Tuesday, July 3, 2012

The Golden Lily by Richelle Mead

Author:  Richelle Mead
Genre:  Young Adult/Urban Fantasy
Publisher:  Penguin Australia (Imprint: Razorbill)
Publication Date:  12th June 2012
ISBN:  9781921518478
Stand alone or series:   Bloodlines #2
Pages:  448 pages
Book Received from:  Penguin Australia (Publisher)
First Lines:  Most people would find being led into an underground bunker on a stormy night scary.  Not me.

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 the 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 Brayden, 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 Thoughts:
I have to say The Golden Lily was an awesome read.  So far, this series just seems to keep getting better!  I know that the Bloodlines series may not quite trump The Vampire Academy series but I have high expectations that this will sure come close to it.

Richelle has got this awesome knack for great characterization.  With Angeline, the new addition to the group and quite the shake up the group seems to need, the group seem to work together well.  Sydney seems to be getting along well with the vampires (For an Alchemist) but so much pressure is on her to be objective and not getting too close to them always plays on her mind.  Especially when she sees what can happen if she's caught doing more than her job.  This in turn plays a big role in the way that she acts around the others.  Almost standoffish at times when she begins to turn things over in her mind.  I sure hope that in future books she begins to start thinking for herself more than letting an organisation like the Alchemists tell her how she should be.  I'm seeing the beginnings of doubt surface there throughout the book so fingers crossed.

I have to say right now, I'm really liking Ms Terwilliger.  I love the way that she works Sydney's study time with the practical side of things and even though Sydney knows what she is trying to do, she still feels the need to complete the tasks Ms Terwilliger sets her.  I feel like this is going to play a very large part in future books.

Brayden was one character I just couldn't warm up to.  I don't know whether it was the fact that he sounded like such a know-it-all or whether it was because he didn't know beauty even if it slapped him upside the head but he just rubbed me the wrong way.

The story itself was quite engaging.  I found myself completely pulled in to Sydney's life once again and while there are small things that annoy me about her, Richelle has done a great job in keeping her true to her character.  I was hesitant about liking Sydney in the first book but book two has definitely had me on Team Sydney more so.  I just wish she would get a clue when it came to boys lol.  I suppose that just comes with experience right?

This was a great book and one that you should give a go!

Fave Line:  If your eyes weren't open, you wouldn't know the difference between dreaming and waking. You know what I'm afraid of? That someday, even with my eyes open, I still won't know.

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