First Lines: I couldn’t breathe. There was a hand covering my mouth and another shaking my shoulder, startling me out of a heavy sleep. A thousand frantic thoughts dashed through my mind in the space of a single heartbeat. It was happening. My worst nightmare was coming true.
This is the Vampire Academy spin-off series, told from Sydney’s point of view. If you haven’t read the original series, you may be a bit lost in this one. They reference characters and events in past books. Mead does a good job of trying to catch you up on what happened before, but there’s only so much that can be said.
*Hey, this may be the first in this series, but it’s practically the 7th in the VA series.*
Sydney the Alchemist’s life has been far from easy since she helped Rose escape prison. The Alchemists don’t trust her anymore. When a new assignment comes in to protect the princess Jillian, Sydney volunteers even though it’s her sister Zoe that was wanted. Now, Sydney has to pretend to be a senior at a private high school in Palm Springs to keep Jill safe. Little did she know it would come with a whole entourage of vamps. Or mysterious tattoos that give people highs. Or a Moroi killer than may or may not be a threat to Jill. It’s up to Sydney to figure out what problems need her attention and how to solve them.
If you’re expecting this to be just like VA, you may be a little disappointed. It has many of the same elements and characters, but Sydney is a very different narrator than Rose was. While Rose is interested in kicking butt, protecting Lissa, and drooling over Dimitri, Sydney is a brainiac. She’s very smart, knows her responsibilities, and is a little socially inept. She’s a great narrator, but she’s different than Rose. So keep that in mind.
I was very happy to see so many familiar faces come back! Jill is an obvious one. We didn’t get to know her very well in the last series, so this has been a great way to know her better. But I was most excited to see Adrian. I had heard he was in it and boy, was he ever! He has such a major role and it’s so different than how he used to be…well, sorta. Adrian’s never really going to change, which is a good thing. If Adrian wasn’t snarky, I’d be worried.
I liked it a lot. I’m addicted to the VA world. Everything about it is so different from other books. Plus VA was like, the first vamp series I got really into. Even before Twilight. Wish they’d make this series into a movie…