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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.
I can't really decide whether I like this book or not. Some parts of it I wasn't all that impressed by and some I thought was interesting and fun. I liked the concept of the story and I think the writing was pretty good. Actually the writing was kind of addictive. I don't know how Mead does it, but when I started reading I couldn't put it down even though I didn't like it all that much in the beginning. Weird, but in a good way. I think.
The story was good, but not extrodinary. I did like the world Mead had built with the Moroi, Stigoi and dhampirs. It seemed to all fit together and was very believable. I think the whole academy setting was interesting and provided a 'real wolrd' touch to the paranormal element; how gossip, social hierarchy, friends, enemies and love all were relatable or, in any case, real.
One of the best things was the bond between Rose and Lissa. I liked that even though it was a first person narrator, you got a clear insight into Lissa's feelings and view and that you get to see things from her pov without Rose being there. Cool.
I loved that Rose could stand up for herself, she could kick some serious butt, and she didn't need anybody's help all the time. But I didn't liked her all that much. In the beginning. She was annoying, reckless bordering to the stupid, slutty, revengeful, not very much in control of herself, she was already drinking and smoking and she seemed to think more about boys and putting herself out there than anything else (except perhaps Lissa). So I had a hard time relating to her and not just wanting to smack her in her face. But she did have some redeeming qualities; she was fiercely loyal to Lissa and would do anything for her, she was protective and did seem to have a sense for what her former job as a guardian mattered. And for that I kept reading. But then something intersting happened, when she started training with Dimitri and learned from him she got more responsible, more in control of herself and got more clearsighted. She did still make some huge mistakes, and meddled in things that weren't really her business, but she also learned from them. I think she changed a great a deal, and actually started liking her. Wow.
While I didn't like Rose that much in the begining, I liked Lissa a lot. She was sweet, careful and more thoughtful than Rose. And I felt really sorry for her, she had had and had such harsh times, and whenever she seemed to gain her footing something new and horrible happened. Though she was more quiet about it, she was also very loyal and protective of Rose, and I really liked their friendship and how much their cared for each other.
And then there's Dimitri. I liked that Russian guy a lot. In one moment he was this quiet and keeping to himself kind of guy and the next moment he's totally tough, cool guardian. Underneath his fierce appearance he was kind of sweet and very protective of a certain someone. And I liked that there were many layers to him, and I think there was a great depth and calmness in him. Which I'm very happy rubbed off on Rose.
In the end I did enjoy Vampire Academy a bit, but I still don't really know whether I want to continue reading this series. I am a bit curious though, so I probably will at some point.
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