February 22, 2013

REVIEW: The Indigo Spell (Bloodlines #3)

The Indigo Spell (Bloodlines #3), by Richelle Mead
Published February 12, 2013
Publisher:  Razorbill
Format:  e-book - own
Genre:  Paranormal Romance, YA
To Buy:  Amazon * Barnes & Noble * The Book Depository

Rating:  4.5 STARS

(From Goodreads) In the aftermath of a forbidden moment that rocked Sydney to her core, she finds herself struggling to draw the line between her Alchemist teachings and what her heart is urging her to do. Then she meets alluring, rebellious Marcus Finch--a former Alchemist who escaped against all odds, and is now on the run. Marcus wants to teach Sydney the secrets he claims the Alchemists are hiding from her. But as he pushes her to rebel against the people who raised her, Sydney finds that breaking free is harder than she thought. There is an old and mysterious magic rooted deeply within her. And as she searches for an evil magic user targeting powerful young witches, she realizes that her only hope is to embrace her magical blood--or else she might be next.

Populated with new faces as well as familiar ones, the Bloodlines series explores all the friendship, romance, battles, and betrayals that made the #1 New York Times bestselling Vampire Academy series so addictive—this time in a part-vampire, part-human setting where the stakes are even higher and everyone’s out for blood.

I was so anxious to read The Indigo Spell, mainly for one reason. Adrian needs his HEA. Don't you think it's time already? I mean, the poor guy got the shaft in a big way at the end of the Vampire Academy series. It was clear that he was still miserable in Bloodlines. Finally, in The Golden Lily he has learned to love again, only to be pushed away. How can you not feel for him? And when he says things like this, you have to wonder how Sydney has resisted him this long:
"You can think whatever you want, do whatever you want... I'm going to just go on loving  you, even if it's hopeless." - Adrian
Sydney is a character that I've had a very hard time warming up to. Perhaps it's because she's really not very warm herself. I realize she's been indoctrinated into thinking and acting the way she does. But, to me, she just seems like a big, walking, talking dichotomy. Sydney is a genius. Yet, how she thinks about some things is so backwards and stupid. She knows that the way the Alchemists believe is wrong on so many levels. Her book experience and her own feelings tell her that. Yet, she fights and fights. It's so frustrating, and it makes it seem as if she's much stupider and weaker than she's supposed to be. It makes it so hard to like her. 

And, yet, that's what I found myself doing. Sydney made some tough choices in The Indigo Spell, and in doing so, wormed her way into my heart as a pretty kick ass chick.

Meanwhile, on the flip side, Adrian was always a bit of a flippant ass in the VA series. In Bloodlines, he's got a chance to shine on his own. He's still a flippant ass, but it's tempered with sweet words and kind gestures. He's kind of amazing, you know?
"...you're my flame in the dark. We chase away the shadows around each other. Our backgrounds don't matter. What we have is bigger than that. I love you, and beneath all that logic, calculation and superstition, I know you love me too." - Adrian
There was a ton of pre-release day hype surrounding the enigmatic Marcus Finch and who he was. I was very happy that he didn't dominate the storyline, as I was a little afraid he would. He is a new character, and I did appreciate the new blood injected into the mix. But, let's face it - I was really reading mostly for Sydrian. You do find out exactly who Marcus Finch is, what he wants from Sydney, and how he might shape her future. Thankfully, it's not at all to the detriment of the main story line and the development of Sydney's and Adrian's budding relationship.

I love the way this story is working out. There's self-contained parts to each book that are brought up and resolved within the cover. But, then there's the over-arching story of the Alchemists' involvement in Sydney's and the Moroi's lives. That story has stretched across three books, and is now really starting to heat up. It's very nicely paced - we're not given too much information at a time so as to feel overwhelmed. And, we're given just enough to hold our interest. The same characters we're building a relationship with stay with us, while new characters drift in and out of the story. 

I think The Indigo Spell was the best in the Bloodlines series yet.

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