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.
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Lissa uses such a thing for petty high school games. This makes her scum of the earth. You can argue that she was not sane at that time, but that just means she should be institutionalized, not imprisoned. Other people must be protected from her. The endless descriptions of a saint-like Lissa are difficult to read, and only tolerable because they come from Rose. This better be addressed later in the series.
Rose is very, very devoted to the pure-blood vampire that she protects - a kind and gentle, as well as beautiful, vampire princess named Lissa. Rose supports Lissa emotionally, guards her physically, and when Lissa makes bad decisions that could get her into trouble with the school authorities, Rose steps in and takes the blame then, too.
The amazing thing is, Lissa seems to deserve Rose's devotion. She's an incredibly loyal friend, and repays Rose with the trust and esteem she deserves. She's also gifted or cursed with the ability to heal - even to bring creatures back from death - and unusual powers of mind control. But her gifts are both forbidden and costly. In short, blessed as Lissa is - she's in an incredibly difficult position, and the reader, like Rose, wants to protect her.
I liked the story, with its mix of mystery, intrigue, and romance. I liked the friendship between Rose and Lissa, and I liked Rose's snarky, outgoing personality. There's real drama and emotion here, and I can't wait for the next installment.more
After seeing this series in the bookstore taunting me and hearing high praise from Allison (The Allure of Books) I decided to try it out. Now I can’t keep from pushing it at people. I’m sorry Twilight lovers, although I like Twilight too, this series kicks its ass. There are no weak heroines here depending on her sparkling emo-vampire to rescue her or any sparkling vampires for that matter. The world Meade creates in this series is original, multi-dimensional and just plain kickass.
In Meade’s world Strigoi are the ones considered vampires. They are dead beings consumed by blood lust. Moroi, feed on blood but they are very much alive and possess magical powers stemming from the elements of Earth. They specialize in either water, earth, air or fire. Soon it is discovered that there maybe a fifth element of magic. Dhampirs, are the body guards of Morois, since Moroi are too weak to protect themselves and dhampirs need moroi to survive. As the series continues the relationship is subjected to scrutiny and more politics come into play.
For this book though we are introduced to Lissa, a Moroi princess, and Rose, her Dhamphir guardian. The two have been away from St. Vladimir’s for reasons described in the book. Both girls share a psychic connection which lends to their unique relationship. At first I was not quite feeling Rose and her brassy tough girl attitude or Lissa’s seemingly meek personality. I sometimes felt that Rose sacrificed too much for Lissa and it didn’t seem like Lissa reciprocated, but this gets explained and changes through the continuation of the series. It took me reading the second book to really love both of these girls, although Rose has toned down her attitude she still can get on my nerves by constantly reminding readers how much of a badass she is.
What I loved most of all was the fast pace of the book. There is action, mystery, romance, and political intrigue that makes the whole story engrossing, fun and yes even hot at times. I don’t recommend this for younger YA readers. Yes, this one is pretty tame with no sex but our heroines are in their late teens and as the storyline continues there is sex and some alcoholic enjoyment.