Publisher: Philomel US / Atom AU
Release Date: January 3rd US / February 28h AU
Add it: Goodreads
Buy it: Amazon / Book Depository
Is true love worth the ultimate sacrifice?
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.
In the final installment of the Nightshade trilogy, New York Times bestselling author Andrea Cremer creates a novel with twists and turns that will keep you on the edge of your seat until its final pages. A dynamic end to this breathtaking trilogy.
Bloodrose picks up exactly where Wolfsbane left off and wastes no time in ramping up the danger, the romantic tension and the action-packed adventure our favourite characters must embark on. They have the Scion, but if Shay has any hope of succeeding, then he needs to wield the Elemental Cross. And naturally each part is scattered all across the world, guarded by life-threatening obstacles and Guardians very devoted in their mission to protect it. Andrea continues to deliver in the final installment. Each mission is just as deadly and uncertain as the last. The animosity between Shay and Ren remains ever present, with Calla holding the reigns to both boys hearts. Friendships strengthen and each character has their own sub-plot, whether it's romance, fulfilling their own destiny or else struggling to move on after losing an important part of themselves. I loved the unity between everyone and especially when the pack were in wolf form - their wolfy affection was so cute!
At times Calla frustrated me with how she handled things between the boys. One minute she was in sneaking in Shay's room, the next she was nearly kissing Ren. But given the fact that Ren is an enticing piece of sex on paws who took every opportunity to mark Calla with his, Mmm I'm A Sexy Alpha, Howl For Me scent (I am, Ren, I am!), I can understand her own heart betraying her too often. Andrea does explore Cala's conflicting feelings well. She cares deeply about both boys, perhaps one more stronger than the other, but this is not a decision to be taken lightly. Choosing a pack mate is a forever type of bond. And no matter who she chooses, someone she loves is going to be hurt. I've always liked Shay, but he definitely won me over even more in Bloodrose! And to be honest, while I love Ren, I felt Shay was the better choice for her. But only by a little bit! I could understand her calculated move of not making a decision between them until the war was over, because they really needed both boys working on their side if they had any hope of winning, but I did feel bad for the impact it had on the guys, especially Ren. I guess the phrase, "All is fair in love and war," has never been more fitting.
Romantic uncertainty aside, Calla is an incredibly strong heroine. Naturally she must be, given that she's an Alpha. Her loyalty and dedication to her pack really shine through in Bloodrose. And I like a determined, independent leader in my protagonist. I adore all of the secondary characters. Mason, Neville, Connor and Adne in particular. I loved seeing them all work together, fight beside one another. Guardians and Searchers, a united front. The camaraderie and banter between them all was so much fun to read and it added the perfect balance of lightness to the dark and ominous war they were facing. And to see blossoms of romance grow stronger between many of them was heartwarming to watch!
Unfortunately I stumbled upon a major spoiler months ago, but it still didn't prepare me for actually reading it myself. That moment when my jaw fell slack, eyes grew wide and my brain desperately tried to find a different meaning in the words because this could not be happening! It absolutely broke my heart, but with war comes sacrifice. It's depressing and unfair and you just want to throw the goddamn book across the room, but it's realistic. And I liked the way Andrea handled it. It wasn't melodramatic and drawn out, but fast, shocking and painful.
Action, mystery, romance and heartache, there's never a dull moment. Whether pulse-racing scenes of the sexual kind or heart-pounding danger that keeps you worrying over the fates of your beloved characters. Bloodrose is at thrilling and emotional end to what has been such a captivating series. Get your tissues ready though, because Andrea doesn't conclude her story without first stealing a dozen tears from you! The ending is incredibly bittersweet. I'm happy with it, yet at the same time I felt a deep pang of sadness in my heart. I was sobbing as I closed the final page! It's one that tugs at your heartstrings and is guaranteed to leave a lasting impression on you. If you haven't given this series a try yet - what are you waiting for?!
4.5/5 Golden Apples!