Blunt and the guidance counselor I'd never really paid attention to had given all the students in the class the option to go home.

I didn't have a ride. Morris, the clan's chauffeur, handyman and all-around awesome guy, was still on the no-ride list with me since, the last time we'd been in a car together, a possessed cabdriver had tried to play chicken with our vehicles. And I didn't want to wake up Zayne or Nicolai—for the most part, full-blooded Wardens slept deeply during the day, entombed in their hard shells. And Stacey didn't want to be home with her baby brother. So here we were, in the cafeteria.

But neither of us had an appetite.

"I'm officially traumatized," she said, taking a deep breath. "Seriously."

"It's not like the guy is dead," Sam replied around a mouthful of pizza. His wire-frame glasses slipped to the tip of his nose. Curly brown hair flopped over his forehead. His soul, a faint mixture of yellow and blue, flickered just like everyone else's had since this morning, winking in and out as if it was playing peekaboo with me. "I heard he was revived in the ambulance."

"That still doesn't change the fact that we saw someone get punched in the face so hard that they died right in front of us," she insisted, eyes wide. "Or are you missing the point?"

Sam swallowed the bite of pizza. "How do you know he really died? Just because a wannabe police officer says that someone's not breathing doesn't mean that's true." He glanced over at my plate. "You gonna eat that?"

I shook my head at him, sort of dumbfounded. "It's all yours." A second later, he snatched the pizza with the little pepperoni cubes off my plate. His gaze flickered up to mine. "Are you okay?" I asked.

He nodded as he munched away. "Sorry. I know I don't sound very sympathetic."

"Ya think?" Stacey muttered drily.

A dull ache flared behind my eyes as I reached for my soda. I needed caffeine. I also needed to figure out what the Hell was up with everyone's auras doing the wonky thing. The colorful shading around a human represented what kind of soul they were rocking: white for an utterly pure soul, pastels were the most common and usually indicated a good soul, and the darker the colors got, the more questionable the status of one's soul became. And if a human didn't have that telltale halo around him, that meant he was on Team No Soul.

I.e., he was a demon.

I wasn't doing much tagging anymore—another nifty ability I had thanks to my mixed heritage. If I touched a demon, it was equivalent to sticking a neon sign on their body, which made it easier for Wardens to search them out.

Well, it didn't work on Upper Level demons. Not much did.

I didn't stop because of what had happened with Paimon and then being forbidden to tag. Abbot had ungrounded me for life after the night in the gymnasium, but it felt wrong to randomly tag demons, especially now that I knew many of them might be harmless. When I did tag, I went for the Posers, since they were dangerous and had a habit of biting people, and left the Fiends alone.

And truthfully, the change in my tagging routine was all thanks to Roth.

"It's just that those two idiots were probably messing with Dean," Sam continued as he finished off the pizza in a nanosecond. "People snap."

"People usually don't have fists that could be considered lethal weapons," Stacey retorted.

Meet the Author

# 1 New York Times and USA TODAY bestselling author Jennifer L. Armentrout lives in Martinsburg, West Virginia with her husband and her Jack Russell, Loki. Jennifer writes young adult paranormal, science fiction, fantasy, and contemporary romance. She also writes adult and New Adult romance under the name J. Lynn. Find her on Twitter @JLArmentrout or become a fan on Facebook and Goodreads.

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Stone Cold Touch 4.7 out of 5 based on 2 ratings. 35 reviews.
WulfLuva More than 1 year ago
Be still my Roth-loving heart! JLA can I marry you? Just so I can have all of your sexy boy-toy characters close by? Does that sound a little too obsessive? Well, good! It needs to sound as obsessive as possible, because this series is incredible!!! (Warning: There will be LOTS of exclamation points, capital letters, and a heaping load of praise in this review. You have been warned.) I have to be honest, the last JLA book I read, Opposition (Lux #5), had me disappointed. JLA is a magnificent writer, but it wasn’t up to her standards, in my opinion. So when I started reading this book I was a little apprehensive. Was she going to ruin Roth for me? Layla? The Warden and demon concept in general? Nope. She exceeded any expectations I may have had. Many times over. Layla is just as fun, witty, snarky, goofy, and lovable as she was in White Hot Kiss, perhaps even more so. I never got frustrated with her character or bored hearing her thoughts. Even when Layla did some things that I wish she wouldn’t have done (Stupid Zayne and his nice boy image.), I understood that Layla was exploring herself and her sexuality after being denied love and contact with people for so long. Didn’t mean I had to like it, but I understood it. I think it’s amazing that JLA could write a love triangle that isn’t just, “Oh poor me, I have two hot guys to choose from, which one should I kiss?” Instead JLA put together a love triangle that has complications, after all, Layla’s been in love with Zayne for years, and now that Layla’s spreading her wings, Zayne may be waking up to that fact, and liking it. And Roth isn’t just a (very, very, very) sexy bad boy; he’s Layla’s chance to live a part of her life that’s been repressed for years. Layla has to choose, not between Zayne or Roth, but between keeping things the same and staying in the shadows, or actually letting the demon half of her out. I’m still Team Roth though. Roth + Layle = My OTP The plot of the book was fast-paced. There was no chapter that dragged me down. Of course, I’ve never had a YA book by JLA drag on and on and on. But back to the point, this book flew by way too fast for me. I want so much more, even though the ending was fairly satisfying—as much as the ending of the second book in a series can be, anyway. I had no idea where this book was going. I mean, of course, I knew the problems with the big, bad, that the character are having, but the family problems Layla had threw me for a loop. I can’t wait to see how this plays out in the future. All in all, I’m in love. Both with Roth, and with Ms. Armentrout herself. Jennifer, if you won’t marry me, could you at least give me pages and pages of your sexy bad boys’ descriptions. Abs, hair, eyes, arms—you could describe their IQ’s and I’d be over the moon. Thanks. Oh, and can you sneak me an ARC of Every Last Breath? No? Aww… 5/5 stars *Note: I purchased this book for myself.
Brooke-The-Cover-Contessa More than 1 year ago
I want to thank Harlequin Teen for providing me with a copy of this book at BEA to read and give an honest review. Receiving the book for free has in no way altered my opinion or review. I am a huge JLA fan. I read anything she puts out there. So it should be no different that I have picked up this series. And since I liked the prequel and first book so much, it should be no surprise that I wanted to continue on. After all, I needed to know what happened. WARNING: IF YOU HAVE NOT READ THE FIRST BOOK THERE WILL BE SPOILERS SO STOP HERE. This book picks up pretty much where the first book left off. Layla is without Roth, as he's been pulled to the depths of hell. So it's no surprise she starts to lean on Zayne more than ever. And slowly things begin to unravel between them. The tension rises as they realize there is more than just the friendship they have always sort. Not a big surprise since Layla has always had a thing for Zayne. And, while Zayne has always acted as a big brother to her, you could tell there was more th his feelings than what he let on. So watching their new relationship blossom was nice. What? You say. How can they possibly be together? You say. She'll suck the life out of him. You say. Well, yes, you would think so. But oddly enough, it doesn't happen and there's a reason for it (which I won't reveal because then that would spoil it all). Needless to say, things get a bit convoluted and turned upside down. And Layla becomes a bit of an enemy to those around her. But she is saved by someone we've all grown to love and hate at the same time (I won't reveal who). As per Armentrout's usual, she keeps you on your toes with this one infusing tension and intensity throughout. There's action, romance, and humor. It's an easy flow of words. I will say this was a slower read for me than the first one which I tore through. I just didn't see this as a page turner, but I think that made it better because I got to savor it for a longer time. I still can't really decide which team I'm on, either. Both boys give Layla something she needs. I wish they could be fused into one! I definitely want to know what happens in the final installment of this series. I'd also love to see novellas from both Zayne and Roth. I need to be in their heads and see what they are thinking! Especially Zayne. I think Layla really gets Roth, so her presentation of him seems spot on. But Zayne is so much more closed off. He certainly reminds me of Aiden from Armentrout's Covenant series (and we did get a chance to see things from Aiden's POV in a novella).  My one issue with this book is that I feel like the lines between Armentrout's different paranormals are blurring. I feel like the characters are very similar and the catchphrases are often overused. But overall it doesn't take away from how much I love this series and how much I want to have the final installment NOW!
Anonymous 14 days ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
First off, I found myself screaming at the end, because I was so shocked, and because there was a cliffhanger, and I can't afford the third book right now. You will not be dissapointed with this book! This is the second book in The Dark Elements Series, and even better than the first book. Once I started reading it, I couldn't put it down, but my nook died, and I hoped to God thatmy nook lasted, because it has been acting up. I still love paper books way better for this reason. Anyway,when I had to put it down,it was as if I felt so broken, because I couldn't finish it. I couldn't stop thinking about it at all, and now even if I start a new book, I won't be able to stop thinking about it at all. Yes this book was that great, and yes I now want to read everthing from this author,and yes I crave more. I won't add spoilers, you will just have to see for yourself just how amazing this book is. Don't wait too long to read this series, it is one of the most unique, and best I have read this year.
joilgc More than 1 year ago
Saptarshi More than 1 year ago
Well first of all, I can't believe that I completely forgot to write my review for this book when it was first released and I read it right away! But I guess it's a good thing in a way since it gave me the excuse to re-read Stone Cold Touch. And just as I remembered, this book was simply fantastic! Every book that I have read by JLA has always been amazing and this was no different. It was filled with humor, action, and of course romance. I loved how much Layla has grown in this book, and of course our favorite male heroes, Roth and Zayne! Roth was Roth. I'll admit, at first I was confused by his actions but it's clear throughout the story that he really cares for Layla. Zayne on the other hand...he totally took over in this book and really upped his game when it came to Layla. But unfortunately for him, no matter how great he is, I am still firmly on team Roth! ;) I loved the first book, White Hot Kiss, but this book, it was over the top awesome!! From the minute I started reading I was hooked. There were so many twists and turns and so many new surprises. I'd love to tell you what they are, but then I'd be spoiling the story, so you are going to have to find out for yourself. My most favorite thing about JLA's books is always the humor. No matter what the situation is or how serious it is, there's always something that makes me laugh! I absolutely loved this book, and seriously if you haven't started this series yet, you really need to do so! Now I just have to wait for three more days before I can get my hands on Every Last Breath. I can't wait to see how the story ends but I am also kind of dreading it since it's going to be the last book in the trilogy.
Goldenfurproductions More than 1 year ago
MY THOUGHTS After reading White Hot Kiss, I needed to read this book immediately! I was not disappointed! This book is just as fantastic as the first!! Layla is trying to recover from the crazy events from the last book, but, of course, things aren't over. Layla's powers have been changing and she can't even see souls any more. Add in the fact that mysterious things kept happening when she's around and her classmates are acting more crazy than usually, and something is happening. Along with this, Layla and Zayne's relationship seems to be turning beyond friendship, despite how forbidden it is. Then, the return of Roth adds more questions, but he also carries answers to an evil that has been unleashed from hell. Now, they have to find out who is causing all of this to happen, but they may be closer to the truth than they think... One of the 'issues' that I had with this book was that I absolutely couldn't put it down. I would think "I really need to start my homework after this chapter", then I finish the chapter and it ends in a way that I can't possibly stop!! I MUST KNOW MORE!! Friends, that is a mark of an amazing book. So much happens, the characters are so frexing amazing, and the entire book is edge-of-your-seat. Don't even get me started on the last hundred so pages. Boy, do things get nuts.  Now, the romance gets more pointy in this book. Last book had a more Roth focus, this one starts to have a focus on Zayne. Let me say that I have absolutely no problem with the love triangle. It's done well and let's face it, both guys are hot and swoon-worthy. I honestly can't pick a side! Lastly, the ending? I mentioned how fantastic the plot is and how the ending really takes thing up a notch, which brings me to the end... Yep, there's a cliffhanger. You've been warned. IN CONCLUSION I know this review is all of the place, but my excuses are that this book was so mind-numbingly amazing, that I don't know how to use words and I want you guys to to be as surprised in this book as I was. Overall, this was a fantastic sequel and I'm impatiently waiting for the next book!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
So this is my absolute favorite book of all time. I loved the original covers, but this new book cover is just AMAZING. I don't know what it is, it's simple but it's just beautiful.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
!!!SPOILER ALERT!!!! Honestly one of my favorite books ever. In the the first one I was so anti Zayn, but in this book it was nice to see them together. The last few chapters are so fast and intense you almost can't breathe. Love this book, and I'm so exited for the next one TEAM ROTH!!!!!
Angie_Lisle More than 1 year ago
I'm most definitely Team Roth, which is why I read this book - Roth was the only thing from the first book that hooked me.  But... What I imagine happening with a crowned Prince of Hell definitely doesn't happen here. This book is PG compared to my XXX imagination.  What I get is a half-demon/half-warden pretending to be a normal girl leading on two male descendants of angelic beings - an issue that's not resolved at the end of the book so I expect more of the same to come in the third. Maybe Layla will just figure out she needs both blokes and go with a polyamorous relationship - doubtful, but I can dream (what else would I do with all of Roth's references to Stoney *eye brow wiggle*). And, on top of that, there's some major slut-shaming, especially at the start of the book. I don't like the Wardens or their attitudes toward sex. Talk about buzz-kill for my adult-imagination but it is an issue that teenage girls have to come to terms with because there are people with mind-sets like the Wardens who will judge those girls when they become sexually active. Take that as you will - as for me, the attitude makes me hope the Wardens get their butts handed to them by the demons at some point in this series, which encourages me to read the next book.
Skiziks More than 1 year ago
This is a great series, I'm looking forward to book 3 and feel like July is to long to wait!! Team Roth all the way!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Fast and fun. Looking forward to the next one.
Sailon More than 1 year ago
Who wouldn't want a ”wickedly hot demon prince” and an amazingly scintillating Waren, gargoyle, vying for you...a demon/waren half breed. Layla is finally coming into her own just in time for the people she's loved her whole life to turn on her. This is a non-stop, action packed read with an incredible love triangle.  You feel every heart wrenching decision Layla must take. You might say Jennifer L. Armentrout has the Midas touch, this book is pure gold. I completely loved this book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Who knew? Who could have ever knew? Thats all i can say. I am in utter shock right now. READ THE BOOK. READ IT RIGHT NOWWWWWW.
Book_Owl1 More than 1 year ago
If you read the first book, "White Hot Kiss," this book is a must read. Warning: CLIFF HANGER! JLA's perfect and surprising plot twists don't end in book one. 
Lisa-LostInLiterature More than 1 year ago
I was lucky enough to receive a copy of Stone Cold Touch from Jen as the result of a giveaway I won right before she went to BEA. So I’ve had this beauty sitting on my shelf since June, and it’s been TOUCH not to jump right on it! I’ve been so backed up with review books I put a hold on my “just because I want to” books for a bit. Needless to say when it was time for my next splurge book outside of my review copies, I dove right into this puppy. I actually also had the audiobook version, so I ended up bouncing back and forth between the hardcopy and the audio. I actually enjoy doing that from time to time. Oh man, this book was all kinds of crazy! I feel like SO much happened, yet the book flew by for me. And that’s saying a lot since I don’t normally care for books over 350 pages, and this book was way over that. Regardless, I sped right through it, really enjoying it. This is one of those books that’s hard for me to really review without spoilers, but I’ll do my best. As we know, White Hot Kiss ended with a bang. Layla is still torn up over the fact that Roth is stuck in hell. Now, I can’t say I’m 100% team either guy, but I’m definitely leaning more toward Zayne. I KNOW! Most people are Team Roth, and I totally get that… but there’s just something about him that gets on my nerves. Plus I’m a total sucker for friends-turned-lovers types of stories, so I always tend to route for the best friend over the new bad boy. So yeah, I’m Team Zayne (mostly) so I was totally all for him comforting Layla during this difficult time. Then Roth comes back, and… well… he’s not the same stealthy, sexy demon anymore. He’s… well, different. And this is a lot for Layla to swallow. “At the thought of him, knots twisted in my stomach, a mixture of lingering hurt, the vapid bite of confusion…and guilt. My hands curled helplessly in my lap. I hated feeling that way–hated that I was still affected by Roth and that I could feel fault in any of this. He was the one who’d pushed me away…pushed me right into the arms of Zayne, Which were very nice arms, I thought, staring at his biceps. I felt like a total creeper.” I liked that in this book Zayne got to shine a bit more. WHK was mostly about Roth and Layla, whereas in this book we get to see Zayne and Layla’s relationship in quite a bit more detail. Don’t get me wrong, Roth still has a major presence, but I was happy to see more of Zayne and a little less of Roth. Layla is still totally confused about her feelings though, so as you can imagine this is still a love triangle to the highest degree. But really, if you don’t mind them (like I don’t) then it’s really rather entertaining. I find myself going back and forth between Zayne and Roth… though honestly I’m usually Team Zayne. ;) And there were definitely some sexy scenes in this story, ones that made me blush while reading in public. (Like the steamy club scene… trust me, it’s totally blush-worthy.) This book ended with a bag just like WHK, and I honestly don’t know what to expect now with Every Last Breath. All I know is that I WILL be reading it! Another great book from JLA. I know, I know… no surprise there! If you enjoy her books, then you’re likely going to enjoy this one as well. I’m not a big fantasy/paranormal reader at all, but this series keeps me hooked from page to page, book to book.
Sheri_B1975 More than 1 year ago
Originally posted on my blog: Tangled Up In Books --Malice and righteous anger rolled off him in waves. I swear I say this every single time I finish one of her books, but, in the heck does she do it? Every. Single. Freaking. Time! It's like she has enchanted fingers and everything she writes just wraps itself around your heart and I never even have a chance. I pick up her books knowing I'm going to love them the only question I'll have is who...or what in some cases, she's going to have me swooning over next. Yet the deeper I get into this series the more I realize how much it just plain sucks that my version of happily ever after for Layla is depending on all of you out there. The more I think about it the unhappier it makes me. I don't think that I've ever quite had my feelings this invested into a love triangle situation as I have now. I just have to take a deep breath and hope for the best. --An odd smile marked his eerily beautiful face, a contrast to the sullen expression he was wearing before. I'm not even sure where to begin or go with this review next, to have to try to express my feelings on it without going into the spoiler zone. Stone Cold Touch was so hard to read, obviously not because I thought it was a terrible book I freaking loved it! But because of the events that take place within the pages, and I don't just mean the whole Zayne vs Roth dilemma. There were twists and turns that I wasn't expecting. This book was good with keeping me guessing at each turn of the page. There were betrayals that, if I'm being honest here, I saw coming, but they still hurt and made me extremely angry with the individuals involved. So much has happened and the series isn't even over yet. --"You know what I am. I told you. I covet pretty things. I like to take things that aren't mine to have." I had my choice made before I even finished reading White Hot Kiss and so I was extremely nervous about starting this book because I was afraid it could possibly end up swaying or at the very least blurring my decision. This wasn't something I wanted to happen. Thankfully all it did was end up solidifying the choice I had already made. So who am I #TeamZayne or #TeamRoth? Well a few you know for sure. Though if you've read the books and can recognize who the quotes I've placed within this review are referring to then you'll have your answer right there. I like to make things difficult! ;) --"I just want to hold you right now." His voice was gruff. "That's all I want." I think the ending of the book just about did me in. I was crushed. I thought I had it all figured out and boy did I have it figured out wrong. I was so far off it wasn't even funny and it was worse than I could have imagined and breaks my heart. It's made me scared for the final book in the series for more than just the choice of men, now it's also the aftermath. Stone Cold Touch is yet another example of why Jennifer L. Armentrout is my absolute favorite author. Whenever she puts out a new series each book that follows it just gets better and better and it blows me away how much deeper I tumble into the worlds she creates each and every time.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Omg can I rated this higher please!! I love Roth, Bambi, kittens, Layla ...ok ok i just LOVE this BOOK!!! I had chills so many times through out this book!! Cant wait till the next one.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This series has been worth every penny!
Livlovesbooks More than 1 year ago
'Holy granola bar!' as Layla mentally exclaims in reaction to a crazy classroom scene that occurs early on in this wonderfully entertaining second Dark Elements novel. That pretty much sums up how I felt about everything that happened.  There were so many draw dropping and what next moments. I was guessing at the cause of the change in Layla’s powers. I was bummed by the distance between her and Roth. And then I was incredibly frustrated by her growing physical closeness with Zayne which shouldn't have been possible.  I simply could not accept Layla with Zayne, no matter how sweet and sincere he was. Layla’s soul stealing ability automatically made me write off any future with Zayne in White Hot Kiss. In Stone Cold Touch, Layla does have an interesting change in her powers that allow her to explore a more physical relationship with Zayne. But my heart had already been won over by Roth early on and my conviction that he and Layla belonged together didn’t waiver. Zayne’s sudden honesty about his feelings for Layla could not change that for me. Without a doubt, he and Danika would make a much better Warden romantic pairing. So I was impatient for Layla and Roth to interact and grinned in pleasure any time they did.  ‘This was so inappropriate. Zayne and I weren’t together, together, but my goodies were going up against a part of Roth’s goodies.’ Layla I was thankful for the recap of the gargoyle and demon mythology and intrigued by all the new mythology revealed. And I always love a good mystery. I thought for sure I knew who the Lilin was. So I was more than a little blindsided by the ending which I failed to see coming. Author Jennifer L. Armentrout never fails to deliver, so I am eagerly anticipating the final Dark Elements novel, Every Last Breath available July 2015. 
Kayla_Love More than 1 year ago
I just read the book and i love it. I can't wait to get the next book. :) :) 
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The dialogue and authors NEVER disappoint when it comes to anything this lady writes! I keep rereading everything this series and cannot wait for the next one. I always wonder beforehand if I will be able to get into one of her series based on the summaries, like really, is gargoyles my thing?! And then I read a preview and not only become all about gargoyles, but find myself coming back for the book again and again. Always love her strong heroines and *sigh and does she ever know how to make you swoon for the love interests! 
BlkosinerBookBlog More than 1 year ago
    I wanted to read Stone Cold Touch because I adore Jennifer as a person and an author. I love her snarky sense of humor, the ability to draw me into her worlds, connect with the main characters, fall in love with her swoony guys, and always want more. I read Bitter Sweet Love and White Hot Kiss, and love her take on gargoyles, as well as really connecting and feeling for the spot that Layla the main character in this one is in where she lives with Wardens, the full gargoyles, yet the mysterious, and hot Roth, who is an upper level demon, but yet he is so attentive and protective of her and even sacrificed himself for her. Then there is Zayne, who she has always been close to and had a crush on, and trying to navigate those waters all while being a hybrid-- half warden and half demon. She can tag demons for the wardens to kill, but she can also take someone's soul, a demon property.      This started right where the last left off, and there was enough review without weighing anything down, but enough to get me right back in there, totally with the story and not confused since its been a bit since I read the first. Layla has a whole new set of problems when her abilities change as well as everyone realizing that a nightmare creature may have been created and they will form an unlikely and shaky truce to put an end to it.      My feelings for both of the boys, and appreciating the hard place that Layla is in, trying to figure out who she is, and where she fits in as well as which boy is the right choice for her. This once again has some hot scenes, and even though we have Roth--I think he's playing an Edward because of the things he said to Layla, but in some ways I can understand. (Don't consider this is a spoiler, happens early). So, thanks to his idiocy we get to have a book where Zayne can throw his hat in the ring for Layla's heart, and by golly, it confuses me even more.     There is so much action in this one and things revealed in this one, it kept my attention and I can't wait for the next one. I love her writing and she holds one of my favorite author spots, and with her hot romance and snarky humor as well as break neck pace and surprising reveals.  Bottom Line: Great second book and can't wait for more. 
Kristas_Dust_Jacket More than 1 year ago
I waited awhile before writing this review. I actually read my ARC of Stone Cold Touch before it came out, and had to take some time to process my thoughts about the book and about the contest that is still going on to determine which guy Layla will pick in the end – Zayne or Roth. I address my personal choice later on in my review, in case you’re curious. I have very mixed feelings about everything surrounding this book and, I guess, the series as a whole. Although bad guys were defeated in White Hot Kiss, it appears that they were just the tip of the iceberg. A Scarier, badder guy is here, but Layla has lost her ability to see auras, which means, she can’t tell who it is. On top of the short-circuiting of her powers, she’s trying to come to terms with her feelings for both Roth, who she thought was gone forever, and Zayne, the boy who she has loved forever and now appears to reciprocate those feelings. And, all the Wardens in her clan now look at her with wariness and outright disdain. It’s a lot for Layla to process, especially when Roth comes back unexpectedly. I LOVE this world. Like, draw-hearts-around-it-in-the-margin-of-my-notebook love. Jen Armentrout has come up with some pretty incredible characters in her books, but I personally think that the Wardens take the cake. Their abilities and purpose for being here are so awesome, but beyond that, they’re not wholly good or bad like you would think. Like humans, the Wardens are shades of both. Some like Zayne, Dez, Jasmine and Nicoli are inherently good. Others, like Petr and Maddox seem inherently bad. And then there are those that straddle the line like Abbot – his actions are horrible sometime, but you know they come from a place that you can maybe understand a little (like, the desire to protect your child). I love the different demons that are in this world too. We get to see even more of them in Stone Cold Touch. Some are sexy, some are scary, and some are downright evil. Again, Jen Armentrout has the reader questioning what is really “bad,” and what is the appropriate way to deal with the bad in the world. One solution (eradication) doesn’t always fit, yet that’s the assumption the Wardens have operated under forever. When Layla begins to question that, she’s put on the outs with the rest of her clan. It’s understandable, and yet frustrating. I guess it’s time to address the elephant in the room. The love triangle. Sadly, I feel like the awesomeness of the world and the characters in it are being completely overshadowed by The Love Triangle. All three characters involved – Layla, Roth and Zayne – don’t seem to have much substance on their own anymore. They have become defined entirely by their role in the triangle, which upsets me so much. All three of them are incredibly dynamic in their own right, but we never had a chance to see them shine by themselves. The main plot point – finding out who the Lilin is – was buried under the ongoing drama of which guy is the one for Layla. There was a lot of: Roth: “Let’s go check out the scary basement for clues.” Layla: I shouldn’t say yes because Zayne would be upset, but I still care about Roth even though I don’t want to, but Zayne is trusting me, but Roth is so hot and I shouldn’t be thinking about Zayne when I’m with Roth… oh right. There’s evil afoot. “Okay.” And Zayne: “What do you mean you can’t see auras now?” Layla: Roth was wondering the same thing earlier. No. Don’t think about Roth right now. Ohmygoodness, Zayne’s eyes are beautiful and I might actually have a real chance with him now, but only if I can kick Roth out of my brain. Roth – DAMMIT there I go again. Crap. Hunky, gorgeous Zayne who I think I still love is waiting for an answer. What was the question again? It honestly made me want to scream more than once. Layla being with either boy is fraught with problems. Roth is the Prince of Hell and Layla has been trained to hate and kill demons like him. That’s a big problem. Zayne has a pure soul, and if Layla isn’t careful, she can suck it out of him and kill him. That, too, is a big problem. I SO wish that Jen had never created one of them so that the story could stand on its own feet, and Layla could have the side challenge of figuring out how to be with the boy she loves. Instead, you have these two impossible relationships on top of this cool mystery, and it just seems now like way too much. So, the main story is now on the periphery and The Love Triangle has taken center stage. I wanted a story about gargoyles fighting evil. I didn’t get much of that here. Layla never fully changes form, which was so disappointing. I wanted to see that so badly after she discovered that ability at the end of White Hot Kiss. Roth and Zayne only change forms once each, and both times, only for a very short time. There’s not a ton of evil-fighting that takes place in Stone Cold Touch. I wish Roth hadn’t come back so early in the story. Perhaps then it would’ve given Zayne and Layla a chance to kick some butt together before The Love Triangle happened. To cast an even bigger spotlight on the relationship drama, the choice of which guy should Layla choose has been left up to the masses. It’s being reduced to a popularity contest – a challenge of which camp cares enough to clear their cache enough times in the span of three weeks to ensure a win for their “team.” I don’t know about you all, but I think Jen Armentrout has done a pretty spectacular job so far writing endings to series that have blown my mind. I’d rather the ending of this one sprang completely from her brain too. I want to know who JEN would pick for Layla (although, after reading Stone Cold Touch, I’m pretty sure I can guess who she voted for). Me? Although swearing I wouldn’t vote, of course I did end up casting my ballot. Hypocritical of me, I know. But, I did vote for Zayne. Let’s face it – Roth will win. No doubt. He’s the quintessential bad boy with a heart, and people really go for that. I voted for Zayne because he’s got staying power. He’s been there for Layla since she was little, always protecting her and loving her from afar. They’ve discovered a way for them to be together – like TOGETHER together – and he’s willing to forsake his clan, his family – his very life – for her. That gets my blood racing. Jen Armentrout is an incredible writer, and that’s evident in Stone Cold Touch. I had many feels while reading it – happy, sad, mad, frustrated… they ran the gamut. I will still read anything this woman writes. And, this world is amazing. Maybe we can get a spin-off for the losing guy?