Book Review: Vampire Academy

Title/Author:  Vampire Academy by Richelle Mead
(Vampire Academy #1)

Genre:  Young Adult, Fantasy, Paranormal, Romance

Published:  August 16th, 2007 by Razorbill

Paperback, 332 pages

How I Got This Book:  Checked it out from the library

Why I Picked It Up?:  EVERYONE HAS READ THIS and EVERYONE LOVES IT! So I figured, eh! why not?  =)

Book Jacket Blurb:  “St. Vladimir’s Academy isn’t just any boarding school- it’s a hidden 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- the very place where they’re most in danger. . . . Rose and Lissa become enmeshed in forbidden romance, the Academy’s ruthless social scene, and unspeakable nighttime rituals. But they must be careful lest the Strigoi- the world’s fiercest and most dangerous vampires- make Lissa one of them forever.” –(From Goodreads)

My Review of this Work:

I know…I am super late to jump on this Vampire Train!  Like, a few years late to this party!  But I am always up for discovering new series, and hey! I don’t have to anxiously wait for the next one!

So I picked this book up the day before the Bout of Books readathon was going to start because I had it handy.  Little did I know that it would propel me to read the next three books IMMEDIATELY! haha.  I read the first four books in this series in 4 days (I am going to pick up books 5 and 6 as soon as I finish Cloud Atlas).  Needless to say, the story was so addicting that I find myself forgetting what events happen in which book!  So for this review, I will focus on the three elements that FORCED me to continue reading the series.

1.  Fantastic world development.  For those of you who have never read this novel, I would try and explain this world of vampires to you now.  But I can’t.  I tried explaining it to my co-worker and his eyes glazed over at the amount of detail I had to go into for him to get some sort of picture of what I was reading.  So I will spare you my explanation (GO READ IT!) and just tell you that the world development is AWESOME!  After the first 100 pages, I felt like this world was real life!  There is nothing strange about it; I had no looming questions or concerns.  Honestly, it was as clear and natural as any other world I have visited, and I am truly appreciative.  It takes some great craft skills to form a world as cohesive as this one, and Richelle Mead definitely has them!

2.  Great character introduction.  As with any fantasy novel, there are a whole lot of characters to introduce.  Naturally, we get a lot of development about our main gal (and narrator), Rose Hathaway.  She is a bold rebel who has one goal:  to protect her best friend, Lissa.  Her character is strong and snarky, fearless even (and her snarky attitude gets her in trouble frequently).  She is a character that half the time you want to applaud and half the time you want to kick.  But she never sways from what she believes in, which is admirable, and that makes me really like her.

She’s not the only character in this series, though.  You have Lissa, the best friend, who I find to be a little more self-absorbed. But that’s kind of the way she was raised, so in some ways you cannot blame her.  But that characteristic makes her come off as annoying at times.  Christian is one of those mysterious peer – types with a dark and eerie past.  I really appreciate how much time Mead devotes to developing his backstory because I find Christian to be one of the most interesting characters of the series.  And then there is Dimitri….dark and mysterious, the older man.  Really strong, really sexy.  And he is not a jerk! (well, not a real jerk.  He has a little attitude himself. But I like a sarcastic man.)

3.  The sexual tension between Rose and Dimitri is intoxicating!  Seriously.  I definitely love tension in a relationship, and this relationship has it times one thousand!  But not only do they have that irresistible sexual tension, their relationship also develops a deep friendship based upon trust and respect.  While their relationship blossoms over a short time frame (something like a month or something), it surprisingly did not feel like insta-love at all!  I felt that, though quick, this is real.

Overall, I found this book to be a great beginning to what I believe will turn out to be a fantastic paranormal series!  Richelle Mead introduces her world in such a way that excites the reader rather than bogs him/her down in detail.  I can only see the excitement, action, and development going up from here!

My Bookshelf Rating:

A Middle Shelf Book!

Now this is what I call a great (though complicated) vampire story!  The lore in this world that Richelle Mead creates is rich and full, which I appreciate!  I found this to be a great introduction novel into what I believe to be a great series!  Mead gives you enough world building to get you wrapped up in the story without bogging you down in detail.  A fast-paced novel with great characters and spicy sexual tension…I’ll take that!

Love and Cocoa Puffs,
Jennifer

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5 thoughts on “Book Review: Vampire Academy

  1. Kate @ Ex Libris says:

    I just read his series a few months ago, so you're not the only one who is late to the party 🙂 I thought they were good, but I had a hard time relating to Rose. The Bloodlines series was much more enjoyable for me because I love Sydney.

  2. Sandy says:

    I'm so glad you enjoyed it! Rose is one of my favorite leads female characters in a while. And I LOVE Dimitri! I can't wait to see your reviews on the other books as well! Hehe!Sandy @ Somewhere Only We Know

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