Saturday, May 9, 2020

Reread Review: The Golden Lily by Richelle Mead

Author: Richelle Mead
Series: Bloodlines #2
Audience: Young Adult
Genre: Fantasy, Paranormal
Publisher: Razorbill
Release Date:  June 12th 2012
My Rating: 4 Cups
Source: My copy
Blurb (from Goodreads):
Sydney Sage is an Alchemist, one of a group of humans who dabble in magic and serve to bridge the worlds of humans and vampires. Alchemists protect vampire secrets - and human lives.

Sydney would love to go to college, but instead, she's been sent into hiding at a posh boarding school in Palm Springs, California - tasked with protecting Moroi princess Jill Dragomir from assassins who want to throw the Moroi court into civil war. Formerly in disgrace, Sydney is now praised for her loyalty and obedience, and held up as the model of an exemplary Alchemist.

But the closer she grows to Jill, Eddie, and especially Adrian, the more she finds herself questioning her age-old Alchemist beliefs, her idea of family, and her sense of what it means to truly belong. Her world becomes even more complicated when magical experiments show Sydney may hold the key to prevent becoming Strigoi - the fiercest vampires, the ones who don't die. But it's her fear of being just that - special, magical, powerful - that scares her more than anything. Equally daunting is her new romance with Braydon, a cute, brainy guy who seems to be her match in every way. Yet, as perfect as he seems, Sydney finds herself being drawn to someone else - someone forbidden to her.

When a shocking secret threatens to tear the vampire world apart, Sydney's loyalties are suddenly tested more than ever before. She wonders how she's supposed to strike a balance between the principles and dogmas she's been taught, and what her instincts are now telling her.

Should she trust the Alchemists - or her heart?

My Bloodlines buddy reread with Jamsu @ Jamsudreams continues. I have to say that I'm happy for the fact that it feels like I'm reading these books for the first time all over again. Since I only read these books only once before, a lot of the stuff that happens is a shocker for me, so I get to be surprised by them again. The Golden Lily had a few elements that I remembered, but it was mostly about the smallest of details and not the important stuff. I did have as much fun now as I did the first time I read the book.

I truly enjoyed The Golden Lily. We get to see this group of characters grow closer and closer, almost like the family they pretend to be, and I loved that. I was more focused on the dynamics between each of them this time, more than I was the first time I read this book. I noticed now that, even though I still didn't like her character, Angeline is a good guardian for Jill. She's trying to learn how to be better, even though at the same time she's trying to get Eddie's attention.

Sydney is faced with some hard truths this book and I was here for that. First, she gets to see the re-education center, and what Keith is going through. It's the first time, I believe, when she is put face to face with what may become her fate if she lets herself get too close to the dhampirs and Moroi, and she's unsettled. She's definitely scared, in her subconscious, that this may be where she'll end up at. Second, a hard truth slaps her in the face from Adrian. Sydney has an obsession with her weight, an unhealthy one. Just like she gave Adrian a piece of her mind, Adrian does the same to her. He isn't mean about it, he doesn't tell her those things to hurt her, or to make fun of her, but because she needs to hear it. I loved that entire scene, and if I had to choose, I'd say this is my favorite scene from the entire book.

We see Adrian interact with his father, and I absolutely forgot that this happens now. I hated it just as much as I did the first time. We also see Adrian be a love-sick puppy, getting a car that he can't drive, apparently, just to have Sydney teach him how to drive manual cars. I think this is one of my favorite things about Sydney, her love of cars. It's such a non-Alchemist thing for her, and it's such a great thing for her to have outside of that group that she was forced into.

Just like I forgot that this is when we get to see Adrian's showdown with his dad at the restaurant, I forgot this was the book when Sonya gets kidnapped. I realized this was it once Adrian got the car, but I didn't remember this was when we get to meet the vampire hunters. I enjoyed having that group introduced so early, because we get to understand who Trey is and why he is so secretive about his family.

I love seeing Sydney learn more spells, even though she absolutely hates it. I feel like the more spells she learns, the more she breaks away from the Alchemists, and the closer she gets to Adrian, so I fully support her doing magic.

All in all, I really enjoyed this book, as I was expecting. I don't remember much about The Indigo Spell, so I'm very curious to see what's going to happen next for the gang.

As always, please remember to check out Jamsu's review of The Golden Lily.

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