BOOK REVIEW: Shadow Kiss (Vampire Academy series, Book #3), by Richelle Mead

RELEASE DATE: November 13, 2008
SERIES: Vampire Academy, #3
AUTHOR LINK: WEB / TWITTER / GOODREADS / FACEBOOK
PUBLISHER: Razorbill (an imprint of Penguin)
FORMAT: Paperback
SOURCE: Purchased
BUY NOW FROM: Amazon

Rose Hathaway knows it is forbidden to love another guardian. Her best friend, Lissa—the last Dragomir princess—must always come first. Unfortunately, when it comes to gorgeous Dimitri Belikov, some rules are meant to be broken… 

But since making her first Strigoi kills, Rose hasn’t been feeling right. Something dark has begun to grow in her mind, and ghostly shadows warn of a terrible evil drawing nearer to the Academy’s iron gates. And now that Lissa and Rose’s sworn enemy, Victor Dashkov, is on trial for his freedom, tensions in the Moroi world are higher than ever. 

Lying to Lissa about Dimitri is one thing but suddenly there’s way more than friendship at stake. The immortal undead are on the prowl, and they want vengeance for the lives that Rose has stolen. In a heart-stopping battle to rival her worst nightmare, Rose will have to choose between life, love, and the two people who matter most… but will her choice mean that only one can survive?

MY REVIEW (MAY CONTAIN SPOILERS) 

I am absolutely loving this series. It’s just so different from other vampire books written for young adults – a little more mature, a little more involved, a lot more intrigue. All that good stuff.

In Shadow Kiss, the 3rd installment of the Vampire Academy series by Richelle Mead, Rose is growing up. It’s been nice to see her change throughout these 3 books, going from someone who seemed destined to become a blood wh*re to someone who is dedicated in her calling as a guardian, being able to (almost) control her emotions and put the Moroi first (They come first).

Of course, I find that as the series goes on, I’m stuck in the middle of a pendulum with Dimitri on one side and Adrian on the other – as much as I love Dimitri and love the connection that him and Rose have, part of me really wants to see what would happen if Rose hooked up with Adrian. I know it’s just a book and all, but Adrian has a certain charm that Dimitri is lacking.

But then, I wrote that above paragraph BEFORE finishing the book and I have to say that while I started to expect what would happen, I didn’t think that Rose would turn Adrian down like that. Yes, I get that she has to kill Dimitri now, but still … what will the other books be like when it’s ONLY Rose and not Lissa, or Adrian, or Christian, or even Alberta or Janine. I guess I’ll have to read to find out, right?

Speaking of Janine, I really like how the relationship between her and her daughter, Rose, is evolving. At first it seemed forced – Rose resented her, hated her even – but now they’re both discovering that the other one is human and are almost to the point where they could have a decent mother-daughter relationship. Or, as much of a relationship that can be in this world.

The whole Mason thing was a nice touch – I really liked how Rose could say goodbye to him in the end. However, I felt like his part of the story made it all just a little too easy for the rest of the characters. I understand how Rose is shadow kissed and she has that connection with the dead, but Mason seemed to know everything. And it seemed too coincidental that a Moroi teacher just happened to have done extensive research on the caves behind the academy, making it easier for the guardians and others to find the Strigoi.

In the end, though, I love these books. I’m about to dive into the 4th book, Blood Promise, and I’m hoping that something good happens. If Richelle Mead’s other books in this series are any indication, I’m sure something will.

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My home is where my books are. - Ellen Thompson

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