I don’t really have the time at the moment to be able to post proper reviews of the last books I’m reading for the year so instead I’m going to do a short summary of thoughts on three of them, hence the three in one. This might be a new sporadic occurrence in the new year when I finish my break and get back to writing again.
Note: Two of the books are the last two in a series (The Vampire Academy series by Richelle Mead) and unfortunately have spoilers. Please keep that in mind before deciding to read this post because it’s hard to avoid spoilers in the tail end of a series and I don’t want to ruin it for anyone if they don’t wish for it. Those two are the last two summaries to help avoid the spoilers.
One last thing: If you’re after the synopsis for the books all of the pictures lead to them on other sites (GoodReads and VA Books).
A Study In Scarlet and The Sign of The Four by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
I love the character Sherlock Holmes. I even love the character Watson, which you think would be great for reading the books, but it really is a bit of a problem. The problem is like the majority of people I have been introduced to those characters via other media and loved them from those, when I finally got to read the book (it comprises of two stories) I was a tad disappointed because it bored me.
I think if it wasn’t for my love of those characters I would never have finished reading it, but luckily they saved it for me. It was not only that though, but also Doyle’s idea. Here is this man writing in the late 1800s and he had such great ideas of deducing and scientific know how. I realise that it was the 19th century and there were some great advancements for civilisation at the time, but it’s still great to read something that can be considered visionary in some parts especially when it comes to the identification of blood.
If you haven’t read these books about Sherlock Holmes and want to then I suggest not reading them based on a love of the characters, but for the story itself.
Spirit Bound by Richelle Mead
I started out thoroughly enjoying this series, eating it up and plowing through the books, but I think a combination of story line and not reading in quick succession once again has left me not being as engrossed as last time. Don’t get me wrong, I still read these books pretty quickly and still had a hard time putting them down, but I didn’t feel anywhere near as much enjoyment as I did with the first few books.
Once again Richelle Mead has shown she is a great writer in that the plot is well formed, her characters are well defined, there is character development as well, and there is enough detail without it being over the top. It really is a book for those who are avid fans of the VA series and who do not mind love triangles.
Last Sacrifice by Richelle Mead
I hate love triangles. To me, if they don’t outright ruin a story, they damage it to an extent. I think there is enough drama in fictional relationships (and real ones) without there being the added drama of love triangles. It’s overkill, in a lot of cases unnecessary, and usually highly predictable. I understand that Rose needed that in some ways to learn certain lessons, but I always feel that there is another way for characters to develop and learn without the aide of a love triangle.
I also hate it when a person who cheats or is so dishonest is written with an amount of sympathy or has been written in such a way, with emotional investment on the reader’s part, that you feel you must sympathise or take their side when they do something like Rose did. It justifies the act in the story (and I have a major problem with it in all forms of media as a plot idea, it is used to excess in so many rom coms and other romantic movies it makes me want to puke) and that always makes me uneasy.
Once again I appreciate Mead’s writing skill and style, for the reasons mentioned in the above summary, but the whole love triangle angle took it down a few notches for me and I lost a lot of respect for the character Rose. Rose went from being a character I enjoyed in the beginning to a character I don’t ever want to read again. It’s great for me then that this is the last book following Rose’s story and I’m still going to read Bloodlines because I really like a lot of the other characters. She also tied it up neatly enough, allowing of course some room for Bloodlines, but all in all I think Last Sacrifice is a good end to the VA series for those who love it.