Thursday, 9 December 2010

Blood Promise (VA #4) - Richelle Mead

Blood Promise is the fourth book in the Vampire Academy series by Richelle Mead. It was published on 26th May 2009 by Puffin and is 336 pages long. Thanks to the publisher for sending me a copy for review.

The recent Strigoi attack on St Vladimir’s Academy was the largest and most dangerous that the school has ever seen. It forced everyone to take note of what is really happening after the deaths of students, teachers, Moroi and guardians. Facing a life worse than death is Dimitri, who was taken captive.

Rose and Dimitri promised each other a long time ago that they would both rather be dead than Strigoi so Rose knows what she must do. Forced to leave best friend Lissa, Rose takes off on a mission find Dimitri and save him from himself. Along the way, she must be the bearer of bad news when she meets Dimitri’s family and finds out that there is a lot more to life than St Vladimir’s. The biggest question of all on Rose’s mind is whether or not she will be able to do what is needed to keep her promise to Dimitri. Destroying the love of her life will be the hardest trial Rose has ever faced.

What I thought
I have to start by saying that Blood Promise is by far my favourite in the series so far. I have really, really liked each book that came before this one but if I had to give them a star rating, they would have all been 4 stars. This is a definite 5 star book.

I felt for Rose so, so much in this book. The love of her life was captured and awakened by the Strigoi and is now everything that she has been taught to hate. Even though Rose has been away from St Vladimir’s before, she had Lissa with her so this is her first time in the real world all by herself. If that wasn’t enough, she is travelling through places she has never been to and doesn’t speak the language, putting extra pressure on her mission. I really enjoyed visiting all of the different places that Rose went to and I thought that descriptions of a couple of places in particular, like Dimitri’s house, were fantastic. I could really imagine him growing up here and baking bread after his mother made him do it himself. This part of the story made it possible for me to connect with Dimitri a lot more.

Although Rose has gone off to Siberia, her friends back at the Academy haven’t been forgotten. Due to the bond that Rose and Lissa share, Rose is able to check in on everyone and find out what is going on. I would have missed finding out what Lissa was getting up to because she has been such a large part of the previous books. Another good thing about bringing in the other characters was Adrian being able to visit Rose during her dreams. I love the way that he acts, always so full of himself but he is slowly beginning to show his true colours and let the softer side of him come through.

I really enjoyed meeting Dimitri’s family and finding out where he came from. It was so nice to see that even though they had never met Rose, they instantly made her feel like one of the family, even before they realised just how much Dimitri meant to her. I think this gave Rose a lot of time to grieve and realise exactly what happened. If she had stayed at St Vladimir’s, she wouldn’t have had the chance to do this and it would have ended up doing her a lot of emotional harm. A lot of the characters that Rose met along the way were extremely interesting, especially Sydney, the Alchemist and Abe who I hope we find out more about later on. There was something about him that I just couldn’t put my finger on and I couldn’t quite decide whether he was going to turn out to be a good guy or a bad guy.

Dimitri was fantastic in Blood Promise. Obviously turning Strigoi means turning into a complete badass at the same time. As a guardian, Dimitri was hard but caring at the same time. It was clear that he cared a lot for Rose and wanted what was best for her and I really did like this side to him. On the other hand, I am a sucker for a bad boy and I don’t know if you can get much badder than a Strigoi. I was a little worried about how this was going to play out between Dimitri and Rose but I wasn’t disappointed at all. I could completely understand everything that Rose did while she was in the situation with Dimitri and I didn’t feel like it went beyond stupid at any point. The passion between the two was very believable and even though I knew what was happening was wrong, I couldn’t help but still want it to happen a little bit. During this part of the book, I felt my heart break multiple times and just when I thought everything was over, another turn would shock me.

Once again, Richelle Mead leaves us with a massive cliff-hanger. This time, the story was left quite open in terms of the possibilities for what could happen in the next book. I was pretty certain that one thing was going to happen but a lot of other things were quite vague, leaving me excited for the next instalment. I don’t think that there was anything that I disliked about this book and that is a massive reason why it is my favourite so far. There is loads of action, passion and mystery surrounded many of the characters. I hope this carries on for the last two books in the series.


SusanKMann said...

I so need to get reading the Vampire Academy series. Great review x

Book Tweaker said...

One of my TOP Fav Series. Just like you I somewhat didn't mind the crazy fling Rose had with Evil Dimka, as long as she was with Dimka. I love how he's so evil and yet grasps every sense you have as an undead. Just finished the final installment and I'm already sad that the anticipation of the next is gone. Look forward to hearing what you think of Last Sacrifice :)

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