Author: Andrea Cremer
Series: Nightshade #3
Calla has always welcomed war.
But now that the final battle is upon her, there’s more at stake than fighting. There’s saving Ren, even if it incurs Shay’s wrath. There’s keeping Ansel safe, even if he’s been branded a traitor. There’s proving herself as the pack’s alpha, facing unnamable horrors, and ridding the world of the Keepers’ magic once and for all. And then there’s deciding what to do when the war ends. If Calla makes it out alive, that is.
Reading level: Ages 14 and up Audio CD Publisher: Listening Library (Audio); Random House AudioI can not tell you how much I love this reader! She is so fantastic! I think she is my second favorite (next to Carol Monda) female reader. She seriously brings this series to life. Her voice for Calla is so perfect. I feel like in this book Calla is so exhausted and heart-broken and torn, and Rebecca portrays that so well. She also has distinct voices for each of the other characters, and I'm so impressed by how she maintains each voice, and I can easily identify who's speaking by the way she makes them sound. She even does a fabulous job for the male voices. I honestly forget that it is one woman reading, and that Shay, Ren, Conner and the others aren't actually talking. If you haven't started reading this series, or if you're debating on whether or not you want to pick up books 2 & 3, I suggest getting the audio. It made all the difference for me! If you're looking for a new audiobook to start, you will love this one!
Unabridged edition (January 10, 2012)
Reader: Rebecca Lowman
Buy the audio: Amazon
Reading level: Ages 14 and upHmmm....wow. I'm not sure I've heard or felt such mixed feelings about a book since Mockingjay. Actually, I didn't have mixed feelings about Mockingjay, I just hated it. I am completely torn about Bloodrose, however.
Hardcover: 416 pages
Publisher: Philomel; First edition (January 3, 2012)
Buy the Book: Amazon
At a Glance:
Andrea Cremer is an amazing writer and has written a beautiful but heartbreaking story. Although I often wanted to slap some of the characters, I am still glad that I read this series and would recommend it to anyone who enjoys a deeper, more complex paranormal romance......and doesn't mind having their heart ripped out.
First off, let me say that the way I feel about the characters, doesn't necessarily reflect how I feel about the writing or the story. I think Andrea Cremer is a fantastic writer and storyteller, and the entire Nightshade series was written beautifully. The pacing is often slower, which makes the audiobooks a perfect fit for me, but there is also a lot of action, mystery, heartache, betrayal, and love.
Who says you have to love the characters to love the book?
If you read my goodreads updates, you'll know that I'm not exactly a fan of Calla. I found her to be one of the most self-absorbed characters that I've ever read. She seriously frustrated me constantly, mostly about Ren and Shay, and mostly things that are complete spoilers. I think what bothered me, was that she was almost like a fake feminist. Like she really wanted to be a feminist, and she tried WAY TOO HARD at it, but still got it all wrong. Instead of being a strong female, she was manipulative, instead of standing up for herself, she hurt others, instead of having the courage to put others first, she took the cowardly route by lying and deceiving whenever it was convenient. I felt like she was the female version of a male chauvinist pig. I just wanted to scream, "YES, CALLA, WE GET IT!! YOU DON'T NEED A MAN! BUT THAT DOESN'T MEAN YOU HAVE TO DESTROY THEM!" There was one part, where Calla forces Ren and Shay (both of whom she's endlessly stringing along and lying to) to swear their loyalty to her and then drink each other's blood in front of everyone. I mean, how absolutely humiliating and degrading! Can you imagine if Calla was a man, practically sleeping with two different girls, lying to them, then forcing them in front of everyone (who all know about him stringing them both along) to basically bow down to him and drink each other's blood? I feel like the world would explode from the feminist anger. However, toward the end of the book, Calla makes a couple of decisions that redeemed her a little for me (though she was never honest with the boys). I won't give it away, but will just say it was an act of selflessness that made me start to forgive her for her previous behavior.
Then there's Shay. UGH. I have never liked Shay. Even when I hated Ren (in book one), I still didn't like Shay. He was just so.......nothing. Seriously, it was like he just a side character that wasn't very interesting. I completely fail to see what Calla finds so appealing about him, unless it's just the fact that she can basically treat him however she wants and he'll just roll over like an abused puppy. Really, he was just not my kind of guy.
Luckily there were many other fantastic characters.
I seriously loved all the supporting characters. My favorite had to be Connor. I am in love with Connor. He was so funny, witty, charming, protective, and just so much fun to read. Every time he spoke I had a smile on my face. I adore him. Then, of course there's Ren. Ren and I have an interesting relationship. In Nightshade, I absolutely hated him. He was such a total jerk. But something happened in Wolfsbane and Bloodrose. Ren went from an arrogant, sexist, jerk, to a broken, changed and compassionate person. I absolutely fell in love with him. To think about what he had to go through as a child, and what he's learned as an adult, it just breaks my heart. I also love Sabine, Bryn, Adne, and all the other Wolves and Keepers. There were so many of them, and they all had such distinctive personalities. I don't know how Andrea kept them all straight, and kept them so true to themselves, but it was impressive!
Then there's the storyline.
The storyline was seriously imaginative and smart. It's obvious that Andrea Cremer has a brilliant mind. This was no simple story. There is so much history, backstory and originality in the Nightshade series. There's really nothing like it out there that I've ever read. I loved it and thought it was so well done. With one exception. If you've read it, you know of what I speak. I feel like this one thing that happened was an easy out, and if it had to happen, it should have been handled differently. But, I guess that wasn't up to me. :(
I have to say, that although I'm not happy with the way the ending happened, I am happy with the ending. Does that make sense? I don't know that there could be a happy ending with this book, and for me, this ending fits. It's what fits for Calla. It's not what I would want, and I still don't know that I like Calla, but I'm glad that this is the way things ended for her.
If you read Nightshade, and didn't care for it, you should definitely still give Wolfsbane and Bloodrose a chance, and I really recommend it on audio. If you read the other two, and are scared to read the third....yeah.....you kinda should be. But do it anyway!
Hmmm....I'm drawing a blank. Any thoughts? Raised by Wolves by Jennifer Lynn Barnes is a good werewolf book! :D
- Profanity: Heavy
- Sexual Content: Heavy
- Violence: Heavy