Vampire Academy (#1) by Richelle Mead

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Vampire Academy (#1) by Richelle Mead
Young Adult Paranormal
Paperback, 332 pages 
Published 2013 by Razorbill 
If we’re being completely honest, I thought these books sounded silly and had no intention of ever reading them. Then I discovered BookTube and all my favourite booktubers raved about this series as well as Bloodlines (its spin off series). I thought, what the heck, and decided to give it a shot. 

I managed to grab a boxset of the first three books on BookOutlet for $8.99. Not bad, amiright? 

I immediately dove in to the first book. 

As you’d expect for a book titled Vampire Academy, the story is about vampires and it’s set in a boarding school. Mead takes the legend of the vampire and gives it her own spin. Here, there are more than one kind of vampire—there are three (sort of). There are Moroi, your regular vampire. They feed on blood, don’t do to well in sunlight, etc. But here’s the kicker—they are still alive. They can procreate. Then there are Strigoi. These are the more sinister vampires. These are Moroi that have killed someone purposely in their feeding. They become evil and dead, do even worse in sunlight, become stronger, and have a thirst for killing. Finally we have Dhampirs. These are half human and half vampire. They are human in most aspects, but they are stronger with heightened senses. It is their job to protect the Moroi. Both of their survival depends on it. Dhampirs can not procreate on their own. They need Moroi.

Our main characters are Rose and Lissa. They have been best friends for as long as they can remember and would do anything for one another. Rose is a dhampir and Lissa is Moroi. They have a special and unique bond that goes further than their friendship. 

These girls start out on the run, but end up back at the Academy where they train for their future roles. Lissa is quiet, subdued, and compassionate, while Rose is ferocious and sarcastic, with a biting attitude. They may be different, but they complement each other. 

As they struggle to fit in back at the Academy, they fight to keep their secrets, their friendship, and their lives.

While I enjoyed this book for the most part, it’s not what I expected. Well, it’s exactly what I originally expected but not what BookTube led me to expect. I found myself rolling my eyes a lot. It seemed like something my 14 year old self would have enjoyed. My current adult self though? Not as much. It felt so juvenile at times—like, all the boys were “hot” etc. I also found Lissa kind of a flat character. She always felt like this kind of boring damsel in distress. Hopefully she’ll develop more in the later books. Also, hopefully Rose will grow up a bit. She could be funny at times, but I mostly found her to be kind of annoying in her angsty-ness and schoolgirl drama. 

However, like I said, I did still enjoy it over all. I don’t see what everyone seems to love so much, but maybe it will pick up in the other books in the series. I do think I will continue on at least to book three (since I have them). Then I will reevaluate. I do like the whole vampire system and hierarchy. It’s pretty neat. 

I recommend this book to those that really like young adult books and don’t mind the vampire stuff. If you’re not into young adult books, you probably won’t like this. 

Storyline B-
Structure/Execution B
Writing B+
Characters C+
Conclusion B+
Enjoyment B
My Rating B-

Beth is the founder and editor of Fuelled by Fiction. She is a twenty-something east coast Canadian girl who loves writing about books and feminism.