Sunday, March 1, 2015

Audio Review: The Ruby Circle by Richelle Mead

The Ruby Circle
(Bloodlines #6)
Author: Richelle Mead
Narrators: Emily Shaffer and Alden Ford
Release: February 10, 2015
Goodreads   Amazon
The epic conclusion to Richelle Mead's New York Times bestselling Bloodlines series is finally here...
Sydney Sage is an Alchemist, one of a group of humans who dabble in magic and serve to bridge the worlds of humans and vampires. They protect vampire secrets—and human lives.
After their secret romance is exposed, Sydney and Adrian find themselves facing the wrath of both the Alchemists and the Moroi in this electrifying conclusion to Richelle Mead’s New York Times bestselling Bloodlines series. When the life of someone they both love is put on the line, Sydney risks everything to hunt down a deadly former nemesis. Meanwhile, Adrian becomes enmeshed in a puzzle that could hold the key to a shocking secret about spirit magic, a secret that could shake the entire Moroi world.

The final Bloodlines novel! And, by default, the end of the Vampire Academy era. It makes me sad, but this was a terrific end that wrapped up Adrian and Sydney's story in an unexpected way and also gave Vampire Academy fans a glimpse into how other beloved characters from both stories end up! There's always a possibility that Richelle Mead will dip back into the Vampire Academy world at some point, but as of right now this is the end my friends.

Its always extremely difficult to write a review for the last in a series because I just want to discuss ALL THE THINGS but I can't because that would spoiler you all! So I will keep this review fairly short.

At the end of the previous Bloodlines book fans, Silver Shadows, Adrian and Sydney surprised readers by getting married. Knowing what we all know about the world of the Moroi, readers probably expected that this book, The Ruby Circle, would have to deal with the fallout of that choice. And it did. The Ruby Circle did focus a lot of energy on how everyone around Adrian and Sydney felt about and dealt with their relationship, including the couple themselves, but there was so much more going on that this quickly became a secondary focus.

The main plot of this one is the search for a kidnapped Jill. When we found out who one of the perpetrators was I was a little surprised because it seemed like a strange twist and an odd character to bring back, but I suppose it did make the whole thing more personal so I can understand Mead's decision to choose this particular person as this book's "bad guy". This plot was interesting and held most of the danger and excitant of the book.

A second plot line involved Adrian's connection to fellow spirit user Nina and her missing sister Olive. This plot line was more interesting to me because it ended up becoming more important than the hunt for Jill at several points throughout the story. And this plot line made several unexpected twists and turns that led to an ending to this series was was unexpected, but I think readers will REALLY enjoy!

To me, The Ruby Circle was a near-perfect ending to the Bloodlines series. We even get to see how things turn out for all our favorite characters from the series, including Dmitri and Rose, who are in this one more than other books in this series. I would be extremely pleased to hear that Mead was writing another spinoff in this world, especially since with the way this one ended I think she left herself a decent opening for just such a spinoff. However, if this really is the true end for all of these characters then I'm happy with the way things ended and I very much enjoyed the ride!

Notes On the Narrator: As always, I immensely enjoyed the audio for this book. I think Emily IS Sydney. She manages to balances Sydney's sweetness, toughness, and wry intelligence in her delivery of all of Sydney's lines. Alden Ford is also a fantastic Adrian. I like hearing Emily Shaffer's version of Adrian's voice when the chapter is from her POV vs Alden's actual voice for Adrian when the chapter is Adrian's POV. They make a great pair of narrators together and I highly recommend checking out this series on audio. When I switched over to listening to these releases on audio I never went back.

Recommended for fans of: Vampire Academy series, Adrian, smart girl heroines.


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