Wednesday, 24 August 2011

Review: Bloodlines by Richelle Mead

Bloodlines by Richelle Mead
Published: 25th August 2011 (UK)
Publisher: Puffin (UK)

Goodreads description:

When alchemist Sydney is ordered into hiding to protect the life of Moroi princess Jill Dragomir, the last place she expects to be sent is a human private school in Palm Springs, California. But at their new school, the drama is only just beginning.

Populated with new faces as well as familiar ones, Bloodlines explores all the friendship, romance, battles and betrayals that made the #1 New York Times bestselling Vampire Academy series so addictive - this time in a part-vampire, part-human setting where the stakes are even higher and everyone's out for blood.

My thoughts:

I adore the Vampire Academy series, so when I heard about a spin off I was ridiculously excited. Adrian and Sydney are probably my 2 favourite VA characters (with Christian coming in a close 3rd) so I wasn't disappointed that the books revolved around them. Sydney is a great narrator, her character is endearing but prickly and a little bit stuck up, all of which makes her very realistic. It was wonderful to see her grow more in this book and come out of her shell a little. Adrian was of course still broken from the events of Last Sacrifice (don't think I'll ever forgive Richelle for that) but he grew steadily too, embracing life again and becoming a little bit more grown up. It was wonderful to see more of Jill too, but I'll be honest and say I can take or leave Eddie.

So for me, the characters were fantastic, but the plot really let the book down. It was an intriguing concept, but badly, badly executed. What I've always loved about Richelle's writing is her ability to really knock you for six with plot twists and villains you didn't expect, and that aspect was severely lacking in this plot. The characters were so obvious, there were too many heavy-handed hints that pretty much gave the game away and their motivations were a bit more superficial than we're used to from Richelle.

 I can't lie, I was disappointed with the main storyline. Some of the sideplots however were slightly better, there was one or two things I didn't expect, and the last 50 or so pages of the book were really good. I will definitely be reading the next one, but I can't help but feel let down by the writing style of this book, as I feel if it had been done a bit more carefully the plot would not have been so easy to figure out. I love the potential romances blossoming here, one in particular, and I loved the introduction of a character I never thought we'd see again, and of a factor that will inevitably cause a lot of tension in the next installment. 

I was going to give this a 3, but I did really enjoy the end and I think the nostalgia value of the familiar characters helped too, so for me it's a low 4/5 


  1. I LOVED Bloodlines! I really liked reading from Sydney's point of view and I love Adrian. I hate how he is now. The ending was great but omg! But I hate see Adrian now... great review :)

  2. I am looking forward to reading this one. Adrien was one of my favorite characters, I look forward to reading more about him.

    Kristin @ Better Read Than Dead

  3. I'm so bummed you were disappointed! You're right - VA is exceptional in part because of the crazy twisty plot lines, though the characters and their relationships to one another really hold it all together. I'm curious to see how that will happen without Rose/LIssa or Rose/Dimitri because that was really the VA glue. I'm glad it kind of came together for you int he end though. I'm starting Bloodlines next though, so we'll see. Now I'm all nervous about it. Damn.

    Megan @ Read It, See It

  4. That's too bad you didn't enjoy the plot. I think one of the best things about the VA series is the Richelle Mead took risks and gave us the unexpected.

  5. It's a shame the plot wasn't great - it's good that the characters are all fantastic though - I love Sydney, she sounds fab as a narrator! Looking forward to reading this, though I'm a bit disappointed too that the plot isn't as great as it could be. Hopefully the next book will make up for it!

  6. I just won this in a contest... So we shall see!!

  7. It took me a while to be won over by the VA series, it was actually a customer at the bookshop that kept me reading and by the last book I loved them! So I think I could be the same as you with this one, we shall see.

  8. I think I liked the book a bit more than you, but I know what you mean about the plot. I think it will end up being well done if you look at the whole course of the series. This one was a bit heavy handed but there was also a lot of set up. I love the romance potential.

  9. The storyline definitely was a little weak. I did enjoy the characters though, especially the ones I loved from the VA series. :) Great review! Sorry you didn't enjoy it as much as you thought you would though. ;)

  10. Bloodlines is a spin off from Richelle Mead's popular Vampire Academy series. As such some of VA's secondary characters come back and take centre stage.

  11. What an awesome honest review! I actually had been avoiding this book because I wasn't sure what to expect and, even though I liked VA it had its flaws as well. HOWEVER, your forthrightness that this wasn't perfect, but still a good read, convinced me to actually buy a copy while I was out shopping tonight! So glad I don't have work tomorrow so I can start reading!

  12. That is really too bad. I'm about a 1/3 of the way in and enjoying it so far. I have to admit that I haven't read the VA series yet. I bought it and shared it with too many people to be able to read it before Bloodlines came out - and I just couldn't wait for this book as I've heard so many great things about VA!


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