Book Review: Spirit Bound (Vampire Academy #5) by Richelle Mead

After a long and heartbreaking journey to Siberia, dimitri's birthplace, Rose Hathaway has finally returned to St. Vladimir's---and to her best friend, Lissa Dragomir.  It's graduation, and the girls can't wait for their real lives outside of the academy's cold iron gates to finally begin.  But even with the intrigue and excitement of court life looming, Rose's heart still aches for Dimitri.  He's out there, somewhere.

She failed to kill him when she had the chance, and now her worst fears are about to come true.  Dimitri has tasted her blood, and she knows in her heart that he is hunting her.  And if Rose won't join him, he won't rest until he has silenced her...forever.

But Rose can't forget what she learned on her journey---whispers of a magic too impossible and terrifying to comprehend.  A magic inextricably tield to Lissa that could hold the answer to all of Rose's prayers, but not without devastating consequences.  Now Rose will have to decide what---and who---matters most to her.  And in the end, is true love really worth the price?

I managed to wait four days to read this book---I don't know how I did it but I made myself save it for this weekend.  It was worth the wait!  But now I don't know how I can move on from this story to another book.  Cue up Sinead O'Connor's "Nothing Compares To You."  Because the Vampire Academy series is just that good.  If you haven't read this series, go immediately to the bookstore or library and check it out.  It is excellent!  We have love, action, friendship, rivalry, devotion, evil enemies, plot twists galore and forbidden love (our absolute favorite) in this series.

I was not a fan of vampire novels or anything paranormal until I read Twilight.  That started me on the paranormal genre and I've been unstoppable ever since.  This is so strange for me, because I'm the kind of person who can't watch The Shining, who still cringes when I think about the little girl ghost in Wait Until Helen Comes and who used to think I couldn't stomach the "weird" stuff likes vampires, werewolves and ghosts.  The paranormal books I've read are are just really good stories set in a fantasy world.  I think the extra layer of the story happening in a total fantasy world is what makes them so alluring.

Okay, the rest of the review is for people who have already read the book, because I'm suspending all of my usual rules and including spoilers in my review.  Can I do it?  Will my Type A, OCD tendencies allow me to break my own rigidly set protocol?  For something so great, I think I have to!  So, if you haven't read Spirit Bound yet, stop reading here and come back once you've finished it.  Unless you're like Stacey and you like to know the ending first!  :)

Spoiler Alert:
Spirit Bound starts with Rose's guardian trials.  Rose and Lissa don't stay at the academy long, with graduation happening in chapter two.  From there, they go to court for a very short stay, then the action starts.  After they sneak out of court, I became unable to put the book down.  The plot moves that fast!  Several major questions that Blood Promise left us with get answered in Spirit Bound:

1.  Will Rose and Lissa break Victor out of prison?
2.  Will Rose and Lissa save Dimitri from being a Strigoi?
3.  Will Lissa and Christian get back together?
4.  Will Rose and Dimitri get back together?
5.  And what about Adrian and Rose's relationship? 

I have to say here that I am not a fan of Adrian.  Adrian has his moments of tender-heartedness but is mostly a side character to me.  He is the equivalent of Jacob in Twilight to me:  a big part of the story, but just not "the one."  Maybe my diapproval is because of his alcohol use/abuse, maybe it's because I think Rose would really lose her mind if she got too close to another spirit user who battles the depression associated with spirit, but Adrian is the definition of the B-team to me.  He's a nice guy but I only have eyes for Dimitri. 

Here are my official predictions for what will happen in Last Sacrifice. A central character will have to die, doesn't the title alone allude to that?  Lissa's illegitimate half-sibling will come into the picture and complete the quorum and Lissa will take her place at the royal court.  I'm undecided if Lissa will go to college.  I'm thinking she'll take classes part-time and fulfill her court duties part-time.  Sydney will come testify at Rose's trial that they were having their online chat at the time Tatiana was killed and Rose will be released from custody.  Rose will live, I'm sure of that.  I think Lissa and Christian will live too.  I'm predicting that Adrian will somehow sacrifice himself for Rose.  I'm not sure how or what, but that's what I'm hoping.  He will say that he can't stand the pain of living with spirit's darkness, of not having a shadow-kissed bond with someone to siphon the darkness away from him.  He'll say that his life is too painful and meaningless but it will mean something if he dies for love.  And I think that we will get our happy ending with Rose and Dimitri.  At least that's what my fervent hope is.  If Richelle Mead does us wrong with the ending, she'll have scores of angry young women to deal with.  And we know how scary we can be when we're mad...

Just One Gripe:
Richelle Mead uses the phrase "no pun intended" three times in this book.  That's two times too many.  This is a very inconsequential gripe, in light of how great Spirit Bound is.

The Best Thing About This Book:
The plot.  I was shocked several times---and that doesn't happen often!

Appropriate for a younger audience:

Characters:  5/5
Plot:  5/5
Setting/Imagery:  5/5
Originality:  5/5
Ending:  5/5
Total Score:  25/25

Read First:


  1. I love this review!!!... but I don't think Adrian is "B Team"... He is just the polar opposite of Dimitri :)

    I don't think we have heard the last of Victor..uugghhh

  2. What a great review. Oh I can't wait for Last Sacrifice. I wonder what's in store for us. Hmm.. I've started to really like Adrian though.. Dimitri.. well he obviously still cares about Rose and I am wondering if he is the character to die.. but would Richelle Mead do that to us after just bringing him back. I'm not sure.

  3. I know...I have to hope that she wouldn't kill him off right after giving us a taste of him being a dhampir again. What worries me is that none of her other two series are finished yet so we don't know if she likes happy endings or "real world" endings.

  4. i don't think adrian is "b team" he is the guy who will never capture rose's heart like dimitri did, unless richelle decides otherwise. I'm in love with adrian after SB, he is such a sweet guy and there is more to him then the arrogant/snarky persona. he might sacrifice himself for rose but that would be out of character for him and the word "sacrfice" doesn't have to mean death,it might be just a metaphor.

  5. I think there's more to him too, and we really got to know him better in SB. But when he chomped on Rose's neck...that's when he became B-team to me. He's Rose's Jacob, if you know what I mean. He wasn't first, so he'll never measure up to Dimitri...

  6. Okay here is my thinking. . . I think we are going to find out in the next bood that Queen Tatina has set up her own murder - you are going to find out that underneather the surface she is doing it for the greater good. Rose is going to go on a journey to find the truth and I think Victor and Dimitri will play a role in helping her. Another theory is that maybe Adrian and his parents killed the queen to a power struggle - Adrian didnt seem to shocked to find out his favorite aunt got stacked. We may even find out and this is just a theory that he has faked his feelings for Rose from the beginging. By the way Kelly/Natalie you can tell Stacey that Dimitri loves me more!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  7. The best book in the series so far!!! Adrian is just ok. Rose won't settle for that.

  8. You are so right Abby! I'm so glad you liked this series. What's next for you?

  9. @Tanya I think you better deliver that information to Stacey... that kind of news is just begging for "hair, teeth and nails"... :)

    @Abby this was by far the best book... I can't help but think that Richelle is a romantic and won't do the unspeakable to end the series... at least I really hope not.

  10. A little late to the party (found you via @CassieClare for her Clockwork Angel review you did), but I have to say that I'm Team Rose! I love her with both Dimitri and Adrian. I think I'd be happy with either pairing as the endgame and feel bad for whatever guy didn't get her. They're both good for her in different ways.

    Also, SO GOOD. I just caught up with series! Read all five books that are out in about.. four days? So worth the lost sleep. Blood Promise was definitely my least favorite. I thought it dragged quite a bit for most of the book.

    Anyway... can't wait for the next one! (and I love your theory about Sydney coming to testify. I never thought of that and it's totally a good idea!)


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