Mar 12, 2012

Book Review: Balthazar by Claudia Gray

Balthazar by Claudia Gray
(Evernight Spin-off)
Release Date: March 6, 2012
Publisher: Harper Teen; 374 pages

Haunted by memories from his first days as a vampire, Balthazar has spent hundreds of years alone—without allies, without love. When he emerges from his isolation to help Skye Tierney, a human girl who once attended Evernight Academy, Balthazar has no idea how dangerous it will be. Skye’s psychic powers have caught the attention of Redgrave, the cruel master vampire responsible for murdering Balthazar and his family four centuries ago. Having learned of Skye’s powers and the remarkable effect her blood has on vampires, he plans to use her for his own evil purposes. As they stand together to fight the evil vampire, Balthazar realizes his lonely world could finally be changed by Skye...just as Redgrave realizes that he can destroy Balthazar once and for all by taking her for his own.

In a story filled with forbidden love and dark suspense, one of the most beloved characters in Claudia Gray’s New York Times bestselling Evernight series will captivate readers with his battle to overcome his past and follow his heart.

If you have NOT read the Evernight series or have NOT finished that series please read with caution. There is some spoilers that were unavoidable. Proceed with caution . . .

I read the Evernight series and I enjoyed it. Not one of my favorite series but enjoyable nonetheless. What definitely kept my attention through the four book series was this amazingly delicious vampire, Balthazar More. So, when I found out Claudia Gray was giving him his own book, you can imagine my excitement. I believe I squealed...a little bit. I couldn't wait to get my hands on this and learn more about this mysteriously addicting vampire.

This book did not disappoint for this Balthazar fan. It was everything I wanted and probably more. I was nervous about the other character, his love interest. Skye Tierney. I didn't care for her in the Evernight series and it was probably unfair of me to judge her, since she wasn't in much of them until Afterlife. So I was dreading this book but I must say this first and foremost. After I finished this book, I came out loving Skye. Maybe even more than Bianca. I always thought she was going after Lucas so I don't know, it turned me off. But boy was I wrong.

Another character whose changed my opinion of them? Charity. I went from absolutely hating her and wishing she'd die, even though she was Balthazar sister to being confused on how I feel. She did have the absolute best quote in the entire book. One that I did not expect and one that had me laughing for a good while. I won't tell you what it is so you'll hopefully have the reaction I did. Wouldn't want to ruin your fun!!! But you see a lot of Charity throughout this book, whether it's in present time or in memories from either when they were human or some of their earlier vampire memories.

Balthazar is just as dreamy, charming and sexy as he was in the Evernight series, except this time he's in New York to protect Skye after she found her new abilities. Ever since Bianca possessed her body in Afterlife she's been able to see visions of people's death's. If she goes somewhere where a person has died, she see's it like she is there. Like she is that person, she feels their pain. This new ability of hers also makes her blood something like a drug for vampires. When they taste her blood, they're taken back to a time when they were human. Every vampire wants to feel like they're alive and her blood is the best way for them to do. The vampire who killed Balthazar is after her but not to kill her, just to use her blood for power. This stirs lots of emotions for Balthazar who wants nothing more than to kill Redgrave.

To top things off, because if that's not enough for Balthazar he's also trying to fight off feelings he has for Skye. He has a strict 'no humans' rule because the one person he's truly loved was killed because of him and he refuses to let that happen to someone else. But how much will power does Balthazar have? Is it enough to stay away from Skye when it's his job to protect her?

If you've read the Evernight series, even if you are not a fan of Balthazar, like I am, I still recommend checking this out. You'll get glimpses of Bianca and Lucas throughout. If you haven't read the Evernight series, well...I can't say I'd recommend reading this. Read Evernight first and if you enjoyed those books, definitely pick up Balthazar.

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