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Ascension of the Phoenix

(The Phoenix Trilogy #1)

4.19  ·  Rating details ·  32 ratings  ·  27 reviews
To rise from ashes, one must be a phoenix.
Detective Leila Wells has apprehended every criminal to cross her path, except for one. And when Bryan Foster returns, he devastates her world. To cope, she finds release in street fighting. Successes with her fighting partner grant them an invitation to participate in the Rulers of the Realms Fighting Tag Tournament. But as she fi
Paperback, 300 pages
Published August 25th 2020
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Average rating 4.19  · 
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Lou Kemp
Jan 13, 2022 rated it really liked it

Blam bam! Total action.

But to balance so much of it, the psychology of a hero(ine) is tested when the love of her life is murdered in front of her. How would any of us react? Where would our anger go? Would it manifest itself like hers did?
Great depiction of the police locker rooms, squad rooms, dialog. Getting the sparse fact based cop-talk right is a skill, and this author has mastered it.
One of the most (fore-) telling lines was when the protagonist was forced to meet with a counselor, who ha
E.P. Stavs
Feb 21, 2021 rated it really liked it
The "Ascension of the Phoenix" follows heroine Leila as she copes with the loss of her partner/lover, as well as the "dark side" that edges its way into her fighting as a result. While it was mostly a modern day action story with a plethora of fight scenes both before and during the main tournament, there also seemed to be a bit of a paranormal aspect, as well. There was a bit of romance, too, but none of the love interests really gave me the feels. I suspect that's intentional, and perhaps the ...more
Jessica Piro
Aug 25, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  (Review from the author)
Again, I'm the author, so of course I'm going to love my own work. Hopefully, you'll read it and enjoy it too! ...more
Kristen Wilson
Jun 23, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: series
This book was action-packed, bittersweet, and inspiring. It was easy to get lost in the story and almost miss my bus stop. There was a perfect balance of lighter subject matter, such as family and romance, and darker elements of loss, revenge, and striving to be the last one standing. Leila was a relatable protagonist and the Jamaican Jamaal and his family were endearing. Looking forward to seeing where the rest of the series goes.
Dee Jalane
Jun 12, 2021 rated it did not like it
Wow. This was published in 2020 and reads as if it were 1960. "Slanted eyes". Seriously? Skip this book and find another author that has a clue about anyone that's not white. ...more
Lori Piro
Sep 05, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Great read! Can't wait to continue the story in the next book! ...more
Anya Pavelle
May 01, 2022 rated it it was amazing
I really enjoyed the punchy dialogue in this book. The author also described scenes in a way that reminded me of a noir film. The story primarily centers around Leila, who excels at Kung Fu. I enjoyed the descriptions of her spars. That said, Ascension of the Phoenix isn’t simply about martial arts or street fighting. Leila is a cop, and she suffers extreme personal loss early in the book. Be aware you may cry when reading that section. To cope with her profound loss, Leila vows to uphold a prom ...more
Joshua Grant
Jan 18, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Jessica Piro gives us a no excuses beat-em-up thriller with Ascension of the Phoenix! When Detective Leila Well’s life is devastated by a criminal she failed to catch, she tries to cope by joining a fighting tournament. But when hidden powers start to awaken in her, her thoughts turn to that of revenge. Wells is a great character and Piro does a great job of showing her struggle and journey! The action is particularly well-crafted in this one, and the battle between revenge and justice is always ...more
P.S. Winn
Aug 23, 2021 rated it really liked it
Bryan Foster is such a pain, it seems a group of police can't get rid of the guy. Leila tries to find ways to take out her frustrations about the guy but knows that won't happen until the criminal is caught. This is a good story that takes a bit to really get into. This is book one in what looks like an adventure to jump into. Nice writing style readers will enjoy. ...more
Martin McGregor
Sep 01, 2022 rated it really liked it
I was expecting a crime novel, but was surprised in a pleasant way. Part Street Fighter, part Mortal Kombat with a smidge of Seven thrown in for good measure. Action packed from start to finish, and a thoroughly enjoyable read!
Judy Ferrell
Jan 22, 2022 rated it it was amazing
Jessica Piro went all out and gave us an action packed novel. Best of all the main character is a female with enough confidence to fight her way back from devastation to be as whole as possible. A truly amazing experience!
Niranjana Siva
Sep 20, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Firstly, I would like to thank the author for giving me a copy of this book for an honest review. It was a great read.

Ascension of the Phoenix is an amazing story about a detective, Leila Wells who had to face a traumatizing incident. All the feelings beautifully resonated from the book and I was able to feel the pain that she felt. The story progresses with how she tackles her inner battles.

This was exceptionally written. Though I am not a fan of action novels, I enjoyed all the fighting scen
Jennie Griffin, Book Reviewer & Promoter
If you enjoy action-themed books with a touch of mystery and romance, then Ascension of the Phoenix is an excellent choice.

One of Piro’s strengths is her ability to describe characters’ emotions and reactions. Reading that a person’s words hit like a “cavernous void sucking away her breath” leaves a clear impression with the reader. This becomes a critical skill later in the book when Piro dives deep into the dark forces at play within Leila. This dark side is what fuels her desire for revenge
Leslie Ann
The backdrop of this story centers around martial arts and most of the action involves detailed descriptions of martial arts matches, a topic for which I have little interest. Full disclosure, I won this book in a contest and I'm most definitely not among the target audience.

Having said that, I did find Ms. Piro's skill and writing style to be good. The story was fast-paced, and the fight scene details seemed to be authentic, although I don't know for sure, having zero knowledge of martial arts
John St. Clair
May 04, 2022 rated it really liked it
Jessica Piro's "Ascension of the Phoenix" is jam-packed with non-stop action, and I could hardly take a breath. The protagonist Leila Wells, a detective with the NYPD, is hot on the trail of her nemesis, and without trying to spoil anything in this review, she endures the most painful loss of her life—and almost loses her own. In trying to pick up the pieces of her shattered existence, circumstances deliver her into a month's long martial arts tournament where she and a new street-fighting partn ...more
Isaiah Le Istya
Aug 07, 2022 rated it it was amazing
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Andrew Colvin
Mar 14, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Highly Recommended
I loved Jessica Piro’s novel, “Ascension of the Phoenix.” The story is action-packed with great characters that jump out of the page. Leila is a super-detective and an expert martial artist who loses her partner and boyfriend in a confrontation with a serial killer. The tragedy decimates Leila, but she fights (figuratively and literally) her way back, learning to control her rage. Throughout the novel, I liked the spiritual/ paranormal theme from Captain Sullivan’s intuition to
Manik and Sayee |favbookshelf
Jan 24, 2022 rated it really liked it
I really liked Jessica Piro’s writing style. It was very impressive and the story was fast-paced and fun. My favorite aspect of the book has to be the strong female protagonist. Leila Wells is such a strong female character, not just physically but mentally. She always puts others before herself but does not lose her individuality along the way. Although the plot was predictable at times and more background on supporting characters would have helped.
Overall, it was an awesome action-packed read
Alex Shute
Jun 06, 2021 rated it it was amazing
I listened to the audiobook. The story that Jessica writes is, from a writers perspective, very well worked on. From a readers perspective the story brought me in and once it got going I didn’t want to stop listening. A thrilling narrative and powerful. The narrator of the audiobook was great. Sometimes I couldn’t even tell it was still her speaking from all the different voices she used. An enjoyable listen.
Cole Poindexter
Jan 03, 2022 rated it really liked it
This was something really different from what I usually read, but I so enjoyed it. Give me a strong female lead any day, and I'm happy! I absolutely loved how we were in Leila's head every step of the way. I loved the relationship between her and David. And I was surprised by the ending...and I always predict endings! A unique entry in its category and certainly a win for indie authors. ...more
Heart DeCoupeville
Jan 04, 2022 rated it it was ok
Writing style was a bit rough, but not terrible. Opening action hard to follow, and promised story line did not really appeal to me. YWS, YLS.
Kerri Davidson
Feb 03, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Terrific read. Highly imaginative yet realistic. I have no complaints and can't wait for the second book! ...more
Jan 15, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Lots of action, a little romance, and an awesome character cast. Fantastic read all the way around.
Jan 20, 2021 rated it it was amazing
I just re-read book one before starting book two (today) to refresh my memory. Let me preface my remarks with: I have met the author. This does not stop me from ripping a book apart if needed.

What if the love of your life were to be killed in front of you for some reason? It might unleash something dark that you wished to remain hidden from sight or thought.
The Phoenix offers us a FEMALE detective that has this happen to her. It does unleash something dark. Now, I noticed the author was wheelcha
Kelly Miller
May 24, 2022 rated it it was amazing
Ascension of the Phoenix, by Jessica Piro, centers around Leila, a smart, tough, fearless, and effective twenty-something police detective. Her partner, David, is a perfect match for her both on and off the job, and together, they are the top performers in their police unit. Leila though, is the more aggressive of the pair, and her obsession with arresting an elusive serial killer drives her to make a fateful decision that she learns to regret. Early on in the book, the focus of the story alters ...more
Anders Kingsley
Dec 14, 2021 rated it really liked it
Very entertaining!

I loved the writing style, it was easy to follow and very professional.
The book started like a modern day crime novel with a traumatic event that has a strong impact on the rest of the book and perhaps the entire series. From then on, it develops more and more into a supernatural action thriller.
While it is action packed, the story also includes scenes (e.g. Jacuzzi) and characters (e.g. Luke) that made me smile throughout.
While it’s the first book in a series, it has its ow
Picky Bookworm
Nov 19, 2022 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Ascension of the Phoenix is one of the best debut novels I've read in a long time. Jessica introduced such a fantastic character in Leila. She's firey, and loyal when she needs to be. I love the fact that she has faults, but she never lets them take over, and when her dark side, the Phoenix, comes forward, I root for Leila to win and to find a balance. If you enjoy urban fantasy, you'll love the Phoenix Trilogy! ...more
S.P. O'Farrell
rated it really liked it
Oct 23, 2021
rated it it was ok
Jun 14, 2021
rated it it was amazing
Sep 14, 2021
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Jessica is an author in a wheelchair and has Type 1 Diabetes. Her multi-genre works cater to YA, NA, and Adults, and can be found on Wattpad and Amazon.
She lives in Northeast Louisiana and lives with her mom, dad, two brothers, and a three-legged cat named Daisy.

Other books in the series

The Phoenix Trilogy (6 books)
  • The Panther's Pride (The Phoenix Trilogy, #1.5)
  • The Dragon of Russia (The Phoenix Trilogy, #2)
  • The Crane's Dance (The Phoenix Trilogy, #2.5)
  • Dueling with Snakes (The Phoenix Trilogy, #3)
  • The Tiger's Patience (The Phoenix Trilogy, #3.5)

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