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Review: Vampire Academy by Richelle Mead
Monday June 18, 2012 at 12:00 am |

Publisher: Penguin
Published: August 16, 2007
Copyright: 2007
Pages: 332
Form: Paperback
Series: Vampire Academy (1)
Author: Richelle Mead
Buy The BookB&N |  Book Depository


Lissa Dragomir is a Moroi princess: a mortal vampire with a rare gift for harnessing the earth’s magic.  Her best friend Rose Hathaway is a Dhampir: a guardian with a powerful blend of vampire and human blood flowing through her.  Rose’s life is devoted to protecting Lissa from the dangerous Strigoi–the world’s fiercest vampires, who will stop at nothing to make Lissa one of them.

My Thoughts:

After Rose and her best friend Lissa are apprehended from being on the run for two years, they are returned to St. Vladimir’s Vampire Academy.  Lissa, a royal vampire princess, suffers virtually no consequences while Rose is on lock down and is required to take extra training classes to be allowed to stay in the academy.  But Rose will not be kept from Lissa because they have an internal bond that is so powerful that it sometimes snaps Rose into Lissa’s mind so soundly that she can see everything Lissa sees, hears, and feels.  As Lissa begins to discover her powers and becomes increasingly unstable, Rose must be as diligent as ever when it comes to guarding and protecting Lissa.

This book was interesting because beyond the basic vampire hierarchy and politics, the focus is not really on vampires or vampirism, but the relationship between these two girls.  The friendship and connection between Lissa and Rose takes center stage, and it was refreshing to read a good book that doesn’t rely on gimmicks or have the romantic interests as the main focus.  This allowed me to really get to know who Rose was.  Her likes, dislikes, attitude, and overall personality were written clear and concise, and I was also able to get a clear picture of Lissa through Rose’s eyes.

I love that Rose is a fierce, say it like you mean it kind of girl.  She’s snarky, sarcastic, blunt, and oftentimes crass.  But Rose would do anything to protect Lissa as evidenced by her extra trainings with the mysterious Dimitri.  To others she acts as if she doesn’t care and is unaffected, but her budding feelings for Dimitri and her love for Lissa proves otherwise.

Lissa is just as dedicated to Rose as Rose is to her.  When the school humiliates and condemns Rose, Lissa uses her forbidden power to make friends with the rest of the Royal Court and manages to convince everyone that Rose is cool.  I love Lissa because she has no problem caring for people and things others consider outcasts or not normal.  Even her love interest is thought of as a freak and taboo and has been ostracized solely based on something his parents did.  But Lissa only cares that he’s kind to her, understands her,and wants to protect her.

Vampire Academy is wrought with strong female characters, and even the villains are fierce and determined.  This book is all about the relationships between friends, fellow students, faculty, and trained guardians.  I love the slow development of the love relationships between Rose and Dimitri and Lissa and Christian, and I like that there is still plenty of room for them all to grow.

Overall, I loved the book even though it was not at all what I expected.  I will definitely make a point to read the rest of the series.


Other Books in this Series:

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Filed in: Paranormal, Reviews, Young Adult Tags: , , , ,


Written by Jade

Jade is a book blogger from NC. In her spare time she loves to read and build and maintain websites. She has been reading since she was four and building websites since she was 16. SortofBeautiful.com was born on March 8, 2011 and is a fantastic merging of her two favorite hobbies. Enjoy your stay!

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14 Responses to “Review: Vampire Academy by Richelle Mead”

  1. Ash says:

    Vampire Academy wasn’t at all what I expected either. I thought it would be another fluffy vampire romance and it wasn’t at all. I was a huge fan of the friendship between Rose and Lissa, I loved that their friendship was the focus of the novel but I was also really interested in the politics of their world. I’m definitely looking forward to reading the rest of the novels to see how it develops. Great review! :]

    • Jade Jade says:

      Fluffy vampire romnace was exactly what I was expecting as well and I’m glad the author went in a different direction than the norm. Rose and Lissa friendship and connection was amazing.

  2. I bought the box set of these books, and they are still in the plastic…I really should get to them soon.

    • Jade Jade says:

      YAY! I’ve only read this first book, but so far it’s excellent. I couldn’t put the book down so I hope that you enjoy them as well.

  3. I can’t believe I call myself a vampire fan, yet I haven’t read this series. Even more sad is that I already own all the books. I vow to get to them someday. 🙂

    Like you, I agree that the friendship taking the center stage sounds very refreshing, and something unique.

    • Jade Jade says:

      Wow I’m actually surprised you haven’t read this one yet. I just knew you’d already know all about this series. But there are so many vamp books and so little time. I think that you’ll really like this book when you finally read it.

  4. I loved Rose’s ferocity too — it was one of my favourite things about her! Sometimes it bugged me how she was heartless to some people (like Christian, who is so awesome <3), but it was part of what showed how close she was to Lissa, and I loved that too. Most people don't mention their tight friendship when they review this but I think it's SO important. I love that you did!

    Awesome review, Jade! Frost Bite is probably my fave of VA because Adrian makes his first appearance, but wait until you get to Bloodlines — I liked that best! 😉 <3

    • Jade Jade says:

      I love that about Rose too. And I hated that she was so hateful to Christian. In his regard she was just like everybody else. Judging him and treating him harshly because of his parents. But at least she kind of redeems herself in his regard. Glad to know the rest of the series is just as good as the first. I’ll look forward to Frost Bite. And PS….I already have Bloodlines on my shelf!

  5. Oh yay Jade! Thanks for reading this (haha since I’m the reason you chose to do so). I heard a lot about this series when I first started blogging but never really looked into it. Now I know. Great review. I love the focus on the characters rather than the love interests.

  6. Okay, so I have seen these books everywhere and I’ve always kind of avoided them because I thought they were like House of Night. After reading your review and seeing all the comments I think I may have misjudged the series. I’m going to have to check this series out.

  7. I hope this review means you are feeling much better and you are home.

  8. It’s good that the author doesn’t try to rush things, especially since there are so many books in the series. I have the first book, but I still haven’t read it. Now I may need to move it up in the pile. I’ve been in a reading rut. It’s no fun. I hope you’re feeling better Jade!

  9. I’ve never read these, although like everyone else, I see them everywhere. You’re review makes me curious to try them…yes, yes I totally shall. Thanks. ;0)

    Also, I hope you’re feeling better!

  10. Oh! I’m so glad you ended up loving it. That’s great! I was a bit disappointed to be honest, but I did end up liking it. I keep hearing it keeps improving though, so I’m definitely curious to see where the series is going!