Series: Vampire Academy #1
on August 16, 2007
Genres: paranormal, young adult
Buy it: Amazon • Add it: Goodreads
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.
Going into it, I honestly wasn’t sure if I was going to like this series or not. The surmise reminded me of Rachel Caine’s Morganville series, the first of which I read and didn’t enjoy. I discovered however that despite the similarities, VA is its own series – and for that I give Mead credit. This book was a very easy read, which is nice. But I felt the first 3/4 of it were extremely lacking in excitement. I’m actually pretty sure that the only reason I finished the book IS because it was so easy to read. But in the end I was glad I did, because things started heating up and it was a lot more fun to read after that.
I personally find the relationship between Rose and Lissa extremely…unsettling. I’m not sure why…I suppose because I feel like Rose is far too attached to Lissa, and tends to make bad/stupid decisions based on that attachment. And I’m sure that’s what the author was going for…it makes sense for someone who’s only 17. I guess I just expected Rose to live up to her badass rep more – be more intelligent and more independent. Anyway, since their bond is what the story is based around, I guess I’ll just have to get over it. Speaking of which, I really must give Mead kudos for the idea behind the bond. I loved how the pieces fell slowly into place concerning Lissa’s specialization. The whole “spirit” thing reminded me a lot of Cast’s House of Night series – which isn’t a bad thing. I love the idea of spirit being a unique power that possesses some level of control over the more common elements of earth, fire, wind, and water.
Also interesting were the romantic relationships that developed between Rose and Dimitri and Lissa and Christian. I’m looking forward to seeing how things progress with R&D, and especially how Rose plans to go about dealing with the Mason situation. I’m in love with L&C’s romance though…I guess because I have a special fascination with “uncommon” pairings. [By uncommon, I mean pairings that don’t seem the best or most obvious or whatever.:] I hope Lissa herself becomes a more interesting character as far as her personality goes, though. As of right now, she alone doesn’t have much going for her in my book.
So I ended up falling in love with this series despite my initial misgivings. What did you think about Vampire Academy? Did it take you a book or two to get into the series, or did you love it from the start? Let me know!