Rose returns to St. Vladimir’s Academy with a celebrity-like status due to her Strigoi kills. Her accomplishment is overshadowed by her guilt over Mason’s death.
This is the book that we see Rose change the most. She is learning more about what it means to be shadow kissed and how her role fits in with Lissa’s use of spirit magic. The more Lissa uses spirit, the darker her becomes, but Rose is able to suck that darkness away by absorbing it herself, making her moody, angry and could lead to insanity like the legend of Anna.
While Rose knows absorbing the effects of spirit is detrimental to her health, she has been indoctrinated into the belief that Lissa must always come first in all things, so she is willing to serve in all ways. This means going to college where Lissa wants to go, taking the classes Lissa wants to take and not following her heart with Dimitri. When people start to question Rose about what she wants out of life and how she feels about Lissa’s needs always coming first, it plants a seed of doubt in Rose that she must reconcile. When a series of traumatic events unfurl, Rose finally makes a decision to put Dimitri’s needs first, which could ruin her friendship and her future as a guardian forever.
This is probably my favorite book of the series so far. Rose grows up a lot. Her crush on Dimitri becomes love and the best part is that he finally admits that he loves her too. Just as they commit to a future together, something absolutely horrible happens and Rose faces the impossible choice of whether to fulfill her guardian duties to Lissa or a promise to Dimitri. I rarely cry in books, but this one left me breathless. Word to the wise, make sure you have the next book on hand, because you will want to start it immediately after this one.
Overall, I give Shadow Kiss…
Plot – 5 bookmarks
Character Development – 5 bookmarks (Rose really grows up in this one. We also see Dimitri’s softer side.)
Love Story – 5 bookmarks (!!!!!)
Fight Scenes – 5 bookmarks
Political Intrigue – 4 bookmarks
Dream Cast (otherwise known as who I pictured while reading) - Rose (Sophia Bush), Lissa (Blake Lively), Dimitri (Ben Barnes), Christian (Michael Steger), Jenna Boyd (Mia), Ed Westwick (Adrian), Tinsel Korey (Tasha), Prince Harry (Mason), Josh Hutcherson (Eddie)