Release Date: August 25 2011 (According to Goodreads)
BLOOD DOESN'T LIE. Sydney is an alchemist, one of a group of humans who dabble in magic and serve to bridge the worlds of human and vampires. They protect vampire secrets - and human lives. When Sydney is torn from her bed in the middle of the night, at first she thinks she's still being punished for her complicated alliance with dhampir Rose Hathaway. But what unfolds is far worse. Jill Dragomir - the sister of Moroi Queen Lissa Dragomir - is in mortal danger, and the Moroi must send her into hiding. To avoid a civil war, Sydney is called upon to act as Jill's guardian and protector, posing as her roommate in the last place anyone would think to look for vampire royalty - a human boarding school in Palm Springs, California. But instead of finding safety at Amberwood Prep, Sydney discovers the drama is only just beginning..
I haven't Read any of Richelle Mead's Young Adult fiction before, but I have a friend that speaks very highly of the Vampire Academy series. With that in mind I decided to read 'Bloodlines' in hope that I would find yet another series and author to keep a close eye on. 'Bloodlines' did not disappoint.
Actually, 'Bloodlines did more than just "not disappointing". The book was pretty amazing! and I couldn't put it down. Normally it's the writing style that keeps me intrigued in a story, but this story kept me interested with its unusual storyline, characters and atmosphere.
Richelle Mead's world was especially unique and enticing. I was a little worried at how I would go understanding it seeing as I had never read 'Vampire Academy' and this was a spin-off series. Thankfully she explained everything in the first few chapters and I caught on pretty quickly. Mead used her world to project issues that took place in the lives of the supernatural as well as the lives of humans. I really enjoy authors who can do this because it sugar-coats important topics that teens need to be aware of making the book both entertaining and informative. In this book Mead doesn't necessarily "inform", but definitely makes us aware of things and we therefore question ourselves about how it could have been different. Many of the ideologies presented can definitely play a part in both worlds.
I really enjoyed seeing this world through the eyes of Sydney. Sydney reminds me alot of Dr Brennan from the "Bones" tv show. Because of her incredible knowledge she is so naive and socially impaired. Mead did a great job of writing this novel in first person, because even though we were seeing things through Sydney's eyes we knew that she hadn't noticed or understood things that we did. I also thought it was different to see something from the viewpoint of a religious person - one who is brought up to dislike vampires. This is definitely a change for a Young Adult book and brings new ideas to the table.
The storyline wasn't as predictable as I thought it was going to be either. This is one of those books where you assume halfway or 3/4 of the way through that you know what is happening or going to happen and are proved wrong. It's great to read a story where you are actually surprised by the ending.
This is not a book for those that want a hit of romance though. There is some promise of romance, but nothing really evolves. There are many brotherly and sisterly friendships formed and there is going to be a sequel so romance might be planned from later on down the track.
Overall I give this book 5/5 Stars and mark it as a favourite. It's definitely the sort of book that you want to reread straight away! I am dying to find out what becomes of some of these relationships in the next book. I am also very interested to go back and read the 'Vampire Academy books now.