Blood Feast was everything the series has been building towards as far as Lio and Cassia’s relationship is concerned.

Finally getting to experience the most sacred part of Hesperine culture firsthand was everything I had been waiting for and made my heart so happy. I love getting to learn more about the Hesperine’s and with Cassia becoming fully immersed in their society it was an opportunity to learn alongside her as she navigated what it meant to be fully Hesperine herself. And considering how long anticipated it has been for Cassia to become one with Lio in every way, the satisfaction of this was so extreme.

Of course, things couldn’t remain completely perfect and happy as Lio and Cassia learned to navigate their eternities together, or we wouldn’t have the kind of story that keeps readers coming back for more. The anxiety and tension of strife does return to haunt the couple, but the story is all the more interesting for it and had me once again racing through the pages to find out what would happen for this couple, Hesperines, and Tenebra alike. As always, the political intrigue and the battle to save their people makes this book unputdownable and I was hooked from beginning to end. I cannot get enough of this world and the characters, and having Cassia deal with the struggle of becoming fully Hesperine on top of her fight to keep her people safe just adds to the tension as she tries to figure out who she is now.

The characters are always such a highlight in this series. Whether it’s Lio and Cassia themselves, impossible not to love and respect, or the side characters, who manage to steal your heart no matter how infrequently they might be on the page, I am smitten with so many of them. I was so happy to get more of Mak and Lyros being a bigger part of the story as they are such a lovable duo. Even smaller glimpses of other characters such as Solia, Tendo, and Rhudira had me happy to get a chance to spend some time with others I love dearly. Though, of course, I can’t help but wish to see more of them and get a bigger chunk of their stories as well. But that is something this series does so well. It leaves you wanting to know greater details of so many other characters than just the main ones because their backstories are so enthralling and the depth of their characters is so incredible even when they aren’t central to every book.

As always with this series there were also moments that absolutely tugged at my heartstrings. This series has the ultimate ability to make me feel all of the things for the characters and everything they are going through, both heartwarming and heartbreaking. It is impossible not to feel every emotion for them and this is something that has truly made me love this series so completely. They are beautiful moments that had me teary for the characters that they finally made it to such important moments, and circumstances that affected them so deeply and negatively that had me wishing they would get through it and everything would be perfect on the other side. I can’t handle how intensely I feel for these characters sometimes, both main and side, and it’s truly a testament to Vela Roth’s writing that I am without fail so deeply affected every time. 

Lio doing what he does for Dame had me so teary and at the same time so excited about the possibilities. This was everything I didn’t know this book needed and warmed my heart and kept me on edge as far as her safety. But suffice it to say I loved Dame so much. 

Now, Lio and Cassia. With as many books as there have been in this story, and as much as the two have managed to grow as characters, it seems like they might have done all of the growing that they have to do already. And yet they still manage to surprise me and their character arcs are so masterfully written. Cassia is forced to deal with her own inner demons brought on by fear of her own self this time. With all of the awful examples she has of people in power and seeking ultimate power in her life, she is crippled by her fear of abusing her own power as she navigates her her freshly discovered magical lineage. This also serves to set Lio’s frustration off but it just makes the two of them so real and relatable which is what I love so deeply about this book, and this series in general. Lio on the other hand goes through his darkest period so far and it’s devastating to watch, even more difficult because it is so contradictory to who Lio is as a Hesperine, being the light and positivity. It’s the first time he really questions everything he believes in and the darkness in him broke my heart every moment, while somehow making him so much more real, and quite frankly it was a reminder that not even Hesperine’s are perfect, as much as they across as being in these books, and I think that’s a powerful, important lesson in Blood Feast. 

Honestly what doesn’t Blood Feast have? Moments with all the feels, incredible characters, the kind of storyline that is impossible to stop reading, and even epic battles. And the anxiety these battles caused me over the fates of these beloved characters was crazy. I blasted through the last part of the book because it was so action packed I couldn’t stop and I needed to know what would happen to all these characters I love so much. This series continues to knock it out of the park and I adored every page of this book and could not get enough. Now to wait for the next book with everything left up in the air. This is definitely a must read!


By Danielle Plant

An avid reader and runner. I like to spend my spare time with my dogs Reese and Orion.

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