Book rating: 04 Hardback Bloodlines (Razor Bill)

By (author) Richelle Mead

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  • Publisher: RAZORBILL
  • Format: Hardback | 421 pages
  • Dimensions: 150mm x 213mm x 51mm | 522g
  • Publication date: 23 August 2011
  • Publication City/Country: New York
  • ISBN 10: 1595143173
  • ISBN 13: 9781595143174
  • Sales rank: 17,923

Product description

The first book in Richelle Mead's "New York Times" bestselling Bloodlines series 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.

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Author information

Richelle Mead ( is the #1 "New York Times," "USA Today," and "Wall Street Journal" bestselling author of the Vampire Academy series. Originally from Michigan, Richelle now lives in Seattle, Washington.

Customer reviews

By Sarah Elizabeth 06 May 2013 4

(Source: I borrowed a copy of this book.)
When Sydney's father wakes her in the middle of the night to join an alchemist's meeting, the last thing she expects is to be spent to Palm Springs to share a room with a Moroi vampire!
It's the alchemist's job to keep vampires under control, but because of a change of monarch, the new queen's sister - Jill is in danger, and it's now up to Sydney to keep her from harm, even if that means attending boarding school with her and pretending to be her sister.

There's more going on in Palm Springs than Sydney know though. There's aMoroi vampire who is being investigated because he might be selling his blood, and there's several other people lurking around who seem to cause trouble without even trying. There's also the small matter of several girls being found dead with their throat slit open, and a tattoo parlour that's selling magical tattoos.
Can Syndey keep Jill safe though? What is the alchemist who is in charge of Palm Springs up to? What is going on with these magical tattoos? Who is killing girls and slitting their throats? And is there anything to the 'Vampire Hunter' rumours?

An interesting take on vampires, with a feisty main character.

When I saw this at the library I decided it was probably time for me to give this series a try!
Sydney was a truly feisty main character, and she was also professional and considerate. She took her job protecting Jill very seriously, and made a real effort to keep things under control, both at the school and elsewhere in Palm Springs. She made a point of sorting things out, even small things that other people wouldn't have thought important, and even tried to help the other Moroi vampires who were close to Jill.

Some of the other characters were a bit annoying though - Keith especially. Jill was a little whiney, and I don't get why things like the fact that she wouldn't be able to do PE in the sun weren't addressed before they went out there! Adrian was alright, and I'm guessing we're going to be hearing more from him in the next books.

I liked the storyline in this book, and I liked that there was a lot going on without it being confusing. I liked how the different storylines tied together, and there were plenty of twists and turns that I didn't see coming. I thought that the take on vampires was very different to what I have read before which was a refreshing change. It was also good to read a book where people weren't falling all over themselves to become vampires!
I haven't read the 'Vampire Academy' series so I can't compare the two, but I thought this was pretty good, the ending left lots of storylines open though which will obviously continue in the next book. This book did have an ending though, although considering what happened Sydney certainly seemed to get a lot out of the ending of this book!
Overall; a different take on vampires, with a feisty main character.
7 out of 10.

By Pretty Little Reader 14 Aug 2012 3

As a huge fan of the Vampire Academy series, I had high hopes for Bloodlines. I was definitely apprehensive about the narrator switch, but I was also excited to see things from a different perspective. I shouldn't review Bloodlines by comparing it to Vampire Academy, but considering we see so many of the same characters, you'll have to excuse my use of comparisons.

Narrating Bloodlines is Sydney Sage, an alchemist, who has been educated since early childhood on how humans must be protected from vampires, and that vampires are an unnatural species. I found it hard to relate with Sydney's fears of Moroi vampires, as in the Vampire Academy series they are portrayed as normal people, who just happen to need blood to survive. It was actually a little uncomfortable to read some sections, specifically those where Keith talks about how wrong it would be for Sydney to feel compassion for any Moroi, or when Sydney reacts to Jill/Adrian's use of magic, as it felt quite racist. I kept trying to put myself in Sydney's shoes, but I just couldn't empathize with her fear or beliefs about the Moroi. I also didn't understand why Sydney kept comparing her body shape/size to Moroi, especially when she's supposed to believe they're unnatural. The references to Sydney stressing over her weight/image did nothing to forward the plot, and I found them quite annoying and unnecessary.

Putting aside my uncomfortableness with Sydney's discriminatory beliefs, I was also disappointed by the plot. It seemed promising - Jill is being attacked by rogue Moroi who would like to see her killed so Lissa is unable to keep the throne - but then, not much happens. We go through Jill's trials and tribulations of being an outcast in a new school (all from Sydney's perspective, of course), and we see Sydney investigate some suspicious talent/mind-altering tattoos reminiscent of her Alchemist lily tattoo, but its mostly just dialogue (which I have to say, is very well written) and situations being blown out of proportion to create conflict. Its not until the last 100 pages or so before we see any action, which is a huge let down after the non-stop action of the Vampire Academy series.

I also didn't understand how Sydney's actions could so completely go against her thoughts. She was constantly trying to prove that she was not a "vamp lover" in order to regain some trust from the Alchemists after her involvement in harbouring a dhampir fugitive, yet she kept going out of her way to make life easier for the Moroi around her. As someone who was supposed to believe that Moroi are an abomination, she should not have been so concerned about why there were so miserable. Her job was to ensure Jill was safe - not that she was happy. I wish there had been more internal struggle with her decisions to help make life easier for Jill (and Adrian for that matter) to correspond with her disgust we sometimes bore witness to (like during Jill's first feeding). It was hard to empathize and understand her dislike of Moroi when she was bending over backwards to make sure they weren't unhappy or uncomfortable.

Now having said all that, I want to make it clear that Bloodlines is written in true Richelle Mead fashion - its a page-turner that won't let you put it down; I flew through this book because I needed to know how it all came together. Just because it wasn't the action-packed thrill-race I was expecting does not mean that it was not well written. Once I was able to accept that Sydney was not Rose, and that I shouldn't expect a huge blow-out fight (or for her to stand up for herself) when faced with confrontation, I was able to enjoy most of what Bloodlines had to offer (although I did miss the romance that's so much a part of Vampire Academy). Unfortunately my excitement for the next instalment has nothing to do with any of the characters we saw throughout Bloodlines, but for the return of one of my favourites from Vampire Academy.

Oh! And, out of genuine curiosity, can anyone tell me how Sydney got Kelly Hayes' name? I don't remember her mentioning it before she asked what had happened to her.

All in all, Bloodlines is a good read - but Vampire Academy fans may be disappointed.

By Georgia 14 Jan 2012 4

"Bloodlines" is a spin off from the Vampire Academy Series with also an entirely new plot line but with familiar main characters from the original story. Certainly a few key plot elements from the VA series are mentioned throughout the book and are of importance, but the book can be read independently of Vampire Academy. Intrigue intermingled with humour and romance run throughout the story making it interesting and easy to follow, thus amusing and entertaining whoever decides to pick it up. Two of VA's best portrayed characters come back and not surprisingly Richelle Mead does her magic trick again and manages through their interaction to create a believable, emotional and vivacious environment. The author has a real talent for setting the story in a high school background with enough happenings that make it all too more realistic both for those who are still at school and of those who have graduated. The psychological factor is also important and well-developed throughout the book. Furthermore, be it the core plot or side stories drama is there to cause emotional turmoil and to make readers identify with the characters at hand. The author certainly doesn't give her characters a break. The end of the book will confess as much.

By Amanda 05 Oct 2011 5

Also reviewed on my blog, the Vintage Bookworm. (

First of all, I am a HUGE Vampire Academy fan. Richelle Mead is a fantastic writer. You know how a lot of series start out AMAZING, but then each book keeps getting worse and worse until finally they are too horrendous to even think about? Yeah, well that is DEFINITELY NOT Vampire Academy. Each book got better and better and I was very sad to see it end.

But, you know, the world didn't end. Richelle created another fabulous series. A spin-off series of Vampire Academy. When I first heard about Bloodlines, I was super ecstatic. But a little sad because I knew Rose wouldn't be the main character.

When I got this in the mail from BookDivas, I freaked out and did my happy dance. Seriously. Outside my apartment with my neighbor to see. And then ran into the apartment screaming for my husband to see because he knew I was DYING for Bloodlines.

Bloodlines didn't disappoint me. It took me a little bit to read it because I didn't have much time and I just really didn't want to finish it, ha! Bloodlines is a bit different than Vampire Academy. You get to see through the eyes of Sydney, an alchemist, who grew up being brainwashed that all vampires were an abomination. (Say whaat?!)

So throughout her whole life, up until she met Rose, she completely despised vampires. You still see a lot of that with how she acts around them, but you can tell she is starting to have her own opinion about certain ones.

Richelle didn't disappoint me with Bloodlines, ever since Vampire Academy I have had VERY high expectations for Richelle's writing. In Bloodlines, just like all her other books I've read, she grabs a hold of you and doesn't let go until the very last word in the book, and then leaves you thirsting for more.

I can't wait to dive into the next book and see what will happen next in the alchemists world. And ooh la la, with Adrien. Hopefully there will be some love in the next one. I'm actually rooting for a certain sexy spirit user (You know who I'm talking about.) and a young, alchemist. =D

I really like the cover. I think they found a dead on image for Sydney. =)

By Tamisan Jane Liddy 04 Oct 2011 5

this book was amazingly written. once the story got started i could notput it down and am so looking forward to the next book. the relationship and development between the characters are well done to the point that you get so involved in their lives and desires you feel as if it is you. is a good simply book that engagesthe readers and traps them in desire to know more about the characters. has enough details that you gain greater insight into characters that were in ther first series while able to help new readers understand just who the characters are