Bitter Sweet Love is a prequel novella for the Dark Elements series by Jennifer L. Armentrout (the third book, Every Last breath, comes out this summer so keep your eyes peeled!). I give it an 8.5. It was great, and you can read it even before you read the rest of the series, it can stand by itself too. I really enjoyed it, and I recommend it to fans of YA paranormal romance, like Hush Hush by Becca Fitzpatrick.
Summary (Goodreads): Dez wasn’t just Jasmine’s crush. A gargoyle Warden like Jas, he helped her come to terms with her destiny—fending off demons and maintaining the balance between good and evil. He was her everything…right until the moment he disappeared without a trace. It didn’t help that Jas’s father had just announced that she and Dez would one day be mated. Hard not to take that personally.
And now he’s back, three years older, ten times hotter, ready to pick up exactly where they left off. But Jas isn’t taking that risk again. Dez has seven days to meet all her conditions and earn back her trust. Seven days filled with terrifying danger and sweet temptation. Seven days to win her heart—or shatter it all over again…
Non spoiler review: Like I said, I really enjoyed this book. It wasn’t my favorite, but I still really liked it. It has that Jennifer L. Armentrout humor that keeps you laughing through the whole thing, and all those sexy guys. Plus, we get to see some characters from the series! Some side characters star and some leads become side characters. I didn’t like that in the beginning Jasmine felt a little like Layla’s narrative, because Layla and Jasmine are very different. But eventually I felt the difference between the two girls, and it got much better. Any paranormal romance fans should give this series (and this novella) a try. If you’re hesitant about the series, read this first because it will give you a good look on what the world and the charterers will look like.
Spoiler review: Warning – This will spoil White Hot Kiss and Stone Cold Touch too, so whoever hasn’t read this series should read it and come back when you’re done.
I liked Jasmine a lot more than I liked Layla.
Layla was a little annoying, playing with two guys and sitting like a little weakling on the sidelines. Jasmine started out much weaker than Layla was though, but she was always smarter. By the end, Jasmine was both smarter and stronger. She’ll never be Layla though; Jasmine accepts her world more than Layla does, which actually gives points to Layla.
I liked Layla in this novella a lot more than I liked her in her own books, actually, but that might have something to do with young Layla vs. older Layla and pre love triangle Layla (btw, I’m team Roth).
Dez: I love Dez. I think he may be my favorite male in the entire series. I’m not in love with him, but I might have been if I’d read a full book about him. He was funny and sexy – basically the typical Jennifer L. Armentrout male personality, but without Roth and Zayne’s asshole attitude. I’m glad Jasmine chose him.
Another thing I really liked about this is that sometimes when the girls don’t choose the guys right away I feel like they’re just playing with them, but Jasmine wasn’t like that at all. I sympathized with her reasoning; she loves him, but he left and now she doesn’t know if she’s ready to commit her entire life to him. It makes perfect sense. What doesn’t make sense is Dez choosing to leave the exact night it was announced that he was probably going to mate with Jasmine. I mean, I get his logic, I just don’t think his reasoning was sufficient. He should have walked right up to Jasmine and tell her he couldn’t be a good mate for her unless he let go of his anger and then disappeared the next morning. On the other hand, then we’d have no book, which would be a real shame because it was hilarious and fun.