1. Vampire Academy
3. Shadow Kiss
4. Blood Promise
5. Spirit Bound
6. Last Sacrifice
Short Series Synopsis: (from author's website)
Two races of vampires walk our world. One, the Moroi, are alive and wield elemental magic. The other, the Strigoi, are undead and evil--feeding on the innocent to survive. Rose Hathaway --a half-vampire with poor impulse control-- is training to be a bodyguard for a Moroi princess. Learning to decapitate and stake is hard enough, but Rose's real danger may lie in an illicit romance with one of her instructors...
My (Spoiler Free) Thoughts:
Let’s start this off by summing up the series in one word: Amazing. Two words? Absolutely amazing. This is not your typical vampire series. Don’t let stereotypes or the cheesy covers (see: above) turn you off, because this is absolutely a series worth picking up, even if (or perhaps because) you’re not usually a vampire or paranormal fan.
I first heard of these books a couple of years ago, but I pretty much instantly dismissed them. Ouch, I know. If I had read as many blogs as I do now I probably wouldn’t have done that, because it was all the squee’ing over ‘Last Sacrifice’ that caused me to pick up the first ‘Vampire Academy’ book. I thought “If all these bloggers, whose opinions I trust, are going insane over this series, there must be something to it.” And believe me, there is!
To start with, the main protagonist of ‘Vampire Academy’ is Rose. Rose is a kick-ass heroine who is physically strong, but is also funny, loyal, and smart. The great thing about Rose is that she defies a lot of the stereotypes of strong female characters. She’s intelligent, but she’s not all bookish. She’s strong, like I said, but she’s not stand-offish. Rose cares deeply about her friends, especially her best friend Lissa, and she knows how to feel things: in fact, sometimes her emotions run away with her.
While Rose is the main character in the series, there are a whole cast of characters to fall in love with. The thing that’s so fabulous about these characters is that they all have their purpose. Some authors create throwaway characters, but not Richelle Mead. If you see a character who seems like they have a small role, don’t be fooled: they’re sure to pop up later when you least expect it. I don't even want to start writing about the specific characters (Christian, Adrian, Eddie, etc) because I could write paragraphs on how much I love each one.
As I mentioned, these books are great even if you’re not usually a vampire fan. I know I'm definitely not a vampire fan, but the world that is created in these books is different from any other vampire book I’ve read. I love how there are both “good” and “bad” types of vampires, and there is a very specific distinction between them. I love how the vampire world exists in and alongside the human world, but is secret all the same. Much like with the characters, every little decision made within these books has repercussions. Plot lines get wrapped up, and the action always comes to a conclusion perfectly.
These books are so much more than typical vampire books, as they feature themes of love, friendship, and loyalty. Most of all, the characters are so strong and amazing and the plots are action-packed. If you’re looking for an addicting new series, definitely be sure and check out the six ‘Vampire Academy’ novels, and the upcoming spin-off series, Bloodlines. I'm still thinking about these books a couple of weeks after I read them, and I anticipate reading them again in the not too distant future.
Check Richelle's website for information on how to purchase signed copies, as well as find links to Amazon.com and Barnes & Noble.