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.
So, I've had this sitting on my bookshelf since it came out and I only just got around to reading it now. Why? Because I was scared. Scared that this book wouldn't live up to VA's standards of heartbreak, action and cliff hangers. And I feel like I was kind right. I'll get the bad out of the way first.
Sydney. I really liked Sydney in the VA books, but for some reason she doesn't rub off on me in Bloodlines like I thought she would. Sydney was one of the few (the others being Adrian and Eddie) characters I was genuinely excited about reading. Sadly, she didn't seem to be the same character as she was in VA. I don't understand why, but her thoughts and actions (while I totally understand her fierce protection for her sister and think that's one of the best aspects of Sydney) irritate me. She's bossy, a little over controlling, and doesn't seem to be able to grow throughout Bloodlines all that much. Yes, this is a six book series but I think change can occur in every book, not just be gradual over the series.
But I'll give her this: she was much, much better than Jill. Jill. Yes, Lissa's scandal sister Jill. The majority of the time she was on the page, I didn't care. I didn't feel anything. Jill just left me feeling empty and wishing that maybe Bloodlines would end up being a story about Rose and Lissa as a surprise. Because that would be one expected surprise! Admit it. Jill did have her moments of strength (the sun and the few pranks she pulled), but I found that her moments of immaturity really grated my nerves. She's been placed in Palm Springs to be safe and she runs off without letting anybody know where she is for unknown reasons? Whatever, Jill. Whatever.
Even Adrian grated my nerves. I understand. Heartbreak sucks really bad. But I didn't want a story on a heartbroken, whiny and spoilt rich, cute guy. Otherwise I would have picked up any other YA novel.
However, I think the one thing I really disliked about Bloodlines was the blurb. There is really no plot or mystery to tempt readers into buying. It makes me feel like the success of Bloodlines (because it's a six book series) is relying upon VA fans to buy this without wondering why or reading the blurb.
And there was *such* potential. There really was. The tattoo and serial killing (though I do wish there was more of that than boring boarding school drama) really lifted the ratings for this book. It was when I slugged through the rest to get to this that I finally felt some redemption. Because that was so clever and exactly what I was expecting from a Mead novel.
Sadly, there's more negatives in this book than positives for me. I will continue with the series because I think there is so much promise. (Or maybe I'll telling myself that?)
Review: 3 stars
Date Published: August 23rd 2011
Date Read: March 2012
Page Count: 421
Series/Stand Alone: First in Bloodlines (Vampire Academy spin-off) series