Review: The Golden Lily by Richelle Mead

March 17, 2013
Title: The Golden Lily
Author: Richelle Mead
Published: Razorbill | June, 2012
Genre: Paranormal Romance, YA
Series: Bloodlines
The Golden Lily
The Indigo Spell
The Fiery Heart

Goodreads | Amazon  
Sydney Sage is an Alchemist, one of a group of humans who dabble in magic and serve to bridge the worlds of humans and vampires. They protect vampire secrets—and human lives.

Sydney would love to go to college, but instead, she’s been sent into hiding at a posh boarding school in Palm Springs, California–tasked with protecting Moroi princess Jill Dragomir from assassins who want to throw the Moroi court into civil war. Formerly in disgrace, Sydney is now praised for her loyalty and obedience, and held up as the model of an exemplary Alchemist.

But the closer she grows to Jill, Eddie, and especially Adrian, the more she finds herself questioning her age–old Alchemist beliefs, her idea of family, and the sense of what it means to truly belong. Her world becomes even more complicated when magical experiments show Sydney may hold the key to prevent becoming Strigoi—the fiercest vampires, the ones who don’t die. But it’s her fear of being just that—special, magical, powerful—that scares her more than anything. Equally daunting is her new romance with Brayden, a cute, brainy guy who seems to be her match in every way. Yet, as perfect as he seems, Sydney finds herself being drawn to someone else—someone forbidden to her.

When a shocking secret threatens to tear the vampire world apart, Sydney’s loyalties are suddenly tested more than ever before. She wonders how she's supposed to strike a balance between the principles and dogmas she's been taught, and what her instincts are now telling her.

Should she trust the Alchemists—or her heart?


     The Golden Lily was, frankly, a disappointing read for me. I didn't like Sydney at all in this installment, she might be book smart but she is very naive when it comes to strategic plotting against the enemy. I can't believe how stupid her plan was in the end, though I do commend on her witchy abilities, and I know I shouldn't compare her to Rose, but how can you not after seeing how weak of a heroine Sydney is. I loved Sydney in Bloodlines, she was so feisty but she messed that up when she started dating and talking nerd in Golden Lily which was honestly, the most boring part of the story. She really needs to trust her gut and not blindly follow the head Alchemists. I really feel that change would happen in Indigo Spell and I'm looking forward to that.  

     Golden Lily continues a week or so after the events in Bloodlines. After Lee died in the process of turning into a strigoi the second time proving that the ones restored using spirit can not be changed into strigoi again, Dmitri and Sonya Karp starts experimenting with different techniques to find a way a prevent strigoi turning all-together. That was the whole story of Golden Lily, besides Sydney dating. I was so bored with the storyline, nothing happened at all. There was no action, no fighting, no suspense, no romance and basically, no Richelle Mead magic. The only saving grace of this book was Adrian and Angeline. Angeline is one of my favorite and most entertaining characters, she reminds me of Rose and I love that. She's very flirty, gets in trouble a lot but I like that she is focused towards her Dhampir duties and is not afraid to learn and listen. I really really really like her!

     Adrian was the charmer of the book and I fell in love with him. I always saw him as a spoiled royalty who was never serious enough, but I never realized how much facade he had to put up to pretend that way. I saw the real Adrian when he met his father and boy, it break my heart to see how much he had to suffer. Not only does he have Jill who can see his thoughts through spirit but he is surrounded by degrading people who never believe in him to do anythng. I still don't see him as a hero because he doesn't get to play that role; whenever something goes wrong, Dmitri is always there to save the world and I didn't like that. He got his series, now he should move one and let Adrian shine in his book. As for romance, Sydney is one dumb person; unless you tell her word by word, she won't get any hints. I love the ending but still I'm really mad at her, the only thing she did in Golden Lily was date Brayden and it was pointless.

     Overall, The Golden Lily didn't live up to it's expectation or maybe I had too many of them. It isn't my favorite in the series simply because the things that were discovered at the end could've been known  by the third chapter if Sydney wasn't so stupid or ignorant. I knew what was going to happen in Golden Lily when I finished Bloodlines, there were hints everywhere, and I was really hoping that besides the obvious we'd learn something else. That didn't happen and that is why I would say that The Golden Lily was struck by the curse of the second book. Thought I still recommend the series. Bloodlines is so much better and well written than most of the books out there and if you are a paranormal junkie, then you need to pick up this series.   



  1. I'm done with Vampire Academy and I so want to start Bloodlines but I think I'll wait for a bit. Sydney was okay for me though she came through in Last Sacrifice. I really liked Rose as a protagonist so I don't like it that Sydney is weak. But I am eager to know more about Adrian :) great review Aman! :)

    Janhvi @ The Readdicts

    1. No NO Don't wait. It gets much better in Indigo Spell. There is more romance and more action. Sydney was fan-freaking-tastic! I'd recommend you to read it right after you finish VA.

  2. Oh I'm sorry The Golden Lily didn't work out for you Aman, I hate it when I'm able to guess what's going to happen in a book. But even more when my expectations are really high going into a book and I end up being disappointed. I hope you have some more success with Mead's future books! :)

    1. Yeah, it kills the suspense which downs the enjoyment factor but still, GL is much better than most of the books I read this month. That's something :)

  3. I haven't read this series. I'm sorry it didn't live up to what you expected though. Three stars is still pretty decent in my opinion. I'd read it. Thanks for sharing.

    1. Yes, it pretty decent but it wasn't up to the Richelle Mead level. If you were to read this book randomly, you would love it. I do hope you give it a try.

  4. Great review! I have the first two Bloodlines books sitting on my bookshelf. I should really start them soon. I'm putting it off, because I hate waiting for books to come out so much... so maybe I'll wait until Fiery Heart is released. :P

    1. Don't miss out on this series, I use to hold off reading certain books too, but then I'll forget about them. Read them while you're in the mood. Besides, Indigo Spell is beyond good and the ending is not a huge cliffhanger.


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