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Review of The Indigo Spell

Razorbill, February 2013
The Indigo Spell
Richelle Mead
Bloodlines #3

available now

In the aftermath of a forbidden moment that rocked Sydney to her core, she finds herself struggling to draw the line between her Alchemist teachings and what her heart is urging her to do. Then she meets alluring, rebellious Marcus Finch--a former Alchemist who escaped against all odds, and is now on the run. Marcus wants to teach Sydney the secrets he claims the Alchemists are hiding from her. But as he pushes her to rebel against the people who raised her, Sydney finds that breaking free is harder than she thought. There is an old and mysterious magic rooted deeply within her. And as she searches for an evil magic user targeting powerful young witches, she realizes that her only hope is to embrace her magical blood--or else she might be next.

If you haven't read this book yet, you need to run out right now and buy it. Okay, sure, maybe you can wait around long enough to finish reading this review. But not a minute longer!

The Indigo Spell is a real game-changer. Everything ratchets up a notch or two: Sydney's independence from the Alchemists and movement towards magic, the threat against Jill and our happy little group, and -- you better believe it -- the relationship between Sydney and Adrian. In no way has this series been uneventful, but by the end of Indigo Spell, the situation in Palm Springs reaches a sort of point of no return, especially for Sydney.

There are few protagonists I enjoy as much as Sydney Sage. For one, I love the brilliant, ultra-competent types of heroines that blaze a trail of efficiency through chaos; they give nerdy women a good name, and that's wonderful. But Sydney  specifically, is intriguing. Her character's progression from Blood Promise to the current book shows a remarkable degree of development, the kind that frankly isn't seen all that often. Her gradual shifts in worldview lend a fair amount of realism. And the thoroughness with which Mead has conceptualized her character makes it so much easier to identify and sympathize with her.

So we have an exceptional protagonist. And then Mead further demonstrates her brilliance by pairing Sydney up with Adrian Ivashkov. We loved him in Vampire Academy, but we adore him in Bloodlines, am I right? Just as Sydney has expanded beyond her own boundaries, Adrian has become more than he was within the first series. Yes, he's always been profound with hints of heroism, but he's also been largely distant. Indigo Spell finally brings him to the forefront where he so rightly belongs.  And fans will be very, very happy with where things go for him and Sydney in this book.

Next up will be The Fiery Heart, slated to come out November 19. It will be a torturous wait, but I'm sure it will be worth it.

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