Rose loves Dimitri, Dimitri might love Tasha, and Mason would die to be with Rose…
It’s winter break at St. Vladimir’s, but Rose is feeling anything but festive. A massive Strigoi attack has put the school on high alert, and now the Academy’s crawling with Guardians—including Rose’s hard-hitting mother, Janine Hathaway. And if hand-to-hand combat with her mom wasn’t bad enough, Rose’s tutor Dimitri has his eye on someone else, her friend Mason’s got a huge crush on her, and Rose keeps getting stuck in Lissa’s head while she’s making out with her boyfriend, Christian! The Strigoi are closing in, and the Academy’s not taking any risks… This year, St. Vlad’s annual holiday ski trip is mandatory.
But the glittering winter landscape and the posh Idaho resort only create the illusion of safety. When three friends run away in an offensive move against the deadly Strigoi, Rose must join forces with Christian to rescue them. But heroism rarely comes without a price..
I have very mixed feelings about the first book in this series but the end had turned things around enough for me to want to continue the series. So how did book two fair? Apparently this is exactly my type of catnip.
So this one picks up pretty much where the previous book left off. Everyone is still reeling/recovering from the stuff that happened previously. But still, it’s school, and business as usual. Classes are happening and there’s even a ski trip planned. After all, can we even call ourselves an elite private school without a class ski trip? 😉 But of course things are not as well as they seem. Rose is dealing with a lot and it doesn’t help when her mother suddenly arrives on scene.
Rose is still an asshole but I kind of don’t mind anymore? Also, towards the end of the book there’s a hint that maybe some of Rose’s irritable behavior might have a deeper meaning. Even if that doesn’t come to fruition, I think I’ve sort of gotten used to Rose being Rose aka ‘mad at the world always’. There doesn’t seem to be a whole lot of reason for her attitude other than feeling left out and alone, but that could be enough of a trigger and honestly I empathize with her here for the most part. Also, in regards to her mother, I kind of feel like she has the right to be angry in some ways.
So in this book there are a lot of feelings. Rose is dealing with her mother and all the past issues this has brought up. She’s also confused because of her feelings for Dimitri and trying to make those go away by giving a lot of attention to another guy. She’s also feeling upset and lonely because Lyssa doesn’t have as much time for her anymore and they’re not as close as they used to be. It doesn’t help that she’s also putting up with resentment from some of the other students and, oh, a brand new character enters the scene trying to charm her as well (is this the start of a harem?). Hello, new guy. Oh, I like new guy. Yes, he’s also older than Rose, and also kind of a jerk, but he’s also got charisma coming out of his eyeballs. What can I say, I’m a bit of sucker for arrogant charming guys (in fiction only, please).
But what this book also has is a threat level that has risen significantly from the first volume. Suddenly, shit has gotten very, very real. People are being murdered and everyone is on edge. (Not on edge enough to cancel the ski trip however, don’t be silly.) I honestly loved how the tension built until the end and there was a lot of stuff that went down that really made Rose have to think and reconsider and even grow up a little bit. A lot of the book Dimitri keeps throwing at Rose how she’s still just a kid, and it’s true in a lot of ways, but by the end of this one she’s gone through some things that have seasoned her a bit. I hope that she continues to grow as a character.
Overall, I had a lot of fun with this book. It’s a bit silly at times, but it does also hit a lot of the right spots for me as a reader. Definitely looking forward to seeing where the rest of the story goes. 4/5 stars.