Finished Date: March 14th, 2012
Publisher: NAL/Penguin USA
Series: The Watchers #2
My Rating: 5/5!!!
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VAMPIRE'S KISS just about blew my mind away. I am utterly and irrevocably in love with this series. All over again. This is the romance that Hunger Games sorely lacked - any proper ones, anyway. And I loved it. Loved it, loved it, loved it!! Seriously, there's no other girl out there right now as happy or as depressed as me right now. Happy to have read such a miraculously, insanely intense and awesome book, and depressed because the next book in the series, BLOOD FEVER, will only be released in August.
My Brief Summary
VAMPIRE'S KISS begins where ISLE OF NIGHT ended, at the beach where our heroine, Annelise "Ann" Drew, and her other Acari classmates are undergoing physical training when Master Alcantara shows up. Sexy, dangerous and mysterious, he singles out Drew and pulls her out of the class and into another - dancing. And after those mortifying lessons? German etiquette and protocols. And after that? Dining etiquette.
Seriously? Not only that, Alcantara's been seeing her more often lately, and his manners has become more...direct and, could it be? Flirtatious. Drew doesn't know what to think. She knows she's playing with fire, but she can't help it when Ronan seems to be distancing himself, and having private, meaningful gestures with another Proctor. And on top of all the emotional conplications she has to sort out, she has to keep her wits about her, cause the moment she lets her guards down, her peers are coming in and playing for keeps. Fighting to win. Fighting to survive. And she'd best not forget that.
Also with the upcoming off-island mission with Alcantara looming ahead, she'll have to double up her efforts in training. Cause she's going to learn that not all vampires in this world are good. Or at least more inhumane, if you count kidnapping girls to fight to the death, and eviscerating someone to instill fear in the rest good.
I don't know how, but Wolff has managed to contain everything that I've ever wanted in a book in VAMPIRE'S KISS - that stunning love-triangle or love-square which wasn't overly done, that blood-pounding action, suspense, and thrill in all those fatal encounters and plotting and scheming, and just trying to survive on that island, the emotions that roiled within me was constantly on the all-high, and I loved every single, minuscule moment of being captivated by her words.
*Prepare yourself for some epic fangirl gushing*
One thing that strikes as the most outstanding feature of this book was the added romance. There were just subtle hints in ISLE OF NIGHT between Tracer Ronan, Master Alcantara and Drew, keeping you wondering if Ronan and Alcantara were actually hinting at something more. But in VP, there were many times when Alcantara is clearly flirting with our pretty, smart, sassy, and strong Drew, but then as you hear Drew doubt, speculate and try to give reasons to Alcantara's more-than-friendly behavior, you start to doubt too. But the way he carresses her cheek, almost-kisses her, and became furious when she appears in front of him with a new bruise or cut, or that time when Drew almost fell trying to keep pace with him in a rocky terrain and he stops and cares for her feet, could it mean more? You have to take into account that he is a very old vampire who has no qualms whatsoever of eviscerating a human being, so no, still not sure on the whole romance front.
Then there is Ronan. Drew is starting to realise that Ronan and this other Proctor are sharing secret glances and letters, and that doesn't sit well with her. I mean, she thought that Ronan and her had a "thing-thing" (direct quote), but after all these private gestures and such, she's sure it's all just in her head. But Ronan still cares for her, and he stiffens and tenses whenever Alcantara approaches/meets up with Drew. That has to count for something. And it's terribly cute when they're teasing each other and not cold and indifferent.
And then there is that special someone at the end of the book!!!!!! If you think Alcantara or Ronan is sexy, wait till you meet that guy - or more accurately, man - at the end!!!!!! Omg, I think I've just found another fiction hottie to root for!!:D:D Trust me, this guy is so worth your money and time and effort to buy and read the book.
But even with so many love interests, the romance wasn't overly done, even though it was significantly more...I wouldn't say emphasized, just more talked-about. But no worries, it's the type that gives you butterflies in your stomach, not the type that will make you roll your eyes. *ahemtwilightahem* It's the type that makes you feel all warm and smile whenever the guys make a teasing, friendly pass at Drew. I mean, except for Ronan. He's too brooding and proper to do that kind of stuff.
Ok, I've got to stop harping on the romance and move onto other stellar aspects of this book. Stellar cause seriously, there were no flaws that I could spot. That's what you get when you find the perfect book for you. This book is perfect, with a pop at the P.
Don't get me wrong, this book is not all about the chummy and daisies, it's also about the ruthlessness and heartlessness of vampires and humans alike. Because on the Isle of Night, no one is your ally, and everyone is for themselves. You let down your guard for a minute and you're a goner for sure. That's what Drew still has to do - she's got to keep her wits up from being eaten up by the other she-wolves that she's got to compete with. Cause you've got to use whatever means you can to survive, and they fully embrace the Darwinian way of doing things: Survival of the fittest.
As always, it is wonderful to listen to Drew be the narrator of VP. She's strong, she's smart, she's beautiful, she's modest, she's sassy, she's funny, she's loyal, and even with that more-than-tough exterior, it's her innate good heart that's the nicest to listen to. She, Emma and Yasuo becomes closer in VP, and it's heartwarming to see Emma start to stand up for Drew when Drew stood up for Emma and both of them were facing something equivalent to a not-so-pretty death sentence. Ok, it was just a face-off with approximately more than 10 Initiates, Guidons, whatever mean girls there were plus Masha and Trinity heading them. And if you'd remember, Masha's the one with the signature whip as her weapon of choice, able to flay and stuff. But still, it was a rather fatal face-off, and they were there, standing together.
The plot. Was. AMAZING. There was so many things going on in VP, but mainly it was on Drew training for her upcoming mission off the Isle of Night with Master Alcantara. Oh, and of course dodging all the (fatal) run-ins with the two Guidons who hate Drew and Emma, who is Drew's best friend, to their bone marrows, Masha and Trinity. And after that the mission that we've all been waiting for. The mission that led Drew to that hubba-hubba guy I was talking about. The one worth our money. B) Haha, but aside from that, I thought that the mission was a little short, considering how much was put into preparing for it. But it was still very suspenseful, and I was so utterly engrossed within its pages. Everything was so vivid I could feel the walls of the dungeon (yes, there will be a dungeon), see what Drew was seeing, and best of all, feel what she was feeling at that point in time - the nerves, the cold-sweat, the anticipation, and then the, ahem, desire. (Again, it is that aforementioned worth-our-money man that will incite such an emotion within our dear, courageous, strong-willed Drew) I was so focused on the book I didn't realise the time passing until it was dark outside the house!
I loved Wolff's writing style! As I've said, the descriptions were vivid, but that didn't mean it was draggy. On the contrary, it was anything but. I don't know how she does it, but there was humor too, and lots and lots and lots and lots of suspense. Especially when Drew engages in a fight. EPIC.
All in all, VAMPIRE'S KISS is undoubtedly one of the best books I've read so far, better yet than THE HUNGER GAMES and all. I wouldn't go on much further, cause I think I've said my fill, and if up till now you're still not convinced to read VP, then it's probably not for you. But seriously, this book is all kinds of goodness you don't want to miss out on. I'd recommend this to fans of the Hunger Games (cause inherently, they are very similar), and those that like a little romance to go along with their action. Actually, I'd just about recommend this to every-freaking-person who reads fiction novels.
P.S. I just finished the book, and I'm such an emotional wreck now...So much emotions churning in me!! Lol. Ok, calm down, CYP. Calm down.
P.P.S. And just in case you've forgotten, I am practically dying to get my hands on BLOOD FEVER. Dying....dying.... I'd probably be thinking about this one for quite some time..:/