Posted by: Kiki | September 23, 2009

Book Review: Richelle Mead’s Vampire Academy series

bloodpromiseBlood Promise, the fourth book in Richelle Mead’s NYT bestselling Vampire Academy series, has just hit the shelves, and if you’ve liked the first three, you’ve got to get the fourth.

vampacademyIt’s always hard to talk about the latest installment in a series without spoiling things for those who haven’t even picked up the first book yet. And Richelle Mead will surely keep you guessing with her twists and turns throughout the four (of six) books.

Richelle Mead’s Vampire Academy books follow the war between two races of vampires, living and undead. Rose Hathaway, a 17-year old half-vampire, is training to be a bodyguard for the living vampires and finds her life complicated by the constant danger. As well as an illicit romance with one of her teachers, Rose continually struggles to protect her best friend from the evils that surround them.

frostbiteAt least that’s what they tell you on the official VA website. But Vampire Academy is more than just another series of vampire novels, riding on the back of the recent vampire wave. Richelle Mead’s vampires are deeply rooted in Eastern European/Russian tradition, and much grittier than the recent fluff in sparkly vampiredom.
Throughout the series,  our heroine Rose, who is neither a vampire, nor in love with one a century her senior, thank goodness, has to face tough moral choices of the kind we care about. Love or friendship? Duty or freedom? How many ways to kick that bad guy’s ass from here to sunrise?

That’s right, the best thing about Rose is she’s anything but a damsel in distress. She kicks butt and she knows it. As a guardian to “good” vampires, she has to. And the only one who could ever hope to be her equal is a guardian every bit as bad-ass as she is herself.


I had the chance to see Richelle live as part of her Australia tour (read all about it on her blog, although for some reason, she never mentions me. Probably because I didn’t have a chance to speak to her. But that’s okay, I forgive her.). She’s not only gorgeous (and pale!), but also very funny and engaging. She talked to a roomful of high school students about writing life, the series, and her editing processes, as well as her adult series.

My favourite part though were the students. A whole room packed with (mainly) girls with their noses stuck in books. Talking about their favourite characters. Comparing the merits of the (many) gorgeous guys in the VA series, claiming this one and that for themselves. I *love* readers. Readers are easily my favourite people in the whole world. And all these readers had come together to hear an author talk about her books. Much love was shared by all.

When was the last time you were at an event where more than 3/4 of the people were reading, like it’s the most natural and fun thing in the world?

No wonder Australia is the second-largest fan base for Vampire Academy. Clearly, we have excellent taste in books.

And to celebrate our absolute awesomeness, we’re going to give away the whole Vampire Academy series, signed by Richelle Mead during her tour, as well as one extra copy (sadly, unsigned) of her latest, Blood Promise.
To enter, leave a comment telling us your favourite public place to indulge in a good book. For extra entries, mention this contest (and let us know where you did it). Each mention gets you one extra entry. Oh yeah, and you don’t have to be in Australia to enter. Just somewhere the postal service can reach.

Entries close on September 30th at 1 am AEST.



  1. Um, can I enter? Darn… the whole series? I thought it was one book, but the whole series? Sigh, okay okay I will have to tell all my friends to enter.

  2. LOL Nat!

    I’ve been meaning to get hold of these books as they do look intriguing.

    And yes absolute awesomeness in giving away the whole lot! wowee. :))

  3. Oh forgot to answer to question 😉 – public places: waiting rooms, public transport, food courts, coffee shops and cafes.

    Oh and I’ve just let the RWA paranormal group know.

  4. I loved this series. i didn’t think i would because i’d already found twilight, but, have to say it was different but great. Also, favourite place to read at the moment is at the pool. That way you can get some vitamin D and not be bored. I had to borrow the books from the library and it was awful, lol, so i’d be happy to win a copy 🙂

  5. I am so jealous you got to go to any of the events, I missed out due to work. 😦

    My fave place to read? Anywhere, I always have a book on me in case I have a spare moment..

  6. I don’t know about having a fave public place to read as I tend to get lost in my books.
    After nearly missing the bus a few times or finding the place is closing when I finally look up,I find the only safe place to read in public is an agreed on meeting place with my OH to come pick me up on his way home.
    Usually a food court so I have ready access to coffee if he is running late.

  7. Great books and a great contest. I’ve posted a link from my blog in case some of my folks don’t know.

    Favorite place to read right now? Anywhere I have a chance! I’m finishing up my rough draft of 13 to Life book 3 and copyedits are on their way to me for book 1 now (so reading time is sparse!).

    One of the things I enjoy most about Richelle’s work is her use of Eastern European influence. I found it far too infrequently used in our country and that was (in part) what encouraged me to write my Rusakovas.

  8. Just twittered –

  9. And mentioned in my blog:

  10. Hmmm, favorite public spot to read?? That’s a tough one as I pretty much read everywhere. I would say at the park after the kids wear me out. But the place I do the most public reading is in the car as I wait for the kids to get out of school. You would be surprised at how many other parents ask what you are reading! Airports are good for questions being asked too! 😉

    I twittered

  11. yeeha. VA is on my TBR list.

    Places: toilet, walking to son’s school, buses, waiting for hubby to fill car up, laying on sons trampoline and I’m reading right now, waiting for pages to load on computer 🙂

    Twittered it

    and on Aussieromswapgroup.
    Kelly Ethan

  12. I haven’t actually read this series but i did look it up and have a bit of a read about and it looks like its a fantasic series of books just one of the many kinds of differents types of books I’m into, and even if I don’t win I will still look into getting myself a copy of the books.
    My favourite public place to read is anywhere mainly the beach if not the beach then always before I go to bed (I know that isn’t a very public place but its what works for me aswell as my lunch break)

  13. I love all vampire books! There is just something so sexy about them, mmmh.

    I read anywhere and everywhere. I run into people on the street all the time because I have my nose stuck in a book, LOL.

  14. I read and watch anything with vampires. The collection would be a fantastic addition to any library.

    Favorite public place to read is on a slow moving boat on the lake early in the morning with a hot cup of coffee.

  15. I love reading in bed too, but I’m usually flat out during the day so no reading then. A friend suggested buying MP3 versions of novels and loading them on your iPod so that when you’re on the treadmill or doing housework etc you keep entertained. It’s a thought.

  16. These sound great!

    Favorite public place to read… by a pool, the beach, waiting for daugheter to finish ballet, in kids cubbyhouse waiting for my pretend meal to be served… anywhere!

  17. Wow! I’ve been planning to start on this series soon…

    Favorite public place? Waiting at the station to pick up my son after work.

  18. sadly, I rarely get a chance to read in public – except when I’m at the doctor’s surgery waiting for my booked appt that was supposed to be 30 minutes ago. Seriously, why do they even bother making appointments if you have to sit and wait half the day anyway?

    Most of my reading happens before I turn the lights off at night. Which is totally appropriate if I’m going to read a vampire book.

  19. I LOVE Vampire Academy! I read all the books a couple of weeks ago and now desperately want my own set. My favourite public places to read… sitting on the grass against a tree in the park… also sitting in the gutter, laying back on top of a moving bus around the city, resting in the comfy display beds at furniture shops… really, as long as my nose is buried in an amazing book that will transport me to another world, the place doesn’t matter! I could read anywhere 🙂

    +1 Linked it on my sidebar.

    I’m an aussie too … so do I get extra brownie points in the form of Dimitri… here… now… on my doorstep? =)

    Seriously awesome contest you guys are hosting, thanks!!

  20. Nat, audiobooks are fantastic if you get ones with great narrators.
    I’ve actually got the first VA in audiobook format, and it’s brilliant! Really well done.
    There are a lot of great actors who do YA audiobooks these days. Maybe I’m just a sucker for someone telling me a story, but I almost always have several audiobooks queued up on my iPod for when I’m out and about.
    Being carless, I walk a lot…

  21. My favorite place to indulge in a book is at a park bench under a tree 😀

  22. I love vampire books and this contest is fab! I’ve blogged about it over at mine to spread the awesomeness around!!!

  23. […] time to win the first four books of the Vampire Academy series by leaving a comment at the end the Vampire Academy post. Entries close 30 […]

  24. I loved the Vampire Academy series, dare I say more then Twilight. Mead’s writing style is so easy to read and her ability to capture emotions and portray them in print is fantastic. Can’t wait for the next installment.

    I’ve blogged about this competition on my website and have a permanent link to this site there too.

    I love to read in the wilderness, so to speak. Anywhere out in nature be it beach, forest etc where you can feel alive and envigorated. I hate being bored waiting around so reading in the school carpark is another favourite of mine. But I have to admit that I prefer reading in private because there are less interruptions and you don’t have to stop and put the book down.

  25. How very generous of you! I’d love to enter. My favorite place outside of my bedroom to read is on my porch with my cat Blackie.

  26. Amaazing contest!! I love the Vampire Academy series. Please enter me!

    My favourite public place to read is the beach!


  27. Oooh, what a great contest! =)

    Also, my favorite public place to read is either by the pool or at the beach.


  28. My fave public place to read is the park.
    throuthehaze at gmail dot com

  29. My favorite public place to read is the library.

  30. […] Love YA is giving away a complete signed set of Richelle Mead’s Vampire Academy  novels.  Contest ends September […]

  31. I like reading on buses. I take public transportation to work and its 45 mins each way so I get quite a bit of reading done.

  32. Wow, enter me!! My favorite public place to do a little reading is my school. Not only is the library comfy and quiet, but even the common area is a good place to curl up (some very comfy chairs!) and read. Yes, there are some days where you’d rather stear clear of the commons, because there’s an event going on, but no worries! In one of the other buildings there’s a quiet study area you can go to instead. Oh yes, I’ve spent many hours reading at school.

    Morning Glow
    ohmorningglow AT aol DOT com

  33. My favorite public place to read is in a the waterfront. I live on a river and it is always so breezy. The water is calming.

    I know, living under a rock, but I haven’t read this series yet. Please, Please enter me. I was planning on reading it if the library ever orders the copies!

  34. My favorite public place to read is at the park!!!
    I have SO

  35. ooops – stupid keyboard (plus I have a beloved kitty on my lap so am trying to gently type over his head lol)

    ANYway – I have SO been longing to read the Vampire Academy series, thank you for the chance to win them!

    Have a wonderful week 🙂

  36. I love to read on my porch, but in a public place? i don’t know. the park would be nice…or at a friend’s house. I read a lot on campus.

  37. I love to read most in bed snuggled up under the covers, but in public I love to read on trains, planes or buses – long journeys pass so much better with a book! Hey Presto! You’re not stuck on a crowded bus anymore, you’re off in another country with your favourite characters!

  38. Hi everyone 🙂
    I love to read in the train – I have to travel 3 hours every day and what coud I do instead of reading? *grin*

  39. I always have a book with me, read whenever possible!

  40. I read every day in my car, waiting at the elem. school for my kids to be dismissed! I leave the house 20-30 minutes early just so I can indulge! 😉

  41. I Twittered your contest! @ErinRagan

  42. I read at the gym, I know, plenty of other things to do at the gym, but reading is my sport of choice, lol.

    Please enter me!

    Dottie 🙂

  43. I tweeted at


  44. My favorite place is the park.

    Blogged –

    Tweet –

  45. If it’s not too late, I also tweeted in addition to my comment up above somewhere!

  46. My favorite public place to read is the laundry place. Sadly, I don’t have a washer or dryer so I have to travel to do laundry. But I like the quiet time to read. 🙂


  47. tweeted:

  48. Not sure if I’m late or not. So enter me if I’m okay, if not.. well.. boot me out. 😀 Great contest!

  49. blogged:

  50. Well…I enjoy a nice read at the park. Specifically next to ponds/lakes. Nice and cool 🙂 And relaxing!

  51. Please enter me. I have been wanting these! Thanks for the chance. I just love to read on the beach.

  52. My favorite public place to read is in a comfy chair at Barnes & Noble…or by the pool of our clubhouse when the weather is nice. Please enter me and thanks for the chance to win these great books!

  53. OH! I want this! I would love to read this series! Thank you! My favorite place to read is in my truck at lunchtime. It’s the only place I can – I have 3 kids at home so I don’t get alot of time to read there! Thanks!

  54. I would like to win these interesting books. Enter me please. thanks

  55. I like to read at the boat harbor across the street. Its great to hear the clanging of the boats while I read.


  56. I love to read in parks during Spring.. the weather is so nice!

    +1 TWEETED

  57. please enter me, ty

    well about evrey place, cars, dr office, store lines, ,

    well it in side, but cookin ,lol i burn alottt of stuff

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