Star Rating: 5 stars out of 5
Short Reaction: My heart is in shambles for my favourite series is over…WHAT DO I DO WITH MY LIFE NOW?
Published on/by: December 7th, 2010, Razorbill
Blurb provided by Goodreads: They come first.
My vision was growing dimmer, the blackness and ghosts closing in. I swore it was like I could hear Robert whispering in my ear: The world of the dead won’t give you up a second time. Just before the light completely vanished, I saw Dimitri’s face join Lissa’s. I wanted to smile. I decided then that if the two people I loved most were safe, I could leave this world.
The dead could finally have me.
Rose Hathaway has always played by her own rules. She broke the law when she ran away from St. Vladimir’s Academy with her best friend and last surviving Dragomir princess, Lissa. She broke the law when she fell in love with her gorgeous, off-limits instructor, Dimitri. And she dared to defy Queen Tatiana, leader of the Moroi world, risking her life and reputation to protect generations of dhampir guardians to come.
Now the law has finally caught up with Rose – for a crime she didn’t even commit. She’s in prison for the highest offense imaginable: the assassination of a monarch. She’ll need help from both Dimitri and Adrian to find the one living person who can stall her execution and force the Moroi elite to acknowledge a shocking new candidate for the royal throne: Vasilisa Dragomir.
But the clock on Rose’s life is running out. Rose knows in her heart the world of the dead wants her back…and this time she is truly out of second chances. The big question is, when your whole life is about saving others, who will save you?
This is the end…I can’t believe I reached the end of this series. Oh. My. God. I’m not going to lie, I cried. My book is filled with sticky-notes and tears and love and oh god. I can’t wrap my head around the idea that I will no longer be reading from Rose’s point of view. This book was a roller coaster…it was epic/heartbreaking/humorous and ugh, ALL THE ADJECTIVES.
This was not a perfect book. Neither books in the series were, honestly, but they were close to the perfect action/romance induced book out there. I was very wary on starting this book. It was the beginning to the end of my (now) favourite series ever. How can I ever love again???????
I know I’m being dramatic, BUT IT’S THE TRUTH. It’s been 18 hours since I finished the book and I’m just.. I can’t stop thinking about the ending. It was as carefully constructed as could be, with just enough loose ends to make me rip my hair off my head. I know they’ll be addressed in the Bloodlines series, but I’m going to have serious Rose withdrawals. Sigh. The character development as wll as the plot developments were INSANE and FANTASTIC and Richelle Mead…I think I love you.
Before I go all spoilery and even more dramatic (if that is even possible), I beg of you to READ THIS SERIES. You will not regret it.
Confident, kick-ass main character with great humour? CHECK.
Great friendships and relationships? CHECK.
Action sequences galore that won’t put you to sleep? CHECK.
Amazing love interests/a love triangle that won’t annoy you that much? CHECK.
A very intriguing world and vampire system? CHECK.
It won’t disappoint, I promise.
Let’s get down to business.
Adrian and Rose
That ending with Adrian made me so so so sad. Like I said, this book was not perfect. Case in point: the infidelity. I hate cheaters, and when Rose cheated on Adrian, it made me super pissed…but I liked how it was handled honestly. In no way was it condoned, and what Adrian said to her in the end was kind of true. But again, I’m so conflicted because it was super duper clear even from Book 1 that Rose belonged with Dimitri. There is no denying that. I also felt that this decision brought a new layer on Romitri because they now have to confront something that they are supposed to strive for: honour. They did a bad thing, I know…but it was inevitable. For a spirit user, I’d thought Adrian could see that their aura was in sync. Guess he was in denial, the same as I was.
I kinda knew the premise of the Bloodline series before starting this series, so again I was wary on Rodrian, but that doesn’t mean I loved them together! I truly did, and I’m just hoping in an alternate universe they can be together bla bla bla. I really hated how we left off, with Adrian despising Rose…but I guess we’ll get more of this angst in the Bloodline series.
I truly, truly hope that Sydney and him can find that same degree of love. I want him to be happy, but I’m also kinda sad that it won’t be with Rose. LOL.
Queen Vasilisa & her new family member
I loved, loved, loved this development. That’s what’s so amazing with this series. The character development is so incredible. In book 1, I would have never thought Lissa would be Queen and such a poised one at that. It was fantastic. While she went through the trials, I was so excited because I could see how much she came from Book 1. To be perfectly honest, I didn’t really like Lissa and less so in Shadow Kiss. She was the perfect choice for Queen and she really was the epitome of grace and diplomacy.
Jill as the illegitimate Dragomir? Oh snap. I can’t say I didn’t see this coming. The hints were all there in Spirit Bound. Especially when we learnt her mother was a dancer…Eric liked to flirt…Eric liked to go to that Las Vegas club… If you think about it…all this information, especially the introduction of someone like Jill who is so far off their age (why does she keep hanging around them?!)…it was like putting two and two together. She had a larger role coming, and boy did it come. I liked Jill, and I felt for her. It was definitely overwhelming for her and all these expectations and the weight of the family name on her shoulders. I felt so, so bad for her.
Lissa’s and Jill’s relationship is strenuous at best. I felt bad for both of them. Lissa proved to be just as poised by not freaking the hell out. I mean, first she learns that her beloved late brother, Andre, used girls at his disposal and now she learns the father she put on a pedestal cheated on her mother and fathered a secret child? It is totally understandable that she was not entirely warm towards Jill. It’s sad for Jill, who is thrown into this huge political mess…but I kinda understand where Lissa is coming from.
Lissa & Rose’s Bond
Oh my gosh. This was one of the biggest surprises in the book. Amidst all the controversy and the death..this was such a shock to me. I understood what Rose meant when she said she’s finally her own person now bla bla bla, but I can’t help to feel that when she was bonded with Lissa…it was just fantastic to see this unorthodox bond between friends. It somehow made Rose have a super power or something, if you know what I mean. It’s still a little shady and confusing on how their bond was severed, but it was such a huge blow. I guess it’s appropriate this happened at the end of the series, because then the books would be 30% less interesting.
Dimitri and Rose
Hahaha, I guess you can tell which guy I liked better, but it’s not to say that I preferred Rose with Adrian! I loved Dimitri for Rose, but I think I’m more attracted and more interested in the unhinged type. Freaking finally, Dimitri realises that he was still in love with Rose. I don’t have much to say about this because all is well in the Romitri area except can we LOL together over Abe & Janine’s conversation with Dimitri?
ʺAh, Belikov,ʺ said Abe, shaking Dimitriʹs hand. ʺIʹd been hoping weʹd run into each other. Iʹd really like to get to know you better. Maybe we can set aside some time to talk, learn more about life, love, et cetera. Do you like to hunt? You seem like a hunting man. Thatʹs what we should do sometime. I know a great spot in the woods. Far, far away. We could make a day of it. Iʹve certainly got a lot of questions Iʹd like to ask you. A lot of things Iʹd like to tell you too.ʺ
I shot a panicked look at my mother, silently begging her to stop this. Abe had spent a good deal of time talking to Adrian when we dated, explaining in vivid and gruesome detail exactly how Abe expected his daughter to be treated. I did not want Abe taking Dimitri off alone into the wilderness, especially if firearms were involved.
ʺActually,ʺ said my mom casually. ʺIʹd like to come along. I also have a number of questions—especially about when you two were back at St. Vladimirʹs.ʺ
ʺDonʹt you guys have somewhere to be?ʺ I asked hastily. ʺWeʹre about to start.ʺ
All in all, I loved this series, I loved the characters (I am emotionally tied to them, as you can probably tell), I loved the humour, the action and the fantastic plot… and you can bet that I’ll be re-reading all the books as well as starting the Bloodlines series where I can get more Adrian Ivashkov. 😉 This world is fantastic and so unique with the different kinds of vampires lurking at every corner. Richelle Mead did not disappoint with this fast-paced, epic finale.