The Book of Ivy by Amy Engel #BookReview #Giveaway

The Book of Ivy (The Book of Ivy #1)
by Amy Engel
Release Date: 11/04/14
Entangled Teen

After a brutal nuclear war, the United States was left decimated. A small group of survivors eventually banded together, but only after more conflict over which family would govern the new nation. The Westfalls lost. Fifty years later, peace and control are maintained by marrying the daughters of the losing side to the sons of the winning group in a yearly ritual.

This year, it is my turn.

My name is Ivy Westfall, and my mission is simple: to kill the president’s son—my soon-to-be husband—and return the Westfall family to power.

But Bishop Lattimer is either a very skilled actor or he’s not the cruel, heartless boy my family warned me to expect. He might even be the one person in this world who truly understands me. But there is no escape from my fate. I am the only one who can restore the Westfall legacy.

Because Bishop must die. And I must be the one to kill him…


I love a book that has such a great hook in the beginning to reel me in. I was sucked in the minute I started reading The Book of Ivy and I loved the way the world is explained too. It made sense but it wasn’t info dumping either. Amy Engel works in a good balance of the events happening and the information being given.

Ivy is a girl who has always been told what to do. She is forced into an arranged marriage but does it without a fight in order to complete her fathers agenda. The thing with Ivy is that she has never know real love. Her father and sister Callie have a thirst for power and Ivy really only fits into the picture as a tool. My heart kind of felt heartbroken for Ivy in the whole book. It felt like no matter what the outcome was going to be it would not be good for her. Turn her back on her family or turn her back on Bishop. I think Ivy has a clarity to see through the situation. She isn’t racked with vengeance and grief like her sister and father. She is not as cold hearted as them. In world that where you have been told what to do, what to think and that your destiny is predetermined. How do you break free. Ivy is not weak, she is actually quite strong. She has fearlessness to her and sassy attitude. I think there are two ways that people learn. Sometimes you spit out what you think with no regard and people then challenge you. Or you quietly take in what everyone around is saying and digest the information. Ivy is more of the first way. She can be impulsive but also very aware. I loved her and I just wanted her to find a happy place for herself.

Bishop and Ivy’s story is sweet and cute. They move into it slowly and things develop over time as they get to know one another. They grow together but from the beginning you know that the story might not end happy. Something is going to have to give. The wonderful thing about Bishop though is that he sees through Ivy to the real Ivy.

The political parts of the book are interesting because it’s giving you two different sides. Ivy and Bishop almost become a backwards Romeo and Juliet. Rather than their feuding families keeping them apart, they push them together. Each with their own political agenda at the root of it. Yet love is still “forbidden” in a way. As Ivy explores the world she lives in she finds that things are not always as they seem and things are not black and white. There can be something good pulled from both views but separate they are their own juggernauts of destruction. Both are doing things for the greater good, but I don’t know if anyone actually knows what the greater good wants. Meredith is kind of a good example of that. It’s really interesting.

Just want to say that if I could have crawled into the book and punched Callie out I would have. She was mean and kind of creepy too.

I just really thought the book was well written and intriguing. The pacing is perfect, I would be sucked in and looked down and realized I had been cruising through the story. I can’t wait for the second book, I need to know what happens. I need it now! It’s going to kill me to wait, it’s one of those kinds of books.

Amy Engel was born in Kansas and after a childhood spent bouncing between countries (Iran, Taiwan) and states (Kansas, California, Missouri, Washington, D.C.), she settled in Kansas City, Missouri where she lives with her husband and two kids. Before devoting herself full time to motherhood and writing, she was a criminal defense attorney, which is not quite as exciting as it looks on TV. When she has a free moment, she can usually be found reading, running, or shoe shopping.


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