Reading Level: Young Adult
Hardcover: 421 Pages
Publisher: Razorbill, August 23, 2011
The Vampire Academy series is over and Rose is happily with the love of her life Dimitri. However, Rose left one broken heart and now we are to find out his story, albeit it is being told by Sydney Sage, the alchemist who helped Rose in the last couple of books.
After helping the Dhampir, Sydney was sent home as punishment for her involvement with the vampires. But our story opens with Sydney being woken up by her father to meet with the alchemist that have come to ask his favor. But they don't want Sydney, they want her sister and that is just not acceptable to Sydney. She's not ready, too young, etc... Sydney, being the good protag that she is says that she will take on the job.
And what a job it is...
Sydney Sage finds herself guarding Jillian Mastrano, Lissa's half sister. Who has left St. Vladimir's and has been enrolled into a normal California high school. There are people out there who would like her dead to remove Lissa as Queen. Oh, and with Jill (aka jailbait), comes Adrian Ivashkov. His connection to Jill is a surprise, so I will not spoil.
I didn't love this installment. Mead is setting up for future books so you get a lot of back
story and not a lot of story or anything interesting. I found myself bored with Sydney; she's definitely not as dynamic as Rose. I find her quite pithy. Adrian seemed a bit weaker in this book. We know that he's a drinker and a ladies man and can sweet talk just about anyone, but to me, he's been dumbed down a bit. I think we'll really get the guts of the story with the next book which we'll have to wait until next year. But first we have to get through Mead's pregnancy and birth of her first child.
Jill seemed much stronger in the VA series and was also a shell of herself. I really hope these characters develop some backbones and spines. The cast of characters are pretty stock and nothing to really mention. If you're a fan of the series, it's definitely required reading, but only because you'll want the second book ASAP.
*rcvd copy from BEA 2011