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Sunday, October 25, 2009

Book Review: Van Alen Legacy (Blue Bloods, Book 4) by Melissa de la Cruz


Reading level: Ages 9-12
Hardcover: 384 pages
Publisher: Hyperion Book CH (October 6, 2009)
Language: English
Purchase: Amazon, Borders, Barnes & Noble, Books-a-Million

With the stunning revelation surrounding Bliss's true identity comes the growing threat of the sinister Silver Bloods. Once left to live the glamorous life in New York City, the Blue Bloods now find themselves in an epic battle for survival. Not to worry, love is still in the air for the young vampires of the Upper East Side. Or is it? Jack and Schuyler are over. Oliver's brokenhearted. And only the cunning Mimi seems to be happily engaged. Young, fanged, and fabulous, Melissa de la Cruz's vampires unite in this highly anticipated fourth installment of the Blue Bloods series.

The third book in the Blue Bloods series, Revelations, left us reeling from all the delicious plot twists and turns. Startling secrets were revealed about Bliss, an earth shattering battle in Rio de Janeiro reared its gruesome head, and Schuyler painfully struggled between duty, passion, love and freedom. The Van Alen legacy picks up a year after Revelations has ended and unfolds through the alternating view points of Schuyler, Bliss and Mimi. It is assumed that the reader is acquainted with books 1-3, so if you haven't yet read them yet, I strongly urge you to not try and jump in with The Van Alen legacy.

At the onset of novel, we learn that the Conclave didn't accept Schuyler's version of what happened in Rio and she and Ollie have been on the run throughout Europe ever since. Exhausted and overwhelmed, they attempt to seek haven in the European Conclave, something I can assure you, that doesn't go nearly according to plan. Meanwhile, Mimi is tracking down Silver Bloods with Kingsley Martin in Brazil, and Bliss is in the fight of her life - that is, with herself.

It's hard to review a novel like The Van Alen Legacy without giving away spoilers for those who haven't read it yet. I will say that the novel marked a turning point for me in the series. In my opinion, it was also the best to date. From page one I was immediately swept away into the complex, dynamic world Melissa de la Cruz has created. The nerve wracking plot and vibrant characters had me anxiously flipping the pages into the very late hours of the night as well!

Something which really surprised me about The Van Alen Legacy was that Mimi's character development and storyline were the elements of this novel I enjoyed the most! (Something that has NEVER happened before). I really appreciated the changes starting to evolve within her character. I know they were only tiny glimmers here and there of a softer side, but based on the way she has always conducted herself in previous novels, these moments seemed magnified to me and were actually quite a welcome change! I hope she continues to grow and evolve in upcoming novels too. As for Jack, I was hoping we'd get into his head a little bit more, but when I really reflect back on the book, I think that could have ruined some of the plot surprises if it had actually transpired. De la Cruz also gave us hints about the direction of her future spinoff series, Wolf Pact, which I am equally anxious to read.

Van Alen Legacy was a non-stop roller coaster ride of action and fun. Friendships were tested, ties were broken and romantic dilemmas were resolved. I am dying for the next installment, Misguided Angel.

Melissa de la Cruz is the New York Times and USA Today best-selling author of many critically acclaimed and award-winning novels for teens including The Au Pairs series, the Blue Bloods series, the Ashleys series, the Angels on Sunset Boulevard series and the semi-autobiographical novel Fresh off the Boat.

Her books for adults include the novel Cat’s Meow, the anthology Girls Who Like Boys Who Like Boys and the tongue-in-chic handbooks How to Become Famous in Two Weeks or Less and The Fashionista Files: Adventures in Four-inch heels and Faux-Pas.


Dena Brown said...

This sounds like a great series, just my cup of tea! I will check it out.

Sarah (Limerick) said...

Wow, this was ends up making us turn for Mimi's favor? That's interesting; I'm so use to hating her for the past three books. XD
The Van Alen Legacy looks and sounds amazing! I can't wait to read it.
Thanks for the review! :)

Jenn said...

I agree, I can't imagine liking Mimi. Definitely not.
Hm, I was havng mixed feelings about this one, but after reading your review, I might have to try it sometime, thanks! :)