Saturday, May 19, 2012

Review {36} Spirit Bound by Richelle Mead

Spirit Bound; Vampire Academy #5
By: Richelle Mead
Published: May 18th 2010 by Penguin/Razorbill
Edition: Hardcover, 489 pages
Obtained: Library
Challenge(s): None
Categories: Vampires, Urban Fantasy, Paranormal Romance, Young Adult, Magic/Spells/Incantations/Curses, Vampire Academy Series, Action, Kick-Ass Heroine
Rating: 4 Cupcakes - Simply Delectable!


Salvation has it's price.
The words stunned Adrian for a moment, but he kept going. "You're lying. What you're describing is impossible. There's no way to save a Strigoi. When they're gone, they're gone. They're dead. Undead. Forever."

Robert's next words weren't directed at Adrian. They were spoken to me. "That which is dead doesn't always stay dead..."

After a long and heartbreaking journey to Dimitri's birthplace in Siberia, Rose Hathaway has finally returned to St. Vladimir's - and to her best friend, Lissa Dragomir. It's graduation, and the girls can't wait for their real lives outside of the Academy's cold iron gates to finally begin. But even with the intrigue and excitement of court life looming, Rose's heart still aches for Dimitri. He's out there, somewhere.

She failed to kill him when she had the chance, and now her worst fears are about to come true. Dimitri has tasted her blood, and she knows in her heart that he is hunting her. And if Rose won't join him, he won't rest until he's silenced her... forever.

But Rose can't forget what she's learned on her journey - whispers of a magic too impossible and terrifying to comprehend. A magic inextricably tied to Lissa that could hold the answer to all of Rose's prayers, but not without devastating consequences. Now Rose will have to decide what - and who - matters most to her. In the end, is true love really worth the price?

Fall in love with Rose and Dimitri all over again in Spirit Bound, the eagerly awaited fifth novel in Richelle Mead's enthralling Vampire Academy Series.
*As always - please proceed with caution if you have not yet read this book or the preceding books of the Vampire Academy Series*
Initial Reaction (Upon finishing the book): Hot diggity dog, Richelle Mead! You've done it again with your insane-crazy-roller coaster of nonstop emotions!

Characters: So we've been around the Academy Crew for a year now (in the book's world...) so I wanted to review the character development and how they've grown and changed since book #1. I think for the most part each character has maintained their initial personalities and beliefs with growth and maturity for each in different areas. The biggest changes, not surprisingly, have been within Rose herself. While she still embodies the traits we first admired her for - strong-willed, determined, loyal, stubborn, blunt, and devoted - she has grown emotionally over the course of the series. She's experienced true love, lost her virginity to said true love, lost true love to the Strigoi, gained love in the form of Adrian Ivashkov, set out on a mission to kill first true love, dropped out of school, re-enrolled in school, graduated and passed her trials, became an official Guardian, learned who her father is, broke a criminal out of jail (and lost said criminal in Las Vegas), am I forgetting anything else?!?! 

Plot: I rarely do my own plot summaries but for this one I wanted to because so much happens in this book that I feel it is necessary to bring us into book #6. In the fifth installment we find Rose and Lissa (and Christian and Eddie...) graduating from St. Vladimir's and moving on to life at Court. Rose is still hung up on finding out that Victor Dashkov's half-brother, Robert, has successfully brought back a Strigoi by staking them with a spirit-charmed stake. Determined to find out if this is true so that there is hope of Dimitri being reestablished as a Dhampir, Rose brings Lissa and Eddie along on a trip to Alaska, to break Victor out of Tarasov prison. With the hopes of freedom, Victor goes along with the trio to Las Vegas where they meet up with Robert - and then get attacked by Strigoi Dimitri. In all of the chaos, Victor and Robert are lost, and Adrian shows up since he thinks Rose and Lissa are just enjoying a "girls trip" before they begin their lives in the real world. Defeated, Rose and her entourage return back to Court hoping nobody will figure out that she, Lissa, and Eddie are the ones who released Victor.

Back at Court, Queen Tatiana is hellbent on keeping Lissa and Rose apart by sentencing Rose to punishments such as filing, and building courtyards. Eddie is not speaking to Rose, which is tearing Rose apart as she always valued Eddie's friendship. Lissa goes on a trip to Lehigh University to ensure that is where she wants to attend school. Since Rose has been forbidden to join her, Lissa takes Christian with her along with Guardians Serena and Grant, and Priscilla Voda. Lissa and Christian practice staking, so that when Lissa is finally able to charm a stake with spirit, she can go after Dimitri and turn him back from the undead. After dinner one night, the group is attacked outside of the restaurant by a group of Strigoi and are held captive in a warehouse by Strigoi Dimitri. He "Talks" to Rose through Lissa, since he knows about the bond, and is pretty sure she is in Lissa's head at that moment (Which, conveniently, she is.) A group is established back at Court to go after the Strigoi, and Rose goes too. In the warehouse a battle between Strigoi, Guardians, and Moroi breaks out. Lissa and Christian, a fire user, team up to trap Dimitri so that Lissa, after many, many attempts, can stake him with the spirit-charmed stake. Unbeknownst to Rose, Lissa was successful in doing so.

After staking Dimitri, his soul is "healed" by Lissa and returns to his body, declaring him a Dhampir once more. He then clings to her as his "savior". Everyone returns to Court.

Dimitri heartbreakingly decides he does not want to see, speak to, or have anything to do with Rose because he cannot forgive himself for any of the things that he did to her while holding her captive in Siberia while he was Strigoi. Rose is willing to forgive and forget, but Dimitri tells her to go on with her life and her relationship with Adrian because he no longer loves Rose and will never love her again. These words finally slam into Rose's head and heart, and she decides then and there that Adrian is who she loves and will be with (even if she planned to end things this summer since a Dhampir and Moroi Royal cannot truly be together forever...) Back in her room, things get pretty hot and heavy between herself and Adrian but the lack of protection brings the events to an end... almost... Rose lets Adrian drink from her.

Another huge story line is that the Queen and the Council decide to lower the age of Dhampir's becoming Guardians from 18 to 16; much to the chagrin of all Dhampirs - namely Rose. Rose's outburst during the Council hearing ends with her being removed - and hurtling a threat at the Queen. The next morning Rose is arrested and charged (and falsely accused) with high treason for killing Queen Tatiana. Adrian has the family lawyer agree to represent Rose, but just as the hearing begins, Abe - Rose's father - shows up to be her counsel. Abe promises he will not allow Rose to be convicted and executed - but Rose's outburst about how "IF she had been the murderer she would've done X, Y, Z..." doesn't help her case and she is sentenced to go to trial and placed in the same cell that Dimitri was held in. While on the way out of the hearing, Ambrose give Rose a note supposedly from Queen Tatiana herself - telling Rose that Lissa is not the only Dragomir - that Eric Dragomir had an illegitimate child, and that it is up to Rose to find this child so that Lissa can be placed on the Council. Due to an ancient Moroi law, a member of a royal family cannot gain their place on the Council unless there are at LEAST 2 members of the family.

And that is where we end with book five.

Last Words: I initially gave this book a 3-cupcake rating after I finished the last page. After giving myself 24-hours to digest everything, I did decide to bump it up to a 4. Here's why - the intense emotional content of this book really did something weird and funky to my heart! A lot of times I try to "put myself" in the shoes of the characters in order to truly gauge my rating. After doing this, I realized that the book didn't deserve just an "I liked it." While I cannot say "I loved it" I will absolutely agree with "I really liked it". Mead has no problem serving up heavy helpings of pure, raw emotions and that is something I truly love about her writing. There is something very simplistic but deep about her writing style. It's almost like you read the words on a superficial level, but your mind goes into overdrive deciphering the depth and meaning of them. It's incredible, and it's what made me change my rating. Based on her writing style alone I had to rate the book higher.

What I didn't really like, is that everything is hard for the characters, but the solution sometimes seems too easy. I am basing that statement on this event; Lissa staking Dimitri. So when Lissa leaves Court for Lehigh, we know she is trying to charm a stake with spirit so she can bring Dimitri back. As far as we know, she hasn't succeeded yet. We don't learn that she has, until she literally stakes him. It doesn't seem like there was too much struggle for her to figure it out, even though she's grappled with her spirit powers since learning of them. (Dream walking like Adrian, for example). So I think it felt a little easy to me for her to have figured it out. I do love how Christian teamed up with her to help her stake Dimitri though; however I feel that was a bit easy too? Maybe I'm just being too critical. Overall, the book was great, and I'm happy to see Lissa and Christian rekindling their relationship and also happy Rose did/is give/giving Adrian a fair-and-square chance. I'm very eager to get into the meat of book #6 because I really cannot guess what will happen with all of the loose ends needing to be tied up in this last, final installment in the series.

Check out Spirit Bound on:

Next Read: Bloodlines by Richelle Mead

No comments:

Post a Comment

Leave some love :))


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...