Richelle Mead, 2009 by Razorbil, 503 pages.
Synopsis from Goodreads:
Rose Hathaway's life will never be the same.
recent attack on St. Vladimir's Academy devastated the entire Moroi
world. Many are dead. And, for the few victims carried off by Strigoi,
their fates are even worse. A rare tattoo now adorns Rose's neck, a mark
that says she's killed far too many Strigoi to count. But only one
victim matters . . . Dimitri Belikov. Rose must now choose one of two
very different paths: honoring her life's vow to protect Lissa—her best
friend and the last surviving Dragomir princess—or, dropping out of the
Academy to strike out on her own and hunt down the man she loves. She'll
have to go to the ends of the earth to find Dimitri and keep the
promise he begged her to make. But the question is, when the time comes,
will he want to be saved?
Now, with everything at stake—and
worlds away from St. Vladimir's and her unguarded, vulnerable, and newly
rebellious best friend—can Rose find the strength to destroy Dimitri?
Or, will she sacrifice herself for a chance at eternal love?
This fourth installment of the Vampire Academy series had me turning the pages, yet again. The story was fast paced and there were some great new characters.
I really liked some of the themes of this book, especially how Rose feels she has to explicitly choose between the man she loves and her best friend. The other books have been leading up to this, but this one dealt with it more fully. And, I'm sure, the next book will too.
I liked Rose again in this book. I love seeing strong female characters who can stand up for themselves, but who are flawed as well. Rose is relatable and kiss-ass fun at the same time. I am hoping that her relationship with Lissa gets better in the next book. Not that it's bad, I would just like to see the growth.
Mead uses the fun devise of Rose being able to go into Lissa's head to keep us up with what is going on at the Academy while Rose is in Russia. I thought this was a clever way to keep both story lines going and developing.
There are parts to this book I wasn't thrilled with, especially during some of Rose's time in Russia (I liked the parts with Dimitri's family, but not some of the other times, I'm being vague so as not to spoil anything). Overall, though, I did enjoy the book and will be on the lookout for the next one. I felt Rose is really starting to come into her own and I can't wait to see what she does in book 5.