Blood Promise is the fourth in the Vampire Academy series by Richelle Mead. In it our protagonist, Rose Hathaway, travels to Dimitri’s hometown in Siberia to try to keep a promise she made to him. Meanwhile back at St Vladimir’s, Lissa faces a hidden threat.
This novel is very much a journey novel both physically and emotionally as Rose struggles to deal with the events of Frostbite and Shadow Kiss. During this journey she meets various people who help or hinder her, and who, interestingly, could have been her if she’d made different life choices.
What i liked
The Alchemists. Rose his helped by young Alchemist, Sydney, which is our first introduction to this secretive organisation. Sydney is also the protagonist of the spinoff series Bloodlines. I was intrigued by what I read about them and look forward to reading more in Bloodlines. Handy tip: don’t read the preview of the new series at the end of the ebook if you don’t want to be spoiled about the rest of the VA series. I hate it when publishers do that! Anyway… I enjoyed how Sydney’s friendship with and understanding of Rose grew as they worked together.
What-ifs. I really enjoyed how the people Rose meets could easily have been her in other circumstances. We meet a young spirit bonded couple living a quiet life out of the limelight, young women with varying relationships with Moroi from a loving and stable relationship, to the more traditional left holding the baby. We also meet a group of youngsters desperate to go out and fight Strigoi even though they are not well prepared. It shows a lot for Rose’s character development that she acts as the sane voice in that group.
Supporting characters. I really liked some of the supporting characters we meet this book, including Sydney, Abe, Mark and Oksana and Abe. They added an interesting new dynamic to the tale.
What I didn’t like
Rose’s selfishness with Lissa. True, she came through for her in the end, but I’m not certain that justifies her abandonment of her to go off and do her own thing. Whatever happened to “they come first”?
The pacing. The pacing in this one felt slightly slower to me. Too much time was spent in the whole Rose-as-prisoner scenario and the final action sequence just seemed to go on and on.
Despite these minor quibbles I gave Blood Promise five stars out of five.
PS, if you’re enjoying Vampire Academy, don’t forget to check out my giveaway.