Vampire Academy by Richelle Mead
Publisher:  Razorbill
Published:  August 16th 200

Hardcover, Signature Edition, 352 pages

 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.

Rose and Lissa have been on the run for two years, after sneaking out of St. Vladimir’s Academy. Rose is a Dhampire and Lissa’s (a vampire) bodyguard.  They are caught and sent back to the Academy.  Rose and Lissa share a very special bond, literally: Rose can sense Lissa’s emotions, all the time and can see into her mind as if she was Lissa herself.  Once back at the Academy, Rose is given a “mentor”, Dimitri, who puts her through rigorous training with the sole purpose of becoming Lissa’s appointed guardian once she graduates.  While neither want to be back at the Academy, they try to make the best of things.  That is until dead animals show up and weird things start happening.  Rose and Lissa’s friendship is tested and Rose is tested to see how far she can and will go to protect Lissa, as well is the subject of love for a man she should not care for. 

Richelle Mead’s first installment of her Vampire Academy Series does a brilliant job of introducing the main characters and the underlying plot.  Suspense is felt until the very end, and even then you are left wanting more.   I personally was a little hesitant in picking up another “vampire” book, but Richelle Mead surprised me.  She develops her characters very well, making all of them 3-dimensional.  Rose is a spit-fire kind of girl: she doesn’t care what others think and she’s very witty and sassy.  However, she stands up for what she believes in and does what is right, no matter what.  Lissa, while a bit “woo is me”, grows tremendously by the end of the book as a human being. 

You will not leave this book being disappointed.  

My Rating:

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