Thursday, July 5, 2012
The Golden Lily by Richelle Mead
Released: June 12, 2012
Series: Bloodlines #2
Page #: 418
Source: My public library
"Sydney would love to go to college, but instead, she's been sent into hiding at a posh boarding school in Palm Springs, California - tasked with protecting Moroi princess Jill Dragomir from assassins who want to throw the Moroi court into civil war. Formerly in disgrace, Sydney is now praised for her loyalty and obedience, and held up as the model of an exemplary Alchemist.
But the closer she grows to Jill, Eddie, and especially Adrian, the more she finds herself questioning her age-old Alchemist beliefs, her idea of family, and the sense of what it means to truly belong. Her world becomes even more complicated when magical experiments show Sydney may hold the key to prevent becoming Strigoi - the fiercest vampires, the ones who don't die. But it's her fear of being just that - special, magical, powerful - that scares her more than anything. Equally daunting is her new romance with Brayden, a cute, brainy guy who seems to be her match in every way. Yet, as perfect as he seems, Sydney finds herself being drawn to someone else - someone forbidden to her.
When a shocking secret threatens to tear the vampire world apart, Sydney's loyalties are suddenly tested more than ever before. She wonders how she's supposed to strike a balance between the principles and dogmas she's been taught, and what her instincts are now telling her.
Should she trust the Alchemists - or her heart?"
"Most people would find being led into an underground bunker on a stormy night scary. Not me.
Things I could explain away and define with data didn't frighten me. That was why I kept silently reciting facts to myself as I descended deeper and deeper below street level."Page 1
If you haven't read Bloodlines, I highly recommend you do so. Of course, I also recommend the Vampire Academy that this series spins off from... but that's not totally necessary. Bloodlines is. And if you are remotely into vampire stories, I know you will love them. But do that before you read here, because there's bound to be spoiler things from the first book.
So, we're now following Sydney in her foray with the Moroi and Dhampirs. Alchemists are notably brilliant and careful - they stay as far away from Moroi emotionally as possible. But Sydney has to live with them for her mission. And she's worried that she might be getting too comfortable with them... one in particular. Ahem. But their group has also discovered a group in Palm Springs who are intent on doing them damage. And they're humans! dun dun duuuunnnnnn. :)
Honestly, this is another well written, well thought-out book by Mead. I've already determined that I will read any of her teen stuff in a heartbeat - and this book reminded me why. While it's the second book in the series, The Golden Lily does not appear to suffer from the second-book-slump. It's still building the story while throwing a few new monster-types at you. The main characters are still feeling each other out and finding out what they really think of each other.
Sydney is a brainiac. Like, crazy smart and has spent her whole life focusing on that. Which makes her socially awkward. To her surprise and luck, there's a guy out there who is just like her. And they figure out the dating thing together... which is fairly funny in its awkwardness. And I sort of loved watching Sydney figure things out. Very studiously and searching for the emotion in things. I'm rooting for that girl.
There was a bit more of the magic aspect in this book - and Sydney's connection to it. I was worried that it might overpower the story, but there's just enough of it to get the sense of what's going on. I kind of want to shake that teacher who is making her learn all of the spells for her independent study.
I love that there's really only a hint of love triangle - well, two possible ones. But Sydney is so clueless about those things that it takes a while for it to really develop (if at all). And it makes sense the way things turn out... and it gets me excited for the next book to see what happens! Don't even get me started on Eddie, Jill, Micah, and Angeline. Darn love circles! :)
Again, if you haven't read Bloodlines, I suggest you do so asap. The Golden Lily is a perfect follow up and I know the series will be all amazing. Now all I have to do is wait about 8 months for the next book to come out. I definitely recommend this series to those who are still in the vampire world... and for those who like a little magic throw in. You can't go wrong with a Richelle Mead book.
Other Blog Reviews:
The Page Turner
Radiant Shadows YA Book Blog
Me, My Shelf, and I
The Book Barbies
My Heart Hearts Books
A Little Shelf of Heaven