Monday, 11 March 2013

Review: The Golden Lily by Richelle Mead

The Golden Lily (Bloodlines #2) - Richelle Mead
ISBN (UK) - 9780141337142
Publisher - Razorbill June 12 2012 

Sydney Sage is an Alchemist, one of a group of humans who dabble in magic and serve to bridge the worlds of humans and vampires. They protect vampire secrets - and human lives.

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? -

I was a bit late to the spin-off Bloodlines series, I raced through all the Vampire Academy books which I started reading around the time #3 came out but for some reason when Bloodlines came out I never even thought about buying a copy! In January though I added it to my library requests, loved it and added Golden Lily immediately. It came in my last lot of books but with all the travelling I've been doing I didn't pick it up until Thursday, I then didn't put it down until I finished it - been quite a while since I sat up until the early hours reading! I'm sure just about everyone in the blogging world has reviewed this one so I'm not going into huge detail, hopefully there will be no spoilers (maybe stop here if you haven't read it though, just in case!) and I'm just going to talk about what I liked. 

I wasn't a fan of Adrian in the Vampire Academy books, I liked him as a character but I suppose my inner teen didn't like him for Rose and knew that Dimitri was it for her. Now though, well... Adrian is quite simply my favorite character, not so much after Bloodlines but definitely after Golden Lily. He is insane, completely and utterly, but I love that he lets Sydney in and allows her to do things for him. In Bloodlines the book seemed to setting the scene and giving us a glimpse of characters that were going to be involved, Golden Lily went straight into the story.  I love that Sydney started to let her hair down a bit whilst wondering constantly if she was doing the right thing, the new boyfriend whose name no-one could remember was a stroke of genius, Jill and Angeline, Eddie too, all became secondary characters in this one and I adored that we got to see more of Dimitri - even if it was without Rose and felt odd to not have them together. Sydney became more real in this one, although she still lacks any sort of common sense considering she is so smart (a bit like my brother-in-law who has a PhD but can be completely ignorant of everyday things!) and the whole 'I'm an Alchemist, I can't be friends with Moroi/dhampirs but oh look, all my best friends now are Moroi/dhampirs' is becoming irritating, the other Alchemists will find out so I hope this doesn't get dragged out too long. The conflict that Sydney 'feels' becomes less and less believable the more she seems to have internal monologues about the whole situation.

Before I ramble on too much longer I just want to say that that ending was downright mean, unbelievably my library doesn't even have a copy of The Indigo Spell on order so I've had to buy it, I'm hoping it will be here before I go away on Thursday so I can read it on the train, and I've preordered The Fiery Heart. Well, there have to be exceptions to the book buying ban!


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