Here I am for the final time with a Vampire Academy book reread review! On the off chance you missed the previous posts, this is a part of Vampire Book Club's Reread Challenge. Like for SK and BP, I'm skipping a discription, but if you're interested: Goodreads. Reread reviews for previous books: Vampire Academy, Frostbite, Shadow Kiss, Blood Promise. And once more SPOILER warning!! Unavoidable BIG spoilers for all previous books.
It goes without saying at this point that the Vampire Academy series is one of my favourite and one of the strongest YA series out there. Books 1-4 are all fantastic and Spirit Bound was one I was once again very excited for and that fully lived up to expectations.
That said, there are parts of Spirit Bound that I had a very hard time reading. There are parts that made me laugh out loud, others that shocked me and left me breathless, and others that I just outright loved. While I didn't love or even like parts of Spirit Bound, I understood exactly why Richelle had things play out as they did and I was left very satisfied with the story as a whole. Rose was not always the smartest girl in this book. She made a lot of spur of the moment decisions, based more on emotion than logic or sense, and she paid the price for it. I wanted to shake her at times and tell her to wake up, to stop being an idiot and realise the truth.
I really enjoyed how some of the lesser side plots with various side characters played out as well. Nothing in this series has worked out easily for anyone, there are no easy answers or easy outs, and I love that! Actions have consequences and Richelle never ignores that. One of my favourite side characters from this series is Abe Mazur, and I was very happy to see more of him here in Spirit Bound and I'm more than a little curious to see what role he will play in the final book.
I loathe spoilers and to avoid leading ones here let me simply say that a lot happens in Spirit Bound. Several things from previous books are dealt with, at least particially, whilst still new questions appear. Spirit Bound is very different to the previous books as Rose and the others no longer students, but adults trying to find their way and place in the Royal Court. There is some great and unexpected character development throughout the book and the ending was shocking, a real smack in the face, leaving me hungry for more! It's a hell of a cliff hanger, though not quite the intensity of Shadow Kiss [book #3]. Spirit Bound was an emotional roller coaster. Rose may have been out in the world killing Strigoi, but it doesn't mean she's ready for everything she faces. I wish I had some certainty about at least a few things that could happen in Last Sacrifice, but the truth is, Richelle has surprised me with every book to date and I don't see Last Sacrifice being any different. Bring it on! Rating: 10/10
First time I read Spirit Bound I kept putting it down and walking away because Rose was tearing me apart with her decisions and actions. It was that, or throw it at the wall. I did then and still do now, believe that it was completely in character for her to be as she was, but that doesn't mean it was easy for me to read or that I didn't want to smack her repeatedly, yelling at her that she was being an idiot. Rose doesn't show her pain or uncertainty. She wasn't about to get over what happened to Dimitri within weeks, but she wasn't going to stand around and pine either. She was pro-active, tried to move on because it was the 'right' thing to do, she was caught between hope and reality. Sure little things could have been handled a little different and still work to the same effect, but as I said, I felt what happened was entierly within character so I'm happy with it despite not agreeing with certain things!
This is the first time I've reread Spirit Bound because it was so hard to get through that first time. I wondered if I'd have such a strong reaction again, but actually, I loved rereading it probably more than I loved it first time around. It helped knowing what was going to happen and none of the uncertainty about whether Dimitri would be saved or not because obviously I already knew the answer to that one. The tension in the ending was almost as high as first time around, and the moment that almost did have me throwing the book at the wall (repeatedly) made me cringe just as hard as well. But the final two and half chapters = total love!!