Title: Vampire Academy (Vampire Academy #1)
Author: Richelle Mead
Genre: Paranormal Romance – Vampires
Publication Date: August 16th 2007
My Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
“If I let myself love you, I won’t throw myself in front of her. I’ll throw myself in front of you.”
Only a true best friend can protect you from your immortal enemies . . . Lissa Dragomir is a Moroi princess: a mortal vampire with a rare gift for harnessing the earth’s magic. She must be protected at all times from Strigoi; the fiercest vampires – the ones who never die. The powerful blend of human and vampire blood that flows through Rose Hathaway, Lissa’s best friend, makes her a dhampir. Rose is dedicated to a dangerous life of protecting Lissa from the Strigoi, who are hell-bent on making Lissa one of them. After two years of freedom, Rose and Lissa are caught and dragged back to St. Vladimir’s Academy, a school for vampire royalty and their guardians-to-be, hidden in the deep forests of Montana. But inside the iron gates, life is even more fraught with danger . . . and the Strigoi are always close by. Rose and Lissa must navigate their dangerous world, confront the temptations of forbidden love, and never once let their guard down, lest the evil undead make Lissa one of them forever . . . – Excerpt from Goodreads.
I would normally never take a second glance at a book like this. I would have seen the cheesy title and cover and turned my nose up at it. Luckily, so many book bloggers and booktubers had recommended this book and said to ignore the painfully ugly book cover, that I thought I’d give it a chance.
I don’t want to give away too much because I think one of the most fun parts of reading this is learning the lore as you go. The title only gives you a taste for what this one is about. I am not really one for books about vampires but this one was so much fun. I think if you enjoy lots of drama, action and romance then you will likely have a good time with this one. I’m always up for reading about a story that takes place in a school – one of my favorite settings. No idea why, just one of the many tropes I actually enjoy.
Richelle Mead manages to create an interesting world, feeding you a little bit of information at a time. The protagonist, Rose, is a pretty badass female and I like that she is far from perfect. She is extremely frivolous at times, fairly whiny and she can be petty and jealous but at the same time you won’t find anymore more loyal of friend. One of the love interests, Dimitri, is the perfect swoon-worthy guy. He reminds me of Angel from Buffy the Vampire Slayerand that is enough for me to fall in love with him. I really like that Mead does not just focus on all the romance though, there is still enough action and lore to balance out the book.
I would might have even given this book five stars, but one thing really held me back on that. The CONSTANT reminding the reader of how good looking Rose was and how great her body was and that every guy wanted her. I am fine with a character being narcissistic to an extent, but this was too much. It was the only time I felt the writing was a bit awkward and clunky and took away from the character. We get it, Rose is hot. You don’t have hit us over the hammer with it. We get it! I hope that Mead doesn’t continue with that through-out the entire series. I found myself rolling my eyes at parts because of it.
This book is a complete guilty pleasure. I probably wouldn’t recommend this to anyone that can’t stand high drama between a bunch of angsty teens/young adults, because there is a lot of it to go around. I love soap operas, so this was a blast for me. I will be continuing the series and I’m already interested in the other series Mead has to offer.