Vampire Academy by Richelle Mead

Vampire Academy by Richelle Mead
Publisher: Razorbill
Format: ebook
Genre: Paranormal, Young Adult
Publication Date: 08.16.2007
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.

Finally, after much talk about reading this book, I picked it up one day and just flew through it. I admit that I waited so long (years!) because I am pretty much done with vampire books. They're overdone, and if I never read another book about vampires, it will be too soon. So what kept me reading this time? Well....

Although Vampire Academy has a lot of the same points as other vampire books (blood sucking, mysterious love interest, some crazy vampire that makes life difficult for the ones who just want to be good), it is decidedly different. It is social taboo to drink the blood of anyone but the feeders, and it is thought to be just plain disgusting to let another vampire drink your blood. Killing anyone while drinking their blood turns you into an evil vampire; meaning that yes, there are good and bad vampires. There are also half-vampires who are stronger and faster than the vampires, and who train to be their guardians.

Sounds confusing, I know, but believe me: it's interesting.

The book starts out with a vampire and her guardian (Rose, the main character) who are on the run from...no one knows what, but it's got them scared to death. This mystery follows them through the book, and the stakes get higher as they discover more about themselves. Rose is a strong-willed, kick-butt heroine who has a mind of her own. What I really like about her is that she knows when to fight...and she also knows when to get help. I was so relieved that I didn't have to suffer through page after page of a heroine who doesn't know when she's in over her head. There is nothing more annoying than that, and I found none of it in this book. There is--of course--a love story, but it is not your average starcrossed, insta-love, or love at first sight. It is a forbidden love, and develops slowly with some really good parts that romance lovers with adore.

All-in-all, the story is pretty original and definitely stands out in the genre. The only thing keeping me from giving it a full rating on the scale, is that I felt a little detached from the story; I didn't get into it quite as much as I wanted to. I have the feeling that if I had read this book when it first came out (before the genre was so over-saturated, it leaks into everything else), I would have been a raving fan. As it is, I can see the originality of the story but I'm not as drawn to it as I once was.

I definitely recommend this to those who love vampires or the paranormal, especially those who are just getting into the genre.

Read this if:
...you want a different take on vampires,  you like a strong heroine, and you believe not all vampires are bad.

Content Warning
*This section may contain some spoilers about content!*
Highlight between the brackets to reveal the text.
{Some underage drinking, and some swearing.}

This review is linked in the Review Appreciation Blog Hop over at The Cait Files. Check it out and link up a review of your own!


  1. I definitely reckon you'd've loved it more if you'd have read it before the genre became so saturated, like you said. I read it when it first came out and LOVED it, but I'm sure if I read it now I'd be groaning. I hope you enjoy the rest of the series if you read it.

    Feel free to link this up to my review blog hop here

  2. I agree, I bet if you read this years ago you would have been enthralled with it. I love vampires. I'm still into them and this is my second favorite vampire series. I think Twilight will always hold top place in my heart because it was so fresh and new and caught me off guard but I almost love this series just as much. If you can stomach it, keep going with the series. It just keeps getting better and better. I cannot recommend it more highly. 4 out of 5 stars is pretty good for something you didn't really get into. Just saying.

  3. I still haven't read this series either, even though it has been on my shelf for some time now. I'm glad that you enjoyed the story and that it had original ideas. Can't wait to read this now, thanks. :)

  4. Cait: That totally makes sense, and I wish I had read it a long time ago so I could be as excited about it as I would have been. Thanks for offering to let me link it up! I'm on my way over. :)

    Alisa: I feel the same way about Twilight. As much as people hate it, it made me feel something, and opened me up to the entire genre. I'll definitely keep going, just because I'm interested...and maybe I'll bet even more excited! :)

  5. Alexa: I hope you do! It definitely stands out, and is worth reading. :) Thanks for stopping by!

  6. I recently started reading this series too. Very good. I was surprised :) And they only get better and better. I'm on book 3.

  7. Honestly, I didn't become a die-hard fan until... the third book? I thought the series was just okay until book 3 or 4. I hope you continue the rest of the series! I'm really not a huge paranormal reader so it's a big deal when I say that I LOVE this series.

  8. My sister gave me a copy of this for Christmas. I admit I have been hesitant to pick it up because once I get going on a series I can't stop. From the reviews I've read, I'm sure I would like it and go crazy trying to get my hands on the rest of the series to read as fast as possible.


  9. Yup, *definitely* an awesome series, no? And I totally agree with you when you wrote, " I was so relieved that I didn't have to suffer through page after page of a heroine who doesn't know when she's in over her head. There is nothing more annoying than that, and I found none of it in this book." That's one of my pet peeves, too.

    Fun review!


  10. Sarah: That's what I keep hearing, that they just get better. Makes me excited for the next one. :)

    Cialina: High praise! I'll definitely keep reading. It's good to know that it gets really good!

    Jehara: It's definitely a book to go crazy for. I hope you read it soon!

    Lori: I'm glad I'm not the only one! I just hate seeing rookie mistake after rookie mistake, when asking for help is all it takes to get something done. I definitely appreciated that there was none of that in this book.

  11. I bet you would have liked it better like you said. I know I read it pretty close to when it came out, and I'm still completely in love with the series. :)

    I love your layout.

    New follower.

  12. Ashley: Thanks so much for stopping by, commenting, and following! :) I'm reading more of the series, and am loving it more and more with each book.


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