skShadow Kiss (Vampire Academy #3) by Richelle Mead
Release Date: November 13, 2008
Publisher: Razorbill
Source: Library
Rating: starstarstarstarstar
Buy It: Amazon | IndieBound

It’s springtime at St. Vladimir’s Academy, and Rose Hathaway is this close to graduation. Since making her first Strigoi kills, Rose hasn’t been feeling quite right. She’s having dark thoughts, behaving erratically, and worst of all… might be seeing ghosts.

As Rose questions her sanity, new complications arise. Lissa has begun experimenting with her magic once more, their enemy Victor Dashkov might be set free, and Rose’s forbidden relationship with Dimitri is starting to heat up again. But when a deadly threat no one saw coming changes their entire world, Rose must put her own life on the line – and choose between the two people she loves most.

Review:

Okay, so I’ve decided to only review every other book in this series, because if I reviewed every one, I think they would get repetitive.  Besides, this book is interesting because we have to deal with the fallout from Frost Bite: Mason’s death, the Strigoi, Lissa’s “uncle’s” trial, and a lot more.  I cried like a little girl at the end of this book, and had to take a break before reading Blood Promise.  Still, this one is my favorite yet.

I sort of love that the Moroi have elemental abilities and yet can’t wrap their minds around ghosts.  It’s so silly.  Come on, you’re vampires!  Of course some people can see ghosts.  Rose is haunted by Mason for a good part of this book, and every time he appears, he seems to want to tell her something.  He can’t, of course, until it’s nearly too late, but let’s not talk about that.  I also loved learning about what it means to be shadow-kissed and why Rose can’t seem to control herself anymore.  I love Adrian something fierce as well.  I don’t get the tortured bad boy vibe from him, I just get a sense of his need to put up walls to combat the spirit.  It reminds me of Damon from The Vampire Diaries (though I never watched past the first season) and how he drank to combat his beast.

This summary annoys me doubly because this book is about a lot more than just Rose and Dimitri, though they are a big part.  We meet Victor again and his presence is jarring, especially when he brings up statutory rape in the courtroom.  Victor is sentenced, but I get the feeling he’s not going to go down without a fight, especially now that his illness is held at bay by Lissa’s forced healing.  He’s a two-dimensional villain, I think, having watched as Lissa grew up, sustaining friendships with her parents, and then losing his mind when he realized he was going to die.  He exploited Lissa’s talents for his own gains, and while he’s slimy and repulsive, I don’t think his motives are unrealistic.  I don’t have a problem believing that Moroi have as much an instinct for self-preservation as humans.

Okay, let’s talk Rose and Dimitri.  They’re in  love.  They have been for awhile, and we’ve known basically the whole time.  I fangirl for them on a daily basis, BUT they had sex and it ruined everything.  I’m mostly joking, but it was like a horror movie.  The virgin has sex, but then her lover is not killed but made Strigoi, something between alive and dead, something that will not remember its former life.  I cried and cried, like I said above, and cursed everyone who made me read this novels, but there are three left and I have high hopes!