Title: Vampire Academy
Author: Richelle Mead
Published: August 16th 2007 by Razorbill
Purchase: Book Depository | Amazon
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.
Besides all the hype surrounding this book, a large motivation for me reading this series was Adrian Ivashkov. Although he doesn’t appear in the first book, reading Vampire Academy without him wasn’t painful as I expected it to be. It was crappy at some points, filled with clichés and cheesy dialogue but Rose Hathaway definitely made up for it.
Rose is sassy, sarcastic, completely confident and bold and so much fun to read. I like that she’s so stubborn and self-assured, I’ve never come across a heroine like her. At times she was ridiculous, her thoughts being a bit over the top and eye roll worthy but it amplifies the addiction that is Rose Hathaway.
My favourite aspect of the book was Lissa’s and Rose’s friendship. Rarely do I come across friends so fiercely protective and loyal to each other, it felt genuine and I love that it was such an important part of Rose’s life and the story. Usually, romance in YA tends to overshadow everything but there’s surprisingly little of it in this book. The romance really revolves around Lissa and I like her interactions with her love interest. They had a good will-they-or-won’t-they chemistry.
My problems with this book were the plot and just the high school shit drama that was irritating to read about. It was immature and boring and even when the action turned to the villain and the climax, it was still underwhelming. The book lacked that suspense and urgency, there wasn’t a build up and the fight sequences were quite disappointing. The writing didn’t do anything to enhance the experience, the dialogue was funny and sarcastic but it was also corny and made me cringe on several occasions.
There were a lot of things in this book that were quite forgettable but the things I did remember, Rose, her friendship with Lissa and the perfect balance of romance, left a strong impression on me. It didn’t go beyond being a fun, light read but it was enough to get me addicted to the series. Overall, it was okay.