A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this book.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that Vampire Academy is the first book in a popular series by Richelle Mead, featuring two girls at St. Vladimir's Academy: Lissa, who discovers she's a vampire princess, and Rose, a vampire guardian committed to protecting her. A movie adaptation hits theaters in February 2014. While the trailer for the movie makes it looks like a comedy, the novel's dark and full of Mean Girls-style high school bullying. The characters bicker from beginning to end, especially Rose. And there's violence (neck biting, hand-to-hand combat), drinking, sex, and lots of strong language, including "a--hole," "dumbass," "badass," "bitch," "f--k," "pissed," "slut," "whore," and "bastard."
What's the story?
Rose and Lissa are on the run for some mysterious reason. Readers soon find out why when Rose, a dhamphir (guardian to the Moroi vampires) and Lissa, a Moroi vampire princess, must return to St. Vladimir's Academy. At school they discover more mysterious and secrets within St. Vladimir's walls. Rose and Lissa encounter something else at the academy, too: forbidden romance.
Is it any good?
VAMPIRE ACADEMY imagines a different kind of vampire, but the story is pretty much Mean Girls meets Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Rose thinks she has a sarcastic wit but it comes off more nasty than funny. She's extremely vain about her looks and thinks about boys 24/7. Her only redeeming quality is that she truly cares for her best friend, Lissa, and wants to protect her at any cost. Yet, her "I'm better than you" attitude's hard to get past. Granted Rose has some kick-butt fighting skills, but there are plenty of terrific heroines in other YA books. Vampire Academy seems more about high school life with vampires and a mystery thrown in the mix -- not much to sink your teeth into.
Talk to your kids about ...
Do you plan to see the movie version of Vampire Academy? Why do you think the filmmakers chose to give it a more comedic tone than the novel?
Did you figure out the mystery of the novel -- why Rose and Lissa ran away from St. Vladimir's? What makes a good mystery?
What are your thoughts on Rose's sarcastic attitude toward everyone?
- Author: Richelle Mead
- Genre: Fantasy
- Topics: Magic and Fantasy, Princesses and Fairies, Sports and Martial Arts, Arts and Dance, Friendship, Monsters, Ghosts, and Vampires
- Book type: Fiction
- Publisher: Razorbill
- Publication date: August 16, 2007
- Publisher's recommended age(s): 12 - 17
- Number of pages: 336
- Available on: Paperback, Nook, Hardback, iBooks, Kindle
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