Thursday, 2 December 2010

Vampre Academy Review

Vampire Academy (Vampire Academy 1)
 – Richelle Mead
Kindle Book
St Vladimir's Academy isn't just any boarding school - hidden away, it's a place where vampires are educated in the ways of magic and half-human teens train to protect them. Rose Hathaway is a Dhampir, a bodyguard for her best friend Lissa, a Moroi Vampire Princess. They've been on the run, but now they're being dragged back to St Vladimir's where the girls must survive a world of forbidden romances, a ruthless social scene and terrifying night time rituals. But most of all, staying alive.
I have to say that I absolutely loved this book! There is romance, school politics, friendships in peril as well as life-threatening situations – everything you would want in a YA book.

The book starts with Rose and Lissa being found and taken back to St Vladimirs – a vampire academy that they ran away from two years previously. The reasons for their escape are drip-fed throughout the story so you don’t know what they were escaping at first. This gradual reveal added mystery to the story for me; however, the characters are the real joy for me. I really felt the history and depth of feeling between Rose and Lissa – despite the squabbles that all teenaged best friends have. The other supporting characters are also great – Dimitri and Christian especially were well developed and given distinctive personalities – they were more than just good-looking boys for the girls to fancy.
This is definitely a YA book with all the school politics that teenagers have and distractions – and for once I didn’t find it annoying. I really felt for Rose and wanted to know how she would escape each situation. I loved the fact that she wasn’t undefeatable – she suffered and lost sometimes but worked hard for her wins.
The vampire world Richelle Mead created is fascinated – two different kinds of vampires Moroi, who can go out in weak sun, wield elemental magic and don’t kill and Strigori who kill when they feed and have lost their elemental magic. I enjoyed this different take on the vampire myth and am looking forward to learning more in future books.
There are a couple of things that I didn’t enjoy – the ‘bad’ guy of the book was obvious to me and not a surprise at all, but this didn’t detract from the story at all and I wanted to know more about his motivations – hopefully this will be explored later as well.
This was a great start to a series – and I hope that the remaining books will develop the world and relationships further.
Recommended for fans of Kelley Armstrong and Ilona Andrews. 8 out of 10.
Kirsty at The Overflowing Library is having a Vampire Academy Fortnight in celebration of the release of the final book in the series, Last Sacrifice – go check it out! J

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