Tuesday, 2 July 2013

Review: A Castle of Sand by Bella Forrest

Title: A Castle of Sand (A Shade of Vampire #3)
Author: Bella Forrest
Release date: June 26th 2013
Publisher: Self-published
Genre: Young Adult Paranormal
Format: eARC
Pages: 339
Source: Author

What Sofia has with Derek feels like a sandcastle; temporary and something that the waves of life and time will soon ruin...

Since the return of Gregor Novak, the island has turned several shades darker. His hatred toward Sofia and thirst for fresh blood lead to a brutal war igniting between father and son.

Meanwhile, the hunters are gaining formidable strength and resources by the day; they know that the safety of The Shade hangs entirely on its ability to remain hidden from them.

And a sinister secret lies in wait for Sofia within the bowls of an Egyptian desert ... a secret that threatens to crush her sandcastle much sooner than she could have expected.

A Castle of Sand is so incredible! I think it's my favourite book of the series so far, for a number of reasons. There's just so much in it, and so many changes. Sofia and Derek's relationship is put to the test, and it's uncertain whether they can get past it. Sofia's mother and father are both back in her life, and that changes a lot too, since they're nothing like she expected. This book, guys... I want to re-read it already! It was that good.

I want to start with Derek because he shined so much in this book. He totally redeemed himself for whatever he did in A Shade of Blood, and I honestly fell for him even more in this. He becomes a lot more... human, I guess. He's empathetic, and he really tries so hard to be worthy of Sofia. The things he endures for her! Everything he does, he does for Sofia. And I think it's incredible how much he loves her. There's this one scene that almost got me yelling at him for being so damn selfless, but at the same time I almost teared up because it was so sweet. And he really is sweet in this book. Yeah, it might be hard to imagine, so you'll get what I'm talking about when you read it. And he's even so totally honourable, too! I really did not expect it of Derek, but he's a complete gentleman. It was kind of funny in places, but I loved how resolute he was. You guys really have to read this series, if just for Derek.

Sofia is as noble as ever, and she strives to gain more rights for the humans in the Shade. She's stubborn, persuasive, and she really gets things done. I was pretty surprised at her amazing leadership skills! On top of everything happening at the Shade, Sofia has to deal with the fact that Ben left to become a Hunter, and Vivienne is gone because of her. Because Vivienne wanted Sofia to save the Shade, and save Derek. Sofia also finds out some life-changing secrets about both her parents, and it tears her apart. I can't even imagine what it must be like for her. But she perseveres, because she has to. She retains her impeccable sense of right and wrong, and this is both a benefit and a flaw. Sofia also finds out a humongous revelation about herself, something that I think will shape the next book in the series. It comes right at the end, so I'm obviously very frustrated with the cliffhanger!

I loved that there was a dual POV from Derek and Sofia, as well as a few POVs from Ben and even Lucas and Claudia. It really gave me an insight into all of their minds, and what they're really thinking. It helped me understand them. Well, except for Lucas. I don't think I'll ever understand him, or even want to. But I did find myself feeling for Claudia, of all people. Claudia! I never thought that would happen. And Ben.. I missed him in this book. He's there, but not as much. But I'm glad that he does accept Sofia and Derek's relationship. He realizes that they're meant to be together. I really want Ben to have a happy ending too, though. He deserves it.

There is so much action and suspense and shockers in this book, all of them left me reeling. And that ending! Such a huge cliffhanger. I'm honestly dying for the next book. Thank goodness Bella writes ninja fast and I'll hopefully get to read it within the next few months! This is one of my favourite vampire series ever, and I can't wait to see what happens next in Derek and Sofia's story.

*Thank you to Bella Forrest for providing me with an ARC for review*

Rating: 5/5

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