by First Mate Keira
Title: Vampire Academy (Vampire Academy Series, Book 1)
Author: Richelle Mead
Page Count: 332
Grade Reading Level: Grade 9+
Summary: After two years on the run, Rose Hathaway and Vasilisa (Lissa) Dragomir are captured by a group of Guardians and sent back to St. Vladimir’s Academy. Lissa is a Moroi, or a good vampire, and the last of her royal line, making her a princess. Rose is a mix of human and vampire, known as a dhampir. Dhampirs grow up to be Guardians, who are the protectors of Moroi. From the beginning dhampirs are taught “They come first” and that they need Moroi to reproduce. Best friends, Rose and Lissa share a bond, something that they learn more about back at school. There was a reason they left St. Vladimir’s in the first place… and now that they’re back again they have to navigate the social hierarchy, catch up on two years worth of classes, fall in love with two inappropriate boys, and solve the mystery that sent them fleeing in the first place.
Why I started this book:
I kept seeing the book series in stores, around the blogosphere, and in the library. It was recommended to me as a good series for Twilight fans. I finally picked it up when I heard it might be made into a movie sometime in the future.
- The friendship between Lissa and Rose. They seem to really care for each other and want what’s best. They get into fights, they keep secrets from one another, but they’re very tight and supportive too. They don’t compete with each other.
- Mead captures the spirit of a teenage girl and infuses it into her heroine, Rose. She becomes a perfect pot of contradiction with heavy sarcasm, flirting, insecurity, and confidence.
- I like that the half-vampires and good vampires are alive and that the blood drinking is limited to Moroi and Strigoi (undead/bad vampires).
- Mead creates a solid story based on real folklore, like the Balklan myth of Dhampirs, and imagination. I really like the integration and world-building. It’s pretty complex.
- The underage romance between Dimitri and Rose. She’s a year shy of being legally an adult and it might not make much of a difference to some people, but it rubs me the wrong way and sends a bad message.
- All the dead animals being planted on and in Lissa’s things by some weirdo. No wonder Lissa and Rose ran before – wouldn’t you to get away from this sort of creepy stalker displays? Yuck.
- Yet again, all the cool kids and everybody else seems to be drinking and/or smoking or have done it in the past. Doesn’t the word underage count for anything? Where are the teachers on all of this? Sheesh. There needs to be several room raids since lockers aren’t in use.
- There’s a lot of telling instead of showing in the novel, which can make it hard to read and occasionally a little lackluster, but the plotline and characters have me hooked.
Rating: 3 Treasure Chests
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