Wednesday, August 10, 2011

{Review} Bloodlines - Richelle Mead

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.

Title: Bloodlines {Bloodlines, book 1}
Author: Richelle Mead
Publication: 23rd August 2011
Publisher: Razorbill
432 pages

This book is the first of a series of six. It's a spin-off series for Vampire Academy. This review and the summary are spoilery for Vampire Academy and especially the sixth book.

My review

I had really been looking forward to reading Bloodlines, since the end of Last Sacrifice in December. I was a little disappointed in Last Sacrifice, which, for me, looked more like an introduction to Bloodlines than a conclusion to the original series. I expected a lot from this first instalment, especially to reconcile myself with the universe of this wonderful saga.

I must be one of the few, but I'm a little disappointed in Bloodlines and it did not meet all my expectations. This was nonetheless an enjoyable and entertaining read, but I expected a little more. It is not absolutely necessary to have read Vampire Academy before, in order to enjoy this novel since Richelle Mead recalls the main key points of her universe. That aspect of the story may also be a little daunting for the people who have already read the previous six.

Bloodlines is story of loss, the mourning of the original series. Indeed, Vampire Academy remains one of my best discoveries of 2010, I absolutely loved this series which made me dream, travel and captivated me. If you want to enjoy Bloodlines you have to prepare yourself: it is not Vampire Academy at all, you have to get used to it. The characters are not the same, especially by their personalities. Sydney is really not as strong as Rose and, as I was Team Dimitri, Adrian didn't charm me. I didn't like him in VA because he was in the way between Rose and Dimitri, so now I can't really sympathize with him.

Unfortunately, I was not able to relate to the characters. Sydney is a little too shy, too cautious, she doesn't rebel against her superiors as Rose did. Even if it comes mainly from her education and even if she often shows great courage it was hard for me to get used to her voice. The girl is very naive and I was sometimes a bit disconcert. As for Adrian, if you were team Adrian, there is no doubt that you will totally enjoy Bloodlines.

Besides the characters, my main trouble is that Bloodlines is far too predictable. I had guessed the whole story from the first pages and since the presentation of the characters. As I really don't like spoilers it was a bit difficult for me to enjoy Bloodlines to its fair value. Usually when everyone finds a story predictable, I often never see a thing coming.

Richelle Mead's writing is still the same, pleasant and smooth. There is often a little humor, especially in the dialogues. Adrian has kept his quick and sharp tongue, but Sydney is also quite witty and sometimes snarky. This is the first instalment of a series, but there are still plenty of action. The plot is fast-paced and even if it was sometimes a bit predictable I was nonetheless hooked.

To sum up, Bloodlines is a pleasant, enjoyable and entertaining read. It was a pleasure to dive back into the world of Morois and Strigois. But you have to know and take this into account Bloodlines is really different from Vampire Academy ; the story of Rose and Dimitri has come to an end, now let's follow Jill, Eddie, Sydney and Adrian. Although Bloodlines is a little too predictable and I expected a bit more, I nonetheless liked it. It nicely sets up the new series and the last line made me want to read the second instalment, The Golden Lily, immediately.

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