In a short blurb? We talk books.
Title: The Golden Lily (Bloodlines #2)
Author: Richelle Mead
Publisher: Razorbill, Penguin
Pub. Date: June 2012
*Warning, there will be mentioning of the plot.
Hover over the rollovers to see the spoilers!*
Synopsis: Tough, brainy alchemist Sydney Sage and doe-eyed Moroi princess Jill Dragomir are in hiding at a human boarding school in the sunny, glamorous world of Palm Springs, California. The students–children of the wealthy and powerful–carry on with their lives in blissful ignorance, while Sydney, Jill, Eddie, and Adrian must do everything in their power to keep their secret safe. But with forbidden romances, unexpected spirit bonds, and the threat of Strigoi moving ever closer, hiding the truth is harder than anyone thought. (via Goodreads)
Cover? I’ve never been a fan of the Vampire Academy/Bloodlines covers. Though I will give The Golden Lily an extra point since I kind of like the type treatment and design? I like how the lilies are sprouting!
Interior? Serif font, yes! The last book I read was in sans-serif and I hated it so much. It bugged me while reading… Also, I like the embellishment of the “Chapter” headings.
Setting? It is in the fabulous Vampire Academy universe so it already has points– but Mead does even more world building in this by taking us into the Alchemists’ lair and we get to see how things operate away from Palm Springs. I thought that was a nice touch and it certainly makes us understand and sympathize with Sydney even more.
Plot? There is a great play to an earlier plot point in Bloodlines. Meanwhile we have Sonya and Dimitri working with Eddie and Adrian researching and experimenting about spirit and Strigoi to Moroi transformation. Oh and Sydney gets a boyfriend. I will say that though there was a lot going on, plot took the backseat to the character development and interaction.
Character(s)? The Golden Lily is the perfect title because this book really delves into Sydney and her tie to the Alchemists. She is pushed to see that the picture that the Alchemists painted isn’t so black and white. Is it better to be loyal to a bunch of crazy killing humans than the good and honorable vampires that have become family? This is a heavy thing to set upon our protagonist who has been taught to believe one thing all her life. It made her feelings fly all over the place.
This whole book has character development and we get more glimpses into: Jill (girl is smart and willing to do what it takes), Angeline (rough around the edges but smoothing out), Eddie (selfless through and through… but like Dimitri, will you give in if given the chance?), Mrs. Terwilliger (happy that they didn’t bluntly bring “witches” into the mix… but a more tasteful “caster” background), and of course, my love, Adrian (finally doing something with himself and caring about others). I’m clearly invested in all of these characters.
Writing? It’s Richelle Mead. We’re golden.
Pacing? Much like Bloodlines, a lot of the novel is setting up for an ultimate showdown. This didn’t bug me though because there were enough things going on with the characters and their development that I was never bored. I felt like it was well rounded, wasn’t rushed, and ended on a perfect note.
Predictability? Okay. I really dislike when I can predict what is going to happen in books and I did have most of it figured out– but it was so good that I didn’t care at all! I just wanted to keep going and going… I do wish that Richelle Mead lightened up on the hints that were present throughout the story. Have some faith in your readers! We don’t need an obvious arrow to connect the dots.
In One Word: More–as in I want MORE!
My reaction to the ending: Finally.
Overall Consensus: Yet another installment by Richelle Mead that gave me goofy smiles on my face, an urge to keep flipping pages, and left me wanting more.. 4/5 stars
Needless to say, I was the happiest girl in the world when this ARC (Advance Reading Copy) was handed to me. I jumped up and down in the hallway at work. I have no shame because I simply LOVE the characters in the Vampire Diaries/Bloodlines universe. I am eagerly awaiting the next one!
Thanks for reading my fan girl rants!
I tried to be a better person for her– but it was to impress her, to get her to want me. But when I’m around you, I want to be better because… well, because it feels right. Because I want to. You make me want to become something greater than myself. I want to excel. You inspire me in every act, every word, every glance. I look at you, and you’re like… like light made into flesh. […] You have no clue how beautiful you are or how brightly you shine.
Guys. I die. I’m melting before your eyes.