Written By: Richelle Mead.
Synopsis: WHEN PULSES QUICKEN NO SECRET IS SAFE.
Sydney always believed that alchemists were born to protect vampire secrets and human lives – until she met Marcus and turned her back on everything she once knew.
But she’s not free yet. When her sister Zoe arrives, Sydney can only tell her half-truths about her past. And with every word she risks exposure – and the fatal consequences.
Consumed by passion and vengeance, Sydney must choose her path once and for all. Even if that means harnessing her magical powers to destroy the way of life she was raised to defend…
My Thoughts: I did not have high hopes coming into this book and for the first half of it, I thought about giving up on this series all together. I am glad I stuck it out because to my surprise, it ended up renewing my faith in this series.
This book was definitely designed to make you feel sorry for Adrian, but all it made me do was hate him. I have been a fan of his since he appeared in Frostbite and he has been a great addition to the stories, but this was just disappointing. The only thing he and I agreed on was the fact that Marcus had stupid hair. He was immature, whiny and just plain pathetic. Once again, he meets a girl and instantly falls hard, and for anyone who knows Adrian, you know that when Adrian falls for someone, there is no turning back. He was so obsessed with Rose (yes OBSESSED), that he ignored all of the signs right in front of his face that proved that they weren’t meant for each other. He spent two months crying and brooding over her and then just like that, he is suddenly obsessed with Sydney. Now, don’t get me wrong, I love Adrian and Sydney together but TFH just had so many alarms going off in my head about this relationship that I cringe just thinking about it.
They are far too dependent on one another. The entire first half of the book was them two just obsessing over each other and Adrian being a codependent jack off. I was so proud of him when he went off to Dallas and felt like he was finally going to try to be apart of something worthwhile ON HIS OWN. But no, he kept going on and on about how much he needed Sydney which was such a turn off. When is he ever going to realize that he doesn’t need anyone? You can love someone and want them to be in your life, but the moment you start needing them (as he reminded us and Sydney so many times that he did) things become a problem. It’s like dude, when you told Rose she was your strength, she ran for the hills, you better be careful or Sydney might just meet her there… Although that seems highly unlikely at this moment because Sydney is behaving just as pathetic as he is. Even if I don’t think that the first two books are that amazing, I do think that Sydney is amazing. She is strong, independent, level headed and incredibly intelligent. In this book, I didn’t recognize her at all. EVERYTHING became about Adrian. I mean yes, YA novels (well most novels in general really) always have romance, but this was just beyond! It is like a switch was flipped when Marcus deactivated her tattoo and she literally became a different person. I felt like I was reading Twilight!
I was also not here for Adrian’s diagnosis. Like, yeah okay we all know the effect spirit has in its users, but I feel like this was going above and beyond! It was totally unnecessary! On top of that his extraordinary behavior was ridiculous, he was acting like a true life meth head doing anything for his next fix! Way too dramatic! It took a lot of the focus off of actually creating a storyline that was bigger than him and Sydney which was disappointing, no matter how great they are together. You would think that after all that has happened from Vampire Academy until now, they would have least figured out a way to keep spirit from driving people mad. Bloodlines focuses on magic so it would have been great to figure out a way for Adrian to be able to continue to use his with the help of some magical cure. I don’t like the whole prescription drug deal and hopefully he goes off of them soon and they end up finding a way for spirit users to cope without them.
But of course, things took a turn for the better when Adrian, Sydney and Neil were summoned to the Moroi Royal Court. Of course, I was thrilled to see some of our old friends, Rose and Dimitri being as amazing as ever and we also finally got to see a little more of Lissa and Christian (not nearly enough though) and of course Abe. Things just always seem to get better when they are in the Royal Court. Obviously things begin to heat up more between Sydney and Adrian and despite how annoyingly corny they can be, they have a great dynamic and great chemistry. They finally took their relationship to the next level at the perfect moment. It had me feeling giddy and so happy for them.
I used to find Sydney’s witch storyline underwhelming but now it is quite interesting. I like seeing how much she is growing and how much the magic is really taking over her for the better. I am really happy she has Ms. T. Even though Sydney does have a good relationship with her mother, it is nice for her to have someone she can confide in and who cares about her as much as she does. She really appreciated Sydney and let’s her know just how awesome she is which is essential since Sydney’s dad is always trying to make her feel less than. She needs someone she can look up to and Ms. T is that person.
Angeline of course, stole the show. She always has something hilariously clueless to say that always leaves you shaking your head. You can say what you want about The Keepers, but they are not at stupid as everyone likes to believe. She knew something was up with Sydney, Eddie and Neil which was lucky for them because she brought in her own task force of Trey and Jill and saved their asses. I was appalled when she came running down that alley and all I could do was laugh. I am so proud of her, she is going to be a great guardian one day, I mean she already is. She is a spitfire and I feel sorry for anyone who crosses her.
The ending is what drove it all home. It was shocking to say the least but I am not surprised that Zoe turned out to be the rat. They were both seriously lacking love from their father and while Sydney was lucky enough to find that in other people and learn to think for herself, Zoe was so young and just wasn’t there yet, but that still doesn’t make it okay. Poor Eddie… I understand why Sydney did what she did, but he was already in a similar situation at St. Vlad’s and this did nothing for his ego or mental state. Even though he is a dhampir, there is no way he could have taken on that many gun toting Alchemist who wouldn’t think twice about murdering an “evil creature from hell” in cold blood. Sydney is strong and I am excited to see how she handles re-education. It is going to be scary, but I am ready to see her kick ass and be her own hero.
All in all this book gets 3 stars. I would love to have given it more, but Adrian was a buzzkill.
⭐ ⭐ ⭐