In the spirit of upcoming Halloween, I thought I’d review one of my favourite vampire books. Richelle Mead writes awesome vampires. Vampires with attitude and sass. As aforementioned, Bloodlines is the first in a series of a books which are a spin off from the successful Vampire Academy series. One of the reasons I, and so many, loved the Vampire Academy series is the protagonist, Rose. She is, essentially, a badass. And Sydney is well… different. She’s intelligent and responsible. She’s detached, uptight and conservative. She LOVES to be organised. Going into Bloodlines, I had to be prepared for the narration to be very different. But I absolutely ended up loving Sydney. I came to understand that just because she isn't Rose, it doesn't make her any less badass.
Sydney, as an alchemist, has been taught all her life to fear moroi. Her assignment means she now has to work in a very close capacity with moroi, and in her own words act as a “babysitter” – definitely not an ideal situation for someone with such staunch views on vampires. She ends up shaking off some of her beliefs about the moroi which had been ingrained in her from a young age, and struggling with this new reality. This was a very interesting process to watch, and Mead really developed her character well.
Bloodlines does a great job of building the new environment and establishing the dynamics between all of the characters. Sydney and Adrian Ivashkov in particular have some interesting interactions which lay promising ground for what will develop between them. Adrian is possibly my favourite character (and was for the latter part of the VA series too!), still half-drunk all the time, tortured and heartbroken. Mead did a great job of letting readers both see the character he tries to be and the character he actually is.
All in all, I really enjoyed Bloodlines. Yes, it’s different from Vampire Academy. Sydney is not Rose, of course it’s different. But it delivered what I wanted, let old fans learn more about some well-loved characters and brought in a new story to a well-loved universe. There’s plenty of love, hate, betrayal, secrets and magic – what else do you want from a good YA novel?
This post was written by regular reviewer Kath, get to know her here.
Image from Goodreads.