Frostbite (Vampire Academy #2)~ Book Review
by Richelle Mead
Read January 2010
I am so glad I received the second book in the Vampire Academy series from my Secret Santa, Nikki at Ramblings of a Bibliophile. I actually read this book before the 3rd House of Night book, Chosen, but that one was next to me when I was ready to write a review. See how lazy I truly am?
I have heard high praise for this series and from what I have seen so far, it is well-deserved. The unique vampire society and different classes of vampires is such a good change. Although recently we have seen everything from sparkly “vegetarian” vampires, vampires with tribal tattoos, vampire transfiguration, and even ‘ol Mr. Darcy is now a vampire. In the Vampire Academy, book one of the series, we learn about the three different types of vampires in this fictional world. The Moroi are the ruling upper class. They require blood to survive and need to stay out of the sunlight. In general, these are “good” vampires. When a Moroi and a human reproduce, you end up with a Dhampir. A Dhampir can also result from a Dhampir/Moroi cross. The Dhampir are the guardians of the Moroi. They no not require blood to survive and do not need to avoid sunlight. They are, however, superior in strength and reflexes to both humans and Moroi. The last class of vampires in this world are the Strigoi. These are “true” vampires. Not only do they share the Moroi need for blood and nocturnal lifestyles, they are killers. They are Moroi who have gone evil or human/dhampir victims who have been turned. See! I told you it was original!
As far as heroines go, Rose Hathaway is one of the most honest, kick-ass ones I have seen. She is far from perfect and she knows it. Because she is a Dhampir, she is schooled in ways to protect her Moroi charge. This is not limited to multiple ways to kill and maim. The best part of this training is her extra lessons with Dimitri, who even has me swooning. He is her mentor, and 7 or so years her elder, but it never seems creepy or perverted. Heck, my husband is 6 years older than I am. Although we met when I was 23…I suppose it’s a bit different. The two share a mutual attraction and try their hardest to suppress their feelings for each other because it might get complicated if they are both assigned to protect Lissa, Rose’s best friend. As her guardians, they must be willing to not only sacrifice their own lives, but each other’s to protect her. Kind of messed up, but this is their way of life.
This installment of the series was even better than the first. Rose is such a perfectly flawed character. She wants to be treated like a grown-up, and yet she still catches herself being childish with many things. There are some serious plot twists that force her to look a little closer at her choices, and I love the growth her character makes.
I try not to compare books when I write my reviews, but I can’t help myself with this one. I think it’s because I read two so similar books, so close together. When I sit and think about Chosen (House of Night #3) and what I didn’t like about it, and then look at Frostbite (Vampire Academy #2), all of the problems are gone. Both books are about teenage vampires going to school, encountering boy trouble, menacing forces, and being a teenager on top of it. Where I was annoyed with the teenagers in Chosen, the characters in Frostbite were endearing. The same goes with the dialogue. Frostbite was just more believable for me, as much as a book about teenaged vampires can be. Also, the sexual nature of Chosen seemed to go over the top. Zoey was completely slutty, for lack of a better word. She just doesn’t seem to be able to say no. Rose tries to forget her feelings about Dimitri by trying to move on to another guy, but it isn’t like she and Dimitri have a relationship. While she isn’t being fair to the person she moves on to, she seems to honestly think those feelings will come as time goes on. When she realizes they won’t, she breaks it off.
I actually wanted to go to the bookstore right away and pick up the 3rd book in the Vampire Academy series. Since I have a full bookshelf (and then some) of books I have not read yet, I decided to hold off for a while and try to get some non-teenage vampire stories off of the shelf first. Right now I am on North of Beautiful and enjoying the change! I was excited enough to look it up on Goodreads, but I really wish I hadn’t. Some (insert your own expletive here) decided to post a review that showed up right on top, in crappy half-english about the major MAJOR event that happens in Book #3. Annoyed is an understatement.