Vampire Academy by Richelle Mead is the story of a dhampir (or Guardian) and her Moroi (full Vampire) best friend. Rose is protecting Vasilisa in the outside world when they're caught and hauled back to the school they ran away from: St. Vladimir (located in the wilds of Montana! haha). Their return to the school doesn't go as smoothly as they would like.
To be honest, I'd heard of these books when they came out but hadn't taken the time to read them. When I saw the commercial for the movie, I decided it was time to pick up a copy and read it. I've always been a read it before I see it when I can girl. To my shock, I found a copy of it on my shelf when I was looking for a different book, so I started reading it as my first "old" book of 2014.
I was surprised to find that I really really liked it! My copy is an early edition--at least, I'm hoping it is because there is a ridiculous amount of errors in it (bad copy editor bad!) which distracted me from the reading. However, the story was entertaining, and I kept wondering what would happen next.
The first 30-40 pages is a bit of an info-dump, but Mead manages to keep it entwined with the plot enough that it wasn't overwhelming. I actually was drawn into the universe pretty easily. Mead's explanations make the world real and believable. It wasn't overly complicated, but there were enough layers to it to mimic the real world.
I did have a couple problems with the book. One, it treats rape culture pretty lightly. There isn't a rape that occurs in the book, but there are several instances where it's about to happen. I don't like that. It didn't seem necessary. But it also wasn't inexcusable. I just wish Mead would have come down harder on the side of no rape is not okay.
My other problem is much lighter. It's kind of misleading to say the wilds of Montana because Montana is a big place, and I originally was thinking like mid-state which doesn't really have 'wilds' in the forest way, but then you find out they're a couple hours from "Missoula" which makes slightly more sense. But then she says Macy is in the Missoula mall which it isn't, and as far as I know, it never has been, so that created a bit of a disconnect for me since I live there.
However, I'm really excited to continue in the series! I can't wait to find out what happens next. And see the movie in February!
Favorite Quote: "If I let myself love you, I won't throw myself in front of her. I'll throw myself in front of you."