Amazon Blurb:

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.

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.

Quote:

“They’re waiting for you. Go on in.” Adrian leaned close to Keith’s ear and spoke in an ominous voice. “If. You. Dare.” He poked him and gave a “Muhahaha” kind of monster laugh.”

Review:

Bloodlines is the first in a spinoff from the author’s Vampire Academy series. We’ve already been introduced to the main characters before. I was always reluctant to start reading this while it was ongoing because I didn’t especially enjoy the end of Vampire Academy. Also, I really didn’t like Sydney. I’ve finally procrastinated long enough, it is time to read this already. Sydney can’t possibly be as bad as she sounds!

While this is a spinoff, you do not have to read Vampire Academy before to read this. While the background to this series, as well as the characters, are all in the original series, this is an entirely separate story. Moreover, Bloodlines actually introduces everything so a new reader would not be confused. If you want to read this but not Vampire Academy, you definitely can. You’ll get spoilers for Vampire Academy, of course, but that is inevitable if you skip something.

I’m so, so glad that Sydney wasn’t nearly as bad as I was expecting. She definitely wasn’t as bad as she was in Vampire Academy. I actually grew to like Sydney by the end of the book. Yes, she is bookish and yes she is an overachiever. But, we can tell she is a product of her roots. She is what she is trained to be. Everyone has known an overachiever, and she reminds me of every one of the ones I have known – and is annoying as a result. They always are.

Compared to Sydney, it is all the rest of the alchemists I have trouble with. And I thought the dhampir were brainwashed! Holy shit does their society have some issues. They absolutely hate vampires over everything. They have all these excuses on how they’re better than everyone and everything but nope, they just hate vampires. It is actually frustrating and stressful dealing with the alchemists, and I’m not even the one that has to deal with them! The only good thing is that the main character, Sydney, is improving on her ideas and positions on vampires, which were already pretty good by the start of the series. It isn’t as frustrating as I thought it would be to read, but the alchemists sure try their best to make me hate everything.

We’ve also met the other major characters of Bloodlines before. There are only a few characters that are new, and for the most part they aren’t really around much. The best of the bunch is always Adrian. I love Adrian. My biggest problem with the characters was that because I had met them all, I was constantly looking to make certain they were the same people I remembered them to be. And for the most part, they’re all slightly changed. They aren’t exactly the people I remembered. Plus, they can also be pretty annoying. Adrian mopes around, Jill is whiny, Eddie is spaced out because one of the people at the new school looks like his dead best friend. Adrian is the best, though, but I’m looking for more from the rest in the coming books.

All of them are cut off though. Adrian is basically cut off from everyone, because he can’t even go to school with everyone. Sydney is the least cut off, as she actually has some alchemists around she can talk to, even if it means he has to lie to them. There is no contact with the vampires though, or at least nearly none. That said: oh my god how is there so much politics in this group? They’re cut off, yet so much of the drama is wrapped up in politics. Ugh. I really didn’t expect so much of it, since I knew they were going to be on their own. I don’t like their societies!

I still have no idea how the humans could possibly have no idea vampires exist. There are roving bands of killers eating them, and they don’t have any idea. Now, there are magical tattoos that an entire high school knows about….and the humans still have no clue? What? How does this work? This world hurts me, sometimes.

While the tattoos are the overall reason for the book, the one that has more time spent on it is Jill. Everything is about Jill and getting everyone settled. It is crisis after crisis, most of them revolving around Jill and her special needs as a vampire. The book is also about the alchemists and how much of an ass the entire organisation is. I still don’t know why they have to be involved in this entire thing anyway. The alchemists have never seen fit to involve themselves before now. Fuck them.

Bloodlines really wasn’t very action packed. It was mostly a slow simmer. Drama after drama, problem after problem. That is what went on. While Vampire Academy had the action, this has the problems involving people. There were times I was bored. Quite a few times. It was a very strong start, it sets up the series well. Yet it was also incredibly predictable. Even still, I enjoyed reading it more than I enjoyed reading the end of Vampire Academy. I’m looking forward to seeing where this series goes.

To read more reviews for this series, check out the Bloodlines series page!