Vampire Blood #4
Release Date: January 29, 2018
Genre: Adult, Paranormal Romance, Historical Romance, Fairytale
Source: I received an eARC from Entangled Publising via Netgalley. This did not affect my rating and my review is provided voluntarily.
Rating: 5 Bookworms
Challenges: #2018NewRelease, #COYER, #TravelingtotheTerminus
When she wakes, everything will change...
When Princess Vilhelmina Dragomire is awakened from her hellish sleep with a blood kiss from a handsome stranger, she learns that much has changed while she's been away. The armies of the Black Lily and the vampire Crown have amassed and are on the brink of war.
No romantic entanglements, no family. Mikhail Romanov, Captain of the Bloodguard, took a vow when he joined the Bloodguard. But he never planned for the gut-punching attraction he would feel for the untouchable princess. He must keep his focus, though. In order to avenge his family, it's essential he help Mina claim her crown and keep his damn hands off of her.
But Mina sets her heart on the elusive captain, and keeping his focus on the great battle ahead becomes harder and harder. While they're making plans, the evil King Dominik has been making some of his own. This time, he will show no mercy to the Princess...
With The Emerald Lily, JCross completes an engrossing series using her own spin on four fairytales, tying them all together with an overarching plot that is both compelling and relevant despite the historical setting. And she does so with aplomb! The Emerald Lily has nail-biting suspense, gut-wrenching emotion, raw and gritty action scenes, and sigh-inducing romance. It was a spectacular ending to the series!
- ALL the Characters
The entire cast is present here as they gear up for the war that's been brewing - that they've orchestrated. The Emerald Lily, of course, focuses on Mina and Mikhail, but all the couples as well as secondary characters get a lot of page time and I was grateful for it as they each provide necessities for the story such as the comic relief Grant offers and the smiles little Izzy evokes. And while I'd already been introduced to Mina and Mikhail, The Emerald Lily proved they both were more than they appeared. I appreciated the character growth as we learned more about them - and they learned more about themselves and each other.
- Twists, Suspense, and Surprises
The Emerald Lily is fairly fast-paced and kept me flipping pages as quickly as I could. JCross managed to throw in a few twists that had me gasping and more than a few shocking incidents that had me shouting out loud as well as tearing up in my disbelief. Revelations about certain characters and events only added to the tension as I powered on eager to see how it would affect current situations and the overall outcome.
The Emerald Lily was a roller coaster rider, wringing so much emotion from me. There was never a dull moment and I felt fear, excitement, sadness, joy, hate, and love...my emotions ran the gamut.
- Visceral Action
JCross didn't shy away from violence. These people were at war against an evil monarchy who would stop at nothing to achieve their goals. Therefore, they met the violence head on. JCross left no doubt as to whether there were limits to the violence the monarchy would inflict and it was appalling to witness. The rebellion suffered greatly but never lost focus. The action added depth to the story overall as well as keeping the tension and excitement levels high.
One of the best things about The Emerald Lily was how well JCross balanced all the elements. There was just enough action, just enough suspense, the right amount of character development, and the perfect amount of romance to create a superb story!
I don't think I could have asked for a more thrilling and satisfying ending. JCross has made a fan of me and I look forward to reading more from her.
Two items of note:
1) I'm not sure if I'm only familiar with Disney's versions of fairytales and there are more to the original versions, if JCross used other myths/stories for inspiration, or if the "extras" are all her imagination but I admire all the parts of these stories.
2) For those of you who are die-hard historical readers, some of the language used in this series might not be historically accurate, but don't let that deter you from enjoying this series!