Bloodlines by Richelle Mead
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
Today I'd like to hone some of my (poor) mathematical skills and entertain you with some simple but self-explaining equations:
Bloodlines: Richelle Mead= x: Cassandra Clare
Hint: Spin-offs? Bad idea. You either planned them from the very beginning or anybody in this solar system can see that you're clutching at straws here.
Lissa : Rose = Adrian : x
Hint: Spirit users have a most peculiar ability. If you're familiar with Aladdin like I am, you'll know it's one of the wishes that the genie cannot grant. The gifted Moroi can, but with, uhm, side effects.
Rose : Dimitri = Sydney : x
Hint: Ah, forbidden love. While in VA we followed the illicit affair of a then underage student and her infinitely hot professor, we are now presented with the blossoming affection between a (racist) human and a Moroi. It's not declared yet but there are 5 more books to go, can't waste it all in the first one, can we?
Should I go on? Not necessary? I'll give you one more:
Mia Rinaldi : the b!tch in VA = x : the same b!tch in Bloodlines.
I could go on and on but then I'll be spoiling all the book for you, in case you want to read it.
Have you guessed all the unknowns of my very simple equations? If you have, then you also have figured out that, in Bloodlines, Richelle Mead has taken a lot of Vampire Academy, given it a touch up and presented it to us AGAIN.
Sub plots differ, of course, but the general idea? The same.
And possibly worse. One element that really, really infuriated me in Bloodlines is the underlying motif of racism and discrimination that permeates the whole book.
I could not decide whether to compare Alchemists to the Holy Inquisition or to KKK. This hate group's radicated belief (including Sydney's) that vampires are untouchable, disgusting and revolting unnatural beings did not sit well with me. The way it was developed and treated sounded very discriminatory and backwards (and a bit unbelievable too, IMO), you could just take out the word vampire and insert any other ethnic minority that has been persecuted in history and it would have fit perfectly.
Hence, I did not like Sydney. I was pulling my hair out when she was naming her car and complaining about its color. I was scratching my nails on a blackboard when she got miffed because the freakin' fitter of the school gave her a size 4 instead of a 2 and she started getting paranoid about being fat. I was trying gouge my eyes out when she came out with stuff like not accepting food from vampires, checking that the water bottles were sealed not to drink from where they drank and stuff like that. I DESPISE RACISTS. Enough said.
Not to mention the fact that this book is like a DIESEL car. VERY slow to warm up. The action picks up at about... yeah, 80% into the book. Before that it's a whole lot of racist comments, car rides around Palm Springs and mini-golf. Yes, you read correctly.
So... are my 3 stars justified? Probably not.
Yet, after being infuriated for about 80% of the book, when it finally started to take off, I have to say I quite enjoyed myself. Mead sure knows how to write some good action scenes and I foresee, in the far, far, far horizon, character development and possible redemption.
Also, I liked Adrian. He's such an ass I cannot help it. His sarcastic and cocky comments were the highlights of my reading experience. And frankly, after the way he got treated by Rose in VA, I could not help but feel indulgent towards him.
So, mathematical rant aside, I will pick up the next book in the series. This book is not as good as any of the Vampire Academy series but it MAYBE got potential, to be determined by further installments and consequent agonizing wait.
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