Defiance by Lilith Saintcrow
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Book four in the Strange Angels series
I have loved this series right from the start and this book is a welcome continuation of Dru's story- exciting, nail-biting and action packed. Dru is part vampire and living at the schola for dhamphir and werwulfen boys, training with Christophe and attending class. Dru is svetocha- a rare female part vampire part human, and as such she is treated like a princess at the schola, and accorded a lot of respect and influence. She uses this to command everyone to help in the search for Graves, her missing best friend. I am Team Graves all the way and have always found Christophe a little creepy. Graves is not in this book a lot which is a shame, because he is a very funny and comforting character, who can always be relied upon. His absence makes Dru brooding and miserable, and leaves a hole in the story. There is no comic relief so Dru's emotions are always dark and raw. She also has a confusing time trying to sort out her feelings for both Graves and Christophe. Her status as svetocha also means that she must always be watched and protected, leaving Dru feeling smothered. Dru is the type of person to hate being treated like she is precious and never takes advantage of her power. Dru is such a great heroine- really likeable. She is such a funny mix of spunky tough-girl tom-boyishness and real vulnerability. Her powers are only just starting to develop in this book, and her confidence is also growing with them.
After a slow start the action picks up again and Dru's strength and determination kicks in over her depression and renews her desperation to help Graves. I love the constant shift in narrative between what is happening and Dru's memories of her Grandmother's kooky advice and her Dad's training. Dru never knows who to trust and alliances shift, and she is lied to and betrayed from unexpected quarters. But she also finds an unexpected ally...
Book 5 The Reckoning is due to be published November 2011 and looks like it will be an explosive finale to the series with Dru really coming into her own- bring it on!
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