Series: Bloodlines #2
Published by Razorbill on June 12th 2012
Genres: Fantasy, Paranormal, Young Adult
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<p><p>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. They protect vampire secrets—and human lives.</p><br />
<p>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.</p><br />
<p>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.</p><br />
<p>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.</p><br />
<p>Should she trust the Alchemists—or her heart?</p></p>
Continuing on with my binge read of the Bloodlines series, the first words that come to mind with The Golden Lily are that it was a solid sequel. That probably comes off sounding negative but really it isn’t, I swear. I honestly enjoyed the book and found myself a little more engrossed with the characters and plot than its predecessor. BUT, it just didn’t captivate me as much as I hoped it would as a sequel and as much as Vampire Academy did at this point in that series.
I hate to constantly compare the Bloodlines series with Vampire Academy but it is extremely hard to separate the two in my mind. Perhaps it is how highly I have placed Vampire Academy on a pedestal or maybe I am still missing the spark I expected at this point in a series. A big positive – Sydney is growing on me. She remains quite prudish and proper in many ways but the shell surrounding her begins to crack and we see her start to lighten up more and more. A large reason for this is how Sydney starts to connect with her ‘fake family’. They are starting to be more than just vampires or a job to her but actual friends she cares about. And that is definitely scary to a girl who wants to be the job. And oh how crazy amazing she is at putting others ahead of everything else. She drops everything to be there for them. She’s not afraid to face her fears if it means helping someone. And despite her reservations, she works hard and tries to be the best. We get to see a different side of her this time as she tries her hand at dating someone who is probably a little too much like her. Their bond over academics but lack of chemistry was actually quite comical. Though obviously I was hoping and praying she would see the light and what was right in front of her, Adrian! Watching him start to develop feelings for Sydney and all the little ways he’d make instances to spend time with her… adorable! NEED more of that!
The plot introduces us to group called the Warriors of the Light, or human vampire hunters. I really like this concept being thrown in purely because I feel like it fits in this world and this series. Sydney also starts to come around to the world of magic and her own natural ability within. Looking forward to seeing how that plays out throughout the books as well.
I’m sucked in and anxious to move forward with this series. Still waiting for that BAM! moment, a spark, the unpredictable nature of Richelle Mead’s writing to hit me. Hope to find that with The Indigo Spell.