Shadow Kiss by Richelle Mead
It’s springtime at St. Vladimir’s Academy, and Rose Hathaway is this close to graduation. Since making her first Strigoi kills, Rose hasn’t been feeling quite right. She’s having dark thoughts, behaving erratically, and worst of all…might be seeing ghosts.
As Rose questions her sanity, new complications arise. Lissa has begun experimenting with her magic once more, their enemy Victor Dashkov might be set free, and Rose’s forbidden relationship with Dimitri is starting to heat up again. But when a deadly threat no one saw coming changes their entire world, Rose must put her own life on the line–and choose between the two people she loves most.1
Rose has always lived her life for others. “They come first” has always been the life of a Dhampir and they are the Moroi. Moroi are like civilized vampires with magical abilities. They are not as strong as the vampires we have come to know and expect. Instead that strength is reserved for the Strigoi. A Strigoi is what a Moroi becomes if they kill someone by drinking someone dry. They can also be turned. The Strigoi in the Vampire Academy series are depicted as monsters with red eyes and without souls.
Rose, as a Dhampir, has sworn to protect the Moroi and kill the Strigoi. As devastating events continue to take place Rose must start to take care of herself first. Stubborn and sworn to protect, Rose chooses to handle things on her own terms to continue protecting the ones she loves. Mysterious things begin to happen to Rose and she questions her sanity. When things become too much for her to handle she must turn to others for support even though those she trusts do not fully believe.
In Shadow Kiss, Rose is faced with so many different situations that test her and begin to plant seeds in the way she has always seen the world. She has been taught to see things only one way, but through meeting different people and experiencing traumatic events we see the possibility of change.
Just as Frost Bite started to change my opinion on the Vampire Academy series, Shadow Kiss has followed suit. There is a lot that goes on in this book and even more to come. The story ends with so many questions for the future and what will become of the past. As Rose grows and matures, I find the story grows along with her. If you are into vampires and supernatural fiction the Vampire Academy series is worth checking out. You just have to give it a bit of faith and see past some of the shallow scenes to the deeper more exciting storyline.
1. Book summary courtesy of a Richelle Mead’s webpage