Synopsis: Guardian Rose Hathaway's life will never be the same. The recent attack on St. Vladimir's Academy devastated the entire Moroi world. Many are dead. And for the few victims carried off by Strigoi, their fates are even worse.
But only one victim matters...Dimitri Belikov. Rose must now choose one of two very different paths: honoring her life's vow to protect Lissa - her best friend and the last surviving Dragomir princess - or dropping out of the Academy to strike out on her own and hunt down the man she loves. She'll have to go to the ends of the earth to find Dimitri and keep the promise he begged her to make. But the question is, when the time comes, will he want to be saved?
Date Published: August 25, 2009
Published By: Razorbill
Number of Pages: 503
WARNING: THIS REVIEW CONTAINS SPOILERS!
Making Dimitri a Strigoi was the best decision Richelle Mead has made so far in the Vampire Academy series. Blood Promise was full of danger and intrigue, twists and turns, and romantic conflict that was actually interesting.
Rose has to travel to Russia to track down Dimitri so she can kill him and save his soul. She meets a lot of interesting characters along the way, including Sydney, the Alchemist who stars in the Bloodlines spin-off series. I'm glad Sydney has her own series because I definitely want to know more about her and the mysterious Alchemists. She doesn't stick around for very long but it was nice to see her and Rose form a tentative friendship - very tentative, seeing as Sydney believes all vampires (Moroi, Strigoi, and half-vampiric dhampirs) are evil, soulless creatures of the night.
The first half of the book was interesting enough, with Rose meeting Dimitri's family and having to tell them what happened to Dimitri. But the book didn't really get going until Rose finally runs into Dimitri and he kidnaps her and holds her captive in some sort of Strigoi manor. I liked how the rules of being a Strigoi applied to Dimitri. For a moment, I was worried that he would realize how much he loved Rose and he would miraculously be cured by the Power of Love, like in a Disney movie.
That doesn't happen (thank God.) Dimitri has turned into a completely evil bastard, who loves killing people and his thirst for power is just as strong as his thirst for blood. He still wants Rose but is no longer able to feel love. He wants to turn her into a Strigoi so they can rule together for eternity. This makes Dimitri a far more interesting character than he was before and Rose struggles between wanting to save him and wanting to be with him. There are moments when she can still see the man she loves lurking beneath the monster Dimitri has become and it leads her to make some stupid decisions.
Thankfully, she snaps out of it and kills him (or at least thinks she does.) In the end, it is revealed that Dimitri is still alive (of course) but now Rose has a shred of hope that she can actually restore him to his former self. This, I'm guessing, sets up the main plot of the final two books in the series and I really can't wait to see what happens next.
Blood Promise is the best book in the Vampire Academy series so far. Here's hoping the next two books are just as good (if not better!)