Title: Gates of Paradise by Melissa de la Cruz
Published: January 15th, 2013 by Disney Hyperion
Format: Hard cover
Group age: Young adult
Genre: Paranormal – Angels, vampires and demons
Challenge(s): Finish the series
Grade Rate: B
Schuyler Van Alen is running out of time. The Dark Prince of Hell is storming the Gates of Paradise, intent on winning the heavenly throne for good. This time he has his greatest angels by his side, Abbadon and Azrael—Jack and Mimi Force, as they are known in the Coven.Or so he thinks. Even as Lucifer assigns Jack and Mimi the tasks of killing their true loves, the Force twins secretly vow to defeat the Dark Prince once and for all. But how far will Mimi and Jack go to conceal their real loyalties?Meanwhile, former vampire Bliss Llewellyn has joined forces with Lawson, the greatest wolf of the underworld, to free his people from their imprisonment in Hell. As they struggle against impossible odds, an ancient message, woven into the very fabric of time, reveals just how much depends on the success of their mission.Lucifer seeks the key to the Gate of Promise, and when Schuyler is taken captive and delivered straight to Hell, she must make an unthinkable choice—the same one the archangel Michael was forced to make during the Crisis in Rome. Will Schuyler find the strength to do what he could not?The epic, heartbreaking Blue Bloods series comes to a close with this final novel about staggering courage, unbearable sacrifice, and the immortality of true love.
After investing a lot of time on the Blue Blood series (this is book 7!) I’m happy for the ending that Ms. de la Cruz gifted us. Gate of Paradise answers all your questions and then some.
The story starts a few months after the ending of Lost in Time (my review here). Schuyler, Oliver and Kingsley are in London and they are guarding the gate and getting ready for the battle to come. Schuyler and Jack, which have been some of my favorite characters in the series, are not together for most of the book, but I still enjoyed their story, especially Schuyler’s which is full of discoveries.
I never warmed up to Mimi, even though she is one of the most interesting, conflicting and strongest characters. On the other hand I love Kingsley, he is adorable, honorable, and loyal to the end. Oliver got what he deserved and so did a lot of other characters.
I have to say that I did like the ending, but the execution was a bit rough. For starters, the story of the wolves and Bliss, which is told in the companion book Wolf Pact (and that I haven’t read) confused me a lot. Not enough background information was given and in my opinion, it should have stayed in the companion book, even if they made an appearance at the end, instead of making Bliss the narrator of some chapters. Also, the story is told from numerous points of view (in the third person), and from different times and settings. I’m sorry to say that this turned out to be very confusing to me as well.
Don’t get me wrong, the ending was good and it made me cry. BUT it was kind of abrupt and all ends were tied very neatly… Maybe too neatly? Overall, I’m happy with the series and also with the ending. I’m eager to start Ms. de la Cruz’s new series, which starts with Frozen, and the new Blue Blood spin off (Vampires of Manhattan?)
A few quotes for you:
“Because love was not the answer to every question. Because real love meant sacrifice. Sometimes love means letting go.”
“I know you. I know this isn't you. And even if it is, I still love you. As much as I always have. You will always be mine. I will always love you, I promised you that when you left, and it's true now.”
“Evil was seductive and easy, and virtue was difficult and unappreciated.”
About the cover: Gorgeous, right? I have to say that the covers for the whole series are beautiful.