Sunday, January 25, 2009

Shadow Kiss By Richelle Mead (Vampire Academy Series #3)

Shadow Kiss By Richelle Mead

Published: November 2008

Pages: 448

Age Group: Young Adult

Publisher: Razor Bill

Is Rose's fate to kill the person she loves most? It's springtime at St. Vladimir's Academy, and Rose Hathaway is this close to graduation. Since Mason's death, Rose hasn't been feeling quite right. She has dark flashbacks in the middle of practice, can't concentrate in class, and has terrifying dreams about Lissa. But Rose has an even bigger secret . . . .She's in love with Dimitri. And this time, it's way more than a crush.

Then Strigoi target the academy in the deadliest attack in Moroi history, and Dimitri is taken. Rose must protect Lissa at all costs, but keeping her best friend safe could mean losing Dimitri forever . . .

I'm starting to feel like a 12 year-old girl getting all giddy about a new crush. I am completely in love with this series.

The book starts out in a steamy love scene which quickly turns all wrong when Rose realizes she is in Lissa's head while she is making out with Christian- yuck! Poor Rose, she already has enough boy problems with Dimitri being off limits and her still mourning over Mason's death. For once I can honestly say I was temporarily NOT jealous of Rose Hathaway.

A spider web of problems continues to tangle up, but all the while I never felt confused. Adrian is still fighting a losing battle for Rose, the girls are trying -and succeed- in getting to Victor Dashkov's trial. While they are there the girls see Mia, who disappeared after Mason's death and learn she is living and going to school at the Royal Court. Now, Mia used to be a backstabbing jerk, but after running away last year and learning some perspective, Mia has definitely changed for the better. I love reading about how happy she finally seems to be after having so much internal anger for so long, and seeing how much she has matures.

Mead does an amazing job of showing growth, maturation and change within all of the characters. I kept catching myself changing my opinions constantly about characters. Christian has shaped into a dedicated Moroi who is willing to put it all in the line to save the Moroi race (even though everyone thinks he will turn Strogoi like his parents.) Lissa finally finds true happiness and learns how to accept and use her role as the last Dragomir. Rose is as sassy as ever but with a mature edge to it. Instead of arguing for the sake of arguing and rebelling because she can, Rose uses her aggressive energy to kill Strogoi (SCARY!), have a deeper connection than ever with Dimitri, and even start to make things right between her and her astranger mother.

I have never been a very big fan of action and war movies, or even books for that matter, but the battles against the Strogoi leave me at the edge of my seat and craving more. I think the addiction stems from the drama created from the battles. Rose is constantly worrying about Lissa and Dimitri which makes me want to keep reading to make sure they are safe!

In an attempt to keep this review from spoiling too much, all I'm going to say is this: I HATED THE ENDING! I mean, it was written amazingly, and I figured something like this would happen but I really wish the book didn't leave off where it did. I actually had to force back tears.

In the end, Shadow Kiss left my head spinning and feeling every emotion I can think of all at the same time. The book, like the other two, never slows for a second which makes it nearly impossible to find a good place to stop. In fact, I don't think I ever did stop :P

Just like the rest, this book amazing which gives it a well deserved 5/5.

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