Short version for those already in love with Richelle Mead’s Vampire Academy series: Spirit Bound is on par with Blood Promise (Vampire Academy #4), which I hold as the best in the series.
Rating (out of 5): 5 stars
If you have not read Blood Promise, do not read the following as it contains references to events occurring in that book. If you’re up-to-date with Vampire Academy series, you’re safe to read this. No Spirit Bound spoilers — and trust me, there are surprises in the book — are in this review.
Rose will always be torn. She’s born into a world where she is expected to protect others —them first, always them first. She’s proud to do so. She has the skill, the strength and a strong sense of duty. It’s both what she wants and what tears her from her desires. Throughout the series this is the easy line to draw — her dhampir status is what keeps her from living a free life.
But that’s not the point any longer. Rose’s sense of duty is what keeps pulling her into emotionally and physically torturous situations. Her former instructor and lover Dimitri (who she attempted, unsuccessfully, to kill in Blood Promise) is still an evil and vicious Strigori, killing for pleasure and power. He now hunts her. Knowing she needs to finish what she started in Russia, Rose still can’t help but seek out a way to save him for real. If that’s even possible.
The danger involved in finding those answers means Rose must bring her beloved BFF Lissa into the way of danger. All she has ever wanted was to guard Lissa. Keep the Dragomir Princess safe. Them first.
Duty to protect Lissa and duty to free Dimitri pull at her. To make matters more complicated (and aren’t they always?), Adrian loves her and she wants so much to be with him completely. He continually surprises her, and us, with his understanding about her need to “save” Dimitri, though he wishes she would let it go and be wholly invested in him.
Spirit Bound is about choices. Duty, life and love will always reign within Rose, but can she move forward without letting go of one of the forces binding her?