Bloodrose (Nightshade #3)
by Andrea Cremer
Summary: 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.
Source: I bought a digital copy of this book for Kindle (after reading the first 2 books via library).
Why did I even read this series?! I have a love/hate relationship with the books. I read the first two books through my library and was on the fence about purchasing this book, but ultimately I wanted to see how the series ended. I saw the lower review ratings and I thought, well it can’t be that bad. I figured the worst case was that the “team” I was on would lose and I’d be somewhat disappointed, but it would be worth the read to find out what happens and figure out how it all ends. I should have just told myself no. I should have listened to all of the other reviewers who read this book and said no to my curiosity, because Bloodrose made me so angry!
Maybe 3 stars is harsh, but I hated the book and I hated how the whole story was wrapped up. I hated Calla in this book, too. She could try and convince herself she knew what she was doing and she was sacrificing her feelings for the good of her pack, but really she was just an indecisive girl playing at love. In earlier books, I loved her ferocity and strength as an alpha and I also liked that she did have moments of weakness. In Bloodrose, though, I felt like she was less honorable as a person and basically lying to herself. It isn’t often that I end up liking the losing love interest in a book. Usually, I understand I’m on the losing side and I still like the winning love interest and I’m fine. In the Nightshade series, however, I didn’t like Shay (the winning love interest) at all. And Ren wasn’t a typical losing love interest because he was the one with more of the jaw dropping appeal and cocky personality. He wasn’t just a friend or anything I’m used to. I hated seeing Shay steal any of the spotlight. Despite how much I dislike Shay, he isn’t the reason my rating is so low. I rated the first two books just fine even though he was the winner slightly in both of them.
The redeeming factor in Bloodrose are the characters. I love Ren and I was glad to see more of him in this book. Connor was great comedic relief and his banter with everyone made me laugh. I loved the rest of the pack just as much as I did in book 1. They all have distinct personalities and they make the books worth reading.
I hate to spoil the plot of the book in anyway, but the things I hated about it are mainly spoilers. So, if you haven’t read the book(s), don’t read any of the blacked out paragraphs. I am about to ruin the ending.
The entire book, Calla is putting off making a decision between Shay and Ren, though she seems to lean a little towards Shay for the majority of it. She feels like she’s avoiding making the decision so Ren doesn’t change his mind about being on their side of the war. This really bothered me. It makes the entire plot seem weak. Would Ren really not do the right thing out of spite? Why is Calla’s decision on Ren or Shay always tied to the right or wrong side of a completely separate war? In book 1, I felt like she picked Shay because he was opening her eyes to the truth about her life. In this book, I was appalled at she’d think Ren would completely ignore the truth about his entire being if she didn’t choose to be with him. Ugh. It’s so juvenile. And not only that, but I felt like she was incredibly cruel and selfish to spare his feelings just to get what she ultimately wants as far as the war goes. It really made me dislike her character.
Eventually, Calla, Ren, and Shay all become aware that she loves both of them. It’s out in the open and the guys wait for her decision. I really don’t know who she’d pick if given the choice. And that’s because the author kills Ren off!!! I was so appalled. I mean, the whole fight was just crazy and I didn’t really believe it. I really thought the author killed him off to make the decision easier. I am usually all about people dying in tight situations because it adds a level of danger and realness to the story, but this death felt entirely too convenient for my liking.
And the end. Really? I’m just not happy with the end. I knew somewhere in book 2 that it was going to be an issue if and when the Searchers won the war with the Keepers. Since the Guardians are an abomination of nature, I knew somehow there would be an issue. I guess I just assumed they’d let it go or find some happy medium. And maybe because I’m human, the ending just seemed really weird. I wasn’t satisfied with it at all.
Overall, I love the Nightshade series. I do. But I kind of wish I never read it because I hated the way it all ended. This makes me feel so conflicted because my review is totally harsh, yet it was so harsh because I care deeply about the characters. The author is great and I will definitely read more of her books. This isn’t a bad book because it’s bad, it’s a bad book because I wasn’t satisfied with the fate of the characters,which means that somewhere along the line, the author got me to care about them. Because I love the series and the emotions I feel about the characters, this book is 5 stars. And because I hated the way it ended and the way things turned out, this book is a 2 star. In the end, a 3 star rating is the best I could do.
I would probably recommend this series. It's a great wolf series and I did enjoy it. It really IS worth the read, no matter what I said in my first paragraph. =)
Labels: Review, sequel