After the shocking ending of Zodiac Academy 3: The Reckoning, Tory Vega, Darcy Vega, Darius Acrux and Lance Orion are dealing with their new reality. Lionel Acrux has found a way to become even more powerful, threatening all of Solaria in the process. Despite Tory and Darcy’s reservations, they need Darius to keep their secrets and help them control their new power.
At the same time, Tory and Darcy thought they were done with the drama from the Celestial Heirs, but new pressure and heightened tension make the guys resort to their old ways. To make things worse, Darcy is keeping her relationship with Orion, a secret, which threatens her relationship with Tory.
Nothing seems to be going right for the Vega twins. They can’t seem to trust anyone anymore, not even each other. All they want is to live a normal and comfortable life, but that’s not the way of the Fae. As secrets come to life about their life and their parent’s past, the Vegas become more enthralled in Solaria politics and their possible fate. Unfortunately, actions have consequences and Tory and Darcy are about to be put into some unwinnable situations.
Wow, this book was intense and difficult to put down. We’ll start out by saying we didn’t like Zodiac Academy 4: Shadow Princess as much as the previous two books. We found the drama between Tory and Darcy to be unnecessary and we became tired of the Heirs pulling the same crap, while trying to be redeemable.
However, we did still really like the book. We just wanted to get the frustrating aspects out of the way so we could gush about the parts we did like. First of all, we finally know the girl’s orders! It was so exciting finding out what they can do and what it means for their power.
Another exciting aspect was that this book took place over a longer period of time, allowing us to see how Fae celebrate Halloween and Christmas. The Christmas chapters especially hooked us because we’re introduced to new locations and a fun side of the Heirs.
Now, the characters are what really makes this series. We’re introduced to Gabriel Nox, a friend of Orion and a new professor at Zodiac Academy. We found him to be funny, charming and a good resource for the Vegas…even if Darius hates him.
While we still love Tory and Darcy, we got annoyed at some of their decisions through the book, which made no sense to us. But they still had the fire and fierceness we’ve grown accustomed too. The funniest chapters for them were when Orion made them each join an extracurricular activity.
As for the guys, we still love Darius and Caleb…and Orion most of the time. While we wish Darius would have “Faed up” faster, we enjoy getting his backstory and seeing his personal growth. Caleb is the comedic relief we all need and he never fails to make us laugh. As for Orion, we learned a lot more about him and appreciate what he had to go through. Max is starting to grow on us, especially with his “will they won’t they” relationship with Geraldine Grus, who is a true superstar. However, Seth keeps getting worse and worse. Give Darcy a break, dude!
With all of the character development came some interesting stakes. Shadow Princess really felt like a transition book to us. The first three books highlighted the world building and the intro to to magic. Book 4 felt like it really introduced the power struggles and the impending political divide we expect to continue in book 5. But who knows, this is just our prediction based on the ending we just read. BTW, we’re speechless…
Overall, we love this series and we’ll be reading Zodiac Academy 5: Cursed Fates soon. Do yourself a favor and start reading this YA fantasy series now.