This review will contain spoilers for both the Vampire academy series as well as all prior books in the Bloodlines series. Reviews for these can be found here.
Silver Shadows was published in 2014, and is the fifth book in Richelle Mead’s Bloodlines series. Silver Shadows follows the aftermath of Sydney getting taken away to re-education, a few months into her being there. The official synopsis:
In The Fiery Heart, Sydney risked everything to follow her gut, walking a dangerous line to keep her feelings hidden from the Alchemists.
Now in the aftermath of an event that ripped their world apart, Sydney and Adrian struggle to pick up the pieces and find their way back to each other. But first, they have to survive.
For Sydney, trapped and surrounded by adversaries, life becomes a daily struggle to hold on to her identity and the memories of those she loves. Meanwhile, Adrian clings to hope in the face of those who tell him Sydney is a lost cause, but the battle proves daunting as old demons and new temptations begin to seize hold of him. . . .
Their worst fears now a chilling reality, Sydney and Adrian face their darkest hour in this heart-pounding fifth installment in the New York Times bestselling Bloodlines series, where all bets are off.
Silver Shadows is heart-wrenching to read, it forces you to accept all the situations Sydney and Adrian fought so hard to keep at bay. They both feel powerless and it’s horrible to read, when you’ve grown to love them gaining strength from one another.
Silver Shadows, like The Fiery Heart, has both Sydney and Adrian’s POV, this means that you get to experience Sydney’s experiences in re-education, as well as the effect her being gone has on everyone else. It’s sad to see all the people Sydney had an impact on in Palm Springs, and how many of them are not sure how to act without here there.
A large part of the book focusses on going into depth with the workings of the alchemists, Sydney discovers many things while in re-education that before now was unknown. Sydney also cements her distaste and resistance to the alchemists to the reader, while she is in reeducation – this is done by her continuing to act against her orders, as well as her general thought process.
Sydney’s development is clearly visible when she’s put into a situation where she previously would have acted brainwashed, but instead she keeps her own thoughts and opinions. That as a reader is great to read about, because we get insight into how much she has changed as a person, since her introduction in Blood Promise.
Silver Shadows is a great book, and is in my top 3 of my favourite books in the Bloodlines series. It manages to show us how far Sydney has moved and developed, while still focussing on just how much she actually mattered to the rest of the Palm Springs gang.