Friday, October 12, 2012

Review: Vampire Academy

Vampire Academy
by Richelle Mead (Website | Blog | Facebook | Twitter )
Series: Vampire Academy, #1
Published: August 16th, 2007 by Razorbill
Pages: 332 (Paperback)
Genre: Paranormal
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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.
I’ve been hearing things about the Vampire Academy series for years but for some reason they never appealed to me. Maybe that was because of all the twilight hype suffocating me and I was turned off of vampires. Maybe it was because I had read so many  mediocre vamp books that I had little faith in starting a new series. But I was a flipping idiot because not only is Vampire Academy now my favorite book in the genre (only after Morganville <3) it’s one of my favorite books in general.

Richelle’s writing is incredible. I never got bored or frustrated when she diverged from the central plot because I loved learning about Rose and her world - where almost nothing is explained right off the bat. Usually this style of writing frustrates me, I don’t like feeling lost in the book’s world after the first 50 pages or so. But that wasn’t the case this time for the things I didn’t know were eventually explained in a way that didn’t seem like the author was dropping in a vocabulary lesson. That being said, Richelle’s vamp lore was a breath of fresh air. Building on Romanian mythology, in this series there are two kinds of vampires: the evil, soulless Strigoi who are stronger and faster than the still mortal Moroi. That sounds kind of unfair right? Except the Moroi have elemental magic to use against their enemies… that and their half human protectors like Rose and Dimitri.

And OH. MY. GOD. Dimitri..… SEXY. I haven’t been this taken by a male character since Etienne in Anna. Dimitri has that older, Strigoi slayer/Blade/Celine thing going for him. I love how his relationship with Rose gradually evolves from a mutual respect and admiration to full blown love. Ok maybe not full blown in the first book but their chemistry radiates out of the pages. While I read as fast as I could through the majority of the novel out of sheer hunger for more action and more Rose, every time Dimitri was in a scene I slowed waaaaaaay down. Especially that one scene towards the last third of the book. Yeah you know which one I’m talking about. ;) You’re probably all smiling to yourselves remembering that one. (Or maybe that’s just me).

Anyways, finding out that they can’t be together because of their duties to Lissa broke my heart. He and Rose are so duty driven, see that’s the thing about Dhampirs, they sacrifice their wants and happiness for their charge’s safety. Lissa better be worth it and to be honest, I didn’t like her character. I’m hoping she becomes a lot more bad ass in the coming books because in this one all she seemed to do was bitch and feel sorry for herself. And eventually this all makes more sense but she just bugged me. Compared to Rose, Lissa was hard to connect to. I’m guessing her powers a a HELL of a lot stronger than Richelle lets on in this one, and I'm eagerly waiting to see them unleashed.

Overall Vampire Academy is a fast paced, action packed novel that all paranormal lovers will love. Even if you are a bit burnt our by vampire fiction, give this one a try. I know I’m probably one of the last people to read the series, so let me know if your thoughts.

Rating: 5/5 stars
Buy them ALL. Now.


  1. I couldn't agree more with your review! I've been a Vampire Academy fan for a long time!! Even had the opportunity to meet Richelle Mead and have a book signed by her. Too cool! Enjoy the rest of the series - they are all great books!

    Holly @ Words Fueled by Love

    1. Ohhh that's so awesome - I was going to see her at Northwest Book Fest in September but stuff came up. :( I'm on book three now and I am so hooked!

  2. I'm actually the last person on this planet to read these books. I'm trying to read this book for the 22 on 22 Read-a-Thon in honor of Bianca since this is one of her must read/must own series.

    Thanks for the great review I can't wait to dive in