Tough, brainy alchemist Sydney Sage and doe-eyed Moroi princess Jill Dragomir are in hiding at a human boarding school in the sunny, glamorous world of Palm Springs, California. The students–children of the wealthy and powerful–carry on with their lives in blissful ignorance, while Sydney, Jill, Eddie, and Adrian must do everything in their power to keep their secret safe. But with forbidden romances, unexpected spirit bonds, and the threat of Strigoi moving ever closer, hiding the truth is harder than anyone thought.
Populated with new faces as well as familiar ones, Richelle Mead’s breathtaking Bloodlines series explores all the friendship, romance, battles, and betrayals that made the #1 New York Times bestselling Vampire Academy series so addictive. In this second book, the drama is hotter, the romances are steamier, and the stakes are even higher.
“I tried to be a better person for her– but it was to impress her, to get her to want me. But when I’m around you, I want to be better because… well, because it feels right. Because I want to. “
The Golden Lily is a solid addition to the Bloodlines series. It does suffer somewhat from second book syndrome. The series knows what it wants to do by the end, and the series knows how long it wants to take to get there. It just has to find something to fill in the middle with. I can’t help but wonder if this would have been a better series had it been shorter, as I was rather bored until the last five minutes of the book.
The conflict of this book was the characters and their problems. Okay, that isn’t exactly true. There is a major problem, but it has almost essentially no airtime, is over incredibly quickly, has no real consequence to the rest of the series except to introduce a new secret society, and I almost completely forgot about it. Otherwise the entire book is about drama related to the characters. Every major character has a part of this neverending drama cycle.
The problem in the book is almost an afterthought. This is a first person narrative series, and that leaves Sydney running around being a mother to everyone and putting out all the fires. Every single person in this, except Sydney, needs a keeper so she ends up being it. And they get into sooo much trouble. In addition to all this, Sydney also has to play scientist and help the moroi figure out why former strigoi can’t become strigoi a second time.
Then there is her “boyfriend”, of which no one can even remember his book. Every single time anyone talks about him, he gets a new name. Hell, even I can’t remember it now. He is an absolute asshole. He is only around to make other characters realise things about themselves. I hate him. I was glad I forgot about him until I went to write this review. He is so annoying. He is exactly like Sydney, but even more clueless when it has to deal with people. Awful relationship.
To contrast, Adrian is doing everything he can to be together with Sydney. It is so obvious he likes her. It is also absolutely adorable. I ate up every moment of it. It was the best part of the book, by far. Even if it requires Adrian to lie to Sydney. I honestly cannot wait to read more of their relationship together. Adrian has always been my favourite character, he needs someone good. I’m not quite convinced Sydney is good enough for him, but that is a high bar to hit. She is growing on me, though. And, if he thinks she’ll make him happy, I guueeesss I’ll have to deal with her.
Though…what the hell is it with Richelle Mead and secret societies in this world? I can’t even remember how many there are now. There is so many. And no one seems to care. Someone always seems to know about them, and it is just no big deal? Bah. Now there are two more. The first is a branch of the alchemist that broke off centuries ago, and are even more violent. As you can imagine, they are exactly what you think they are. No surprises, nothing new, boring. The second is witches, of which apparently Sydney is one. Only, Sydney thinks it is unnatural. So we get the whole book of Sydney complaining how she won’t do magic again and everything to do with this guilt. Yawn.
While I did tend to be bored, I did enjoy parts of this book. I’m mostly just looking forward to where the series as a whole goes. This seemed just like a small step to the end.
To read more reviews for this series, check out the Bloodlines series page!