Blood Promise – Richelle Mead

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Since Dimitri turned into a Strigoi Rose losses it. She waits till she is adult and gives her resignation letter to the academy. As she had promised Dimitri that if he turned she would hunt him down and kill him she is on a  hunt. She leaves Lissa behind, does not graduate and she goes to hunt Dimitri. She comes to know through sources that he is in Russia and plans to travel there. She gets aided by Adrian and she leaves the academy as a Rouge hunter. She reaches Russia and there while she is being attacked she meets a girl names Sidney. She claims herself as an Alchemist and helps Moroi dispose the Strigoi bodies post attack or battle and they have a large connection in the area/town that they work on. As per order Sidney takes Rose to Dimitri’s hometown and to his family. She conveys the message that he is a Strigoi and there she meets Abe who is hired by somebody and is a very wealthy Moroi. On the other hand, Lissa is doing her duty at the court and Christian complies with her. There she meets Avery and they bond and they are together most of the time. It is shown that Lissa is losing her track and ruining her relationship with Christian. She is getting drunk and is on a downward spiral. Danger awaits both of them on both sides how will Rose help herself and succeed in the task she has set forth for her and save Lissa at the same time.

My View:

This book has its ups and downs. It is a debate I guess. For those who love the series will love it but for me who likes the series this book was a bit dull. I like fast pacing books an I thought there was too much of Dimitri’s family involvement. I understand that she loved him doesn’t mean she overstays her stay. Lissa on the other hand is shown with promise and she can handle administrative works but she needs somebody always on her side to know if what she is doing is good or not. Families meet. New relations are created and past comes to light. Some relationships come to an end. The book comes to a full circle when Rose realizes that she has to go back to Victor Dashkov. Will she truly be able to kill Dimitri and save Lissa too. Time is short and there is hope when she meets other shadow kissed couple that brings light. It was an okay book. It was good when rose learns about her heritage and the possibility of saving someone she loves. The note and the gift to her at the end was amazing end. I hope Lissa and Rose will be together in doing things as they are termed as best friends just by bonds but somehow don’t share much! Both are busy living their own world. Even if you have your private lives being a best friend she should know that good and the bad that is going on in your life.

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Shadow Kissed – Richelle Mead

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Mason is dead and Rose is seeing Mason’s ghost! The new training for 6 weeks is about to start. Since the incident Mia, Eddie, Christian, Lissa and Rose have formed like an ally. Rose is all excited about the 6 weeks training for guardians who must be with their Moroi 24/7 and they will be tested on their skills. Like everyone expects Rose to be Lissa’s guardian when they announce the pairing Lissa is assigned to Eddie and she gets assigned to Christian Ozera. At first, she thinks it is a mistake but the authorities tell her that it was never decided that she will be Lissa’s guardian. She tries to do her best and they get attacked and Rose freezes (she sees Mason’s flicker/ ghost) and worse of all she fails to protect Christian and she jumps in to save Lissa. Rose and Christian get at ease as they share some friendly understanding moments. On the other hand, Lissa is practicing her spirit use with Adrian and is improving. As they share the same element Christian dislikes the time they spend practicing their use. Adrian is still flirting with Rose. Through Dimitri Rose comes to know that there is a trial being held for Victor Dashkov and the prime witness Christian, Lissa and Rose are not allowed to be a part of it. The queen herself is Adrians’s great great aunt. Rose keeps on having terrible migraine attacks and she sees many deceased people. The doctors at St. Vladimir assume that she has PTSD from everything that she has witnessed lately. She also goes to counselling. The royals are forming alliance. Rose thinks she is going crazy and Lissa is improving and learning new things with her power. With frequent migraine attacks and Rose seeing Mason and dealing with the gossip and her undying want to have Dimitri the story moves forward. New tricks are learnt and there is love and lost. Will internal politics change things between Lissa, Christian, Rose and Adrian? Why is Rose seeing Mason and other dead ghosts and how far is Lissa taking her magic?

I liked this book more than the second one. This one has mystery and it is like solving riddle and putting the puzzle pieces together. I loved the ending. I liked how Adrain and Christian has a role to play. I did not like one thing about rose and her need to keep up her feelings bottled up just so it does not upset Lissa. If she truly considered Lissa her best friend then why the secrecy? She has been keeping everything a secret form her and still considers her a best friend and wants to be her guardian. You don’t share means you don’t trust how can you be Lissa’s guardian? Since book one since with Ms. Carp to her relationship with Dimitri to her realization of Lissa and her powers to the politics to keep the royal family pure everything. She hides everything and considers her best friend form elementary school? I understand that Rose needs to protect Lissa but there are things that best friends do share!

The only thing that kept me wondering is if Rose is not in the academy how will it be called a vampire academy series from the fourth novel? I will figure that out once I am done with the fourth one.

 

Frostbite – Richelle Mead

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The story continues with Lissa now openly dating Christian and Rose still not over Dimitri. Finally, the day is here where Rose will give her test and she will be a proper guardian. However, when they reach the famous strigoi killer and a legend Arthurs place they find the house unsafe and all the royal family members and Arthur himself being dead. There is an investigation which leads to the finding that this was the work of humans siding with Strigoi. As any royal family is guarded by the silver stake which Strigoi cannot enter and it was broken. They head back and there are new guardians there to investigate the case among them is Rose’s mother. The finding leads to chaos and fear among the royal families and their children who want to be safe. The dhampirs and Moroi at St Vladimir’s Academy decide to go on ski trip during the Christmas time. This is where they meet Adrian Ivashkov. Adrian is interested in Rose and has a bad reputation of being with many girls.

The whole story is that the Strigoi with the help of humans are rising and they are in hunt to kill all the royal families. Another strike to another royal family causes distress. Lissa and Christian are deeply in love. Rose confronts her mother bringing all the emotions that was pent up. Rose believes her mother’s love of her job is more than her love for her daughter. To get her mind off she starts dating Mason and is somewhat happy. There is a push and pull with Mason as she still is in love with Dimitri. Christians aunt who comes to visit has her eyes set on Dimitri and wants to have Dimitri as her guardian. Rose having to fight with her mom as part of her training is too focused on venting out that she couldn’t dodge her mom’s punch and ends up with a bruise in her eye.

The novel is okay. I thought there was too much of Love drama of Rose and I felt bad that there was so little of Lissa. Lives will be lost people show their true feelings in the end. Rose also gets her first fight with a Strigoi. Unlikely people (enemies) make friends and ally. It is about love, loss, friendship and a little bit of maturing up and realization at the end. This book did not satisfy me in the end as the story was not much interesting. I like a little bit of mystery in a book. Like how in the first book the psi hounds and Victor and Natalie. Here there was nothing just a stupid reckless mission that Rose gets herself entangled to. I hope the next in the series will be better.

 

Vampire Academy – Richelle Mead

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It starts with Rose/Lissa (I forgot which one) waking up form a nightmare of a crash.

Rose and Lissa are living together and Rose is the guardian/protector of Lissa. Lissa or Vasilisa is a Moroi. It is the term to describe the vampires who have not gone rogue. She belongs to one of the 12 royal vampire families, they are not related by blood and she is considered a princess. Rose or Rosemarie Hathaway is a Dhampir the protector and future guardian of the Royal family. They are on a run and have been for past one year since their escape from the academy. As Lissa is a vampire and needs feeding Rose offers herself. After that, she notices that there is someone watching them. They try to escape. As she just let herself feed to Lissa she is weak and is outnumbered. They get taken by a guy named Dimitri who sounds foreign (Russian) and he is a guardian. He was assigned to bring them back to the St Vladimir’s Academy. In the academy, they meet Victor Dashkov who would have been the king if he did not suffer from Sandovsky’s Syndrome. He is her uncle and a close family. His daughter is Natalie who is the only person happy to see them.

Then there are Strigoi who were once vampires and because they drank blood form Strigoi they become one. Once in the academy, they are separated in their classes and everything else. Rose is very protective of Lissa and she must train hard to become capable of what she would have been if they had not left the academy. On the other hand, Lissa being the royal person must deal with her own issues. There she meets Christian Ozera the guy who is scorned by everyone because although he is a Moroi and his parents were Strigoi and they were about to convert him but the guardians attacked and killed them before that. Everyone fears that one day he might turn into one of them.

Lissa and rose share a bond where they can understand each other’s emotions. They call it a psychic bond. Rose can enter Lissa’s mind and see what she is doing at that moment. Victor uses the term Shadow kissed and Rose is obsessed finding out what it means as their great grand ancestor and one of the first Vampires Lord Vladimir shared the same bond with Anna. Rose and Lissa also share a secret where once there was a dead crow and Lissa brought it back to life and at that time Ms. Carp warned Rose not tell this to anyone and stay away.

Series of incidents start happening where there is animal gutting and scaring Lissa. Lissa, on the other hand, starts liking Christian and somehow Christian comes to know about how she used compulsion to run away from school. How she survived all these times by feeding on Rose. Rose also starts liking Dimitri. With shocking teenage twist and turn the novel is good.

My View:

I liked the book. I found the acting of Rose in the movie too much annoying and smartass. However, I hate to admit that Rose’s portrayal in the movie is justified. It is what is in the book. I like how the book and movie were mostly same. I know and I read how people were disappointed over the movie as it did not do justice. I feel like for book lover none of the movies will ever do justice to the book. The overall storyline was the same. I liked the ending where she talks with the crow saying how you are also bonded with Lissa aren’t you? I liked the concept of what shadow kissed means. I can’t wait to read more about Cristian and Lissa. Dimitri and Rose. I did not find Dimitri’s character as much interesting in this book. I liked the back story of the crash and Lissa’s brother. It was a good and easy read.

Family Pictures – Jane Green

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Meet Sylvie who is happily married and has a daughter. One fine day police arrive at her doorstep to let her know that there was an accident and her husband passed away. As time passes she meets Mark who is loveable and kind and she starts loving him and they get married and have been for more than a decade. Mark is a loving guy and everyone in the community loves him and see him as the ideal type. Her love for her deceased husband was more of young love but with Mark is everything a secure love. Due to the nature of his work he must travel a lot and spends less time with his family. As her life seems perfect her relationship with her husband is good, he is planning to settle down with his work and be with her more, her daughter is about to go to college far away from home but she is grown up. But what she doesn’t know is Mark is not on the same page and her perfect daughter is slipping away and has serious case of anorexia and bulimia.

Meet Maggie a perfectionist who has a perfect life with her family, good social relationships and is a good and outstanding member of the society. She faces the same loneliness as Sylvie. Even her husband is always on the go and comes home not so very often. She has a perfect older son named Chris and a perfect daughter named Gracie who is in relationship for some time with a good guy and a younger son who is just growing up.

Eve plans on all girl’s trip to New York and although Sylvie objects her best friend convinces to let their daughters go without letting Mark know. There she meets Gracie and as both don’t smoke weed or drink they hang out and they instantly hit it off. Getting bored by the new Yorkers and their advanced talks they head out and Gracie invites Eve to her house. Eve agrees just because she has a crush on Chris and he liked her too. They go to Connecticut and meet the family. The next morning, she sees their family pictures and her whole world crumbles down.

This is in detail than what is said on the book cover but this is till what the book says. This is almost half of the book. The book follows the horrible discovery. How both families cope with the situation and how life is not what it seems. It questions who is the second one and how did it happen and why did it happen? Whose fault is this? It talks about how mothers try to cope and put their family together during the hardship.

My View:

It was an okay story but reading the book I immediately came to know what the surprise is. It is very easy to guess. What follows is interesting and how story ends. There are two meaning of Family pictures one is when Eve finds the picture and the ending scene. But I found the ending a bit cheesy as every story does not need to work out in the end. Both can live a separate life.

What I liked was how the youngest son is very understanding and is the pillar that is holding the family together and he is the glue that is connecting Maggie and Grace.

The Mortal Instruments – Cassandra Clare

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This post will be my first to rate the characters that I most like to the least liked. I have listed the characters and then I will start writing about the characters that I most like to the least liked ones and the reasons.

Clary Fray, Jace Herondale, Simon Lewis, Isabelle Lightwood, Alec Lightwood, Magnus Bane, Luke Garroway, Jocelyn Fray/Fairchild, Valentine Morgenstern, Max Lightwood, The Lightwoods, Sebastian, Maia and Hodge.

  1. Jace Wayland: Also confused as Jace Morgenstern and finally comes to know he is Jace Herondale. The reasons I liked this character is because he is a loner in his own way. Is adopted and assumes his father is someone else and comes to know that he is the same person but different name and later comes to know he technically does not even have a name. His biological parents have a sad story. I liked how people slowly come to know that he is not Jonathan but they die or end up keeping it as a secret. There is something so hidden about JAce that I loved this character. I was wondering if this novel would not be about Clary but Jace then it would still make sense. Jace has a complicated history than Clary. Till the end he was scared about losing Clary.
  2. Magnus Bane: I love Magnus. A high warlock who is bisexual and is completely in love with Alec. The forbidden love of a shadowhunter and a downworlder. It was amazing. He is quiet most of the time and just pops up when the Shadowhunters need help. Without Magnus the book would be dull. Without Magnus the shadowhunters would be trapped. What there not to like a warlock who dresses in bright color as he pleases and sparks blue aura and has so much magic in him.
  3. Clary/ Clarissa Fray: She is Jocelyn and Valentines child. The first book she practically did nothing and was confused about her feelings for Jace and when she came to know that Jace is her long-lost brother Jonathan she was not so much heartbroken. She kept on protecting Simon and supported Simons view over Jace. Then in the second novel she was dating Simon and it was not until the Farie queen asked her to kiss Jace that she realizes she truly loves him and dating Simon is wrong. Jace although hurt over knowing that he can never be with Clary and also the fact that Clary has accepted them as a brother and sister leads to Jace breaking Clary’s heart by saying he will respect her wishes and will see her as a sister. This was the best part. The third book she is just doing her thing and accepting Jace’s feelings and helps Jace rise back form dead. They come to know they are not related. She is dumb and a smart girl.
  4. Simon Lewis: I liked this quirky character only after book 1. Throughout the book one he knows Clary is oblivious about his feelings. He wants to date her and be with her so he is just stubbornly tagging along. From the time he becomes Vampire and he grows up. He knows how he cannot be with Clary and is smart in his own way. He helps Jace and he can do anything to help Clary is the best part. I loved the transition of this character from reckless gamer nerdy guy to smart and understanding guy.
  5. Alec Lightwood: This is one of my favorite character in the TV series but here he is okay. I liked Alec’s love for his sister and brother and his little crush on Jace. Seeing how this book was written in the year 2007 I found it okay that Alec might want to hide his sexuality. The book was published in the year 2007 so it was written before that. Coming from a respected family he tends to hide his identity. He was a good brother and his coming out in front of his family was a good character.
  6. Luke Garroway: Previously known as Lucian Graymark. First a shadowhunter then turned into a warewolf. He has been in love with Jocelyn but respected her wishes to be with Valentine. He is loyal and trustworthy. He will protect his pack and Clary at any cost. He is a kind-hearted character.
  7. Jocelyn Fray: Jocelyn Fairchild. Feel in love with a good soul and still loved him when he turned bad. Loves her daughter and I disliked how she wanted to protect Clary but I understand why she did what she had to do. I liked how she realizes her love for Luke is true.
  8. Isabella Lightwood: Also, known as Izzy. She has a far big role in the TV series than what is said on the book. The book has lot of roles but not action wise. She is bold and knows what she wants. She is kind hearted and well-liked by everyone. She is attracted to Simon and not because he is a vampire and has a charm but she liked him from the start. Just sad that there was no story of two of them.
  9. The Lightwood’s: They are a powerful family who were granted freedom post uprising. There is a little boy called Max who wears glasses and reads a lot. I liked this character popping in from time to time. Felt bad that Sebastian killed a little boy.
  10. Sebastian, Hodge and Maia: Sebastian was introduced in the last book. He plays a sly character. I liked how brave and sadistic and demonic he seemed. I felt like if there is a back story to Maia then why is it not related to the story? She was just a character which if not there it does not make any difference. She likes Simon and he likes her back but her back story of how she became a werewolf was completely unnecessary. If it is related to other 3 books it might make sense but not for this. Hodge, I understand how he must have felt. Being a nobody he was trapped in the castle post uprising. He did what he had to do to survive. Most of all he loved the kids.

Valentine Morgenstern: He is a charismatic believer. I felt angry over his character but then I felt sad for him because no matter how bad of a character he is he loved Jocelyn. He did things his way but his love for her was pure. Even Luke could not accept he loved Jocelyn but Valentine knew how his best friend felt about his wife.

 

The City Of Glass – Cassandra Clare

The story takes off form the time the heartbroken Clary (as jace respected what Clary wants and told her he wants nothing but just Clary as a sister). She meets an old friend of her mom who says she knows how to save her and to save her mom they need to go to Idris to meet Ragnor (warlock). She tells Jace and they plan on going together. However, Jace does not want Clary to go with him so he lies to Clary about the time they are opening the portal (by Magnus) and calls Simon just before they leave. Simon is shocked over this and disagrees but keeps quiet when Jace says all he wants is to protect Clary. Things turn ugly when they are attacked by demons and Simon gets injured and Jace drags Simon to Idris. Clary comes to know that they left and creates a new rune and travels with Luke to Idris and lands on river. She is poisoned and Luke goes to meet an old acquaintance (his sister) to help Clary.

There at the manor in Idris they met the new family and Sebastian who is about Jace’s age. Friends become enemies and enemies become friends. Some trust is broken and some trusts are gained back. They must fight the battle with Valentine and demons/ downworlders join forces to the good and evil side. Some false relationships and some hidden relationships come to light.

I personally liked the story and the ending but I just did not like reading about the fight/war as there are many characters and it is boring after some time. I hate the fact that it is always the new young crowd that is the savior and who has special powers and the people on the top are the ones who must make the decision. It is a very well written novel and all the loose ends gets tied and you will not be left wondering what happened. I loved how the past stories about the uprising is related to every new characters life and story is related. It makes so much sense and it is wonderful.

I am glad I read the series. May be in due time I will also read the remaining 3. But I will assume this as one set. 😊 Happy reading!