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25 September 2009 @ 11:28 pm
Vampire Academy and Summer Reading 2009  
Well summer officially ended last Tuesday, and so I suppose it's time to make my end-of-summer-reading post. Overall I read a decent amount, and got most of the main books on my personal summer reading list read, with the exception of Jacqueline Carey's Naamah's Kiss, of which I still have about 75 pages to go, unfortunately.....I intended this to be the summer of Jacqueline Carey and Richelle Mead, my two favorite authors at the moment, because I was reading more than one book by each author this summer, but my reading list got unexpectedly hijacked by Charlaine Harris' Southern Vampire or Sookie Stackhouse series, all 9 of which I also ended up reading this summer, while I also caught up with season 1 of TB and watched all of season 2--so one could say that this past summer was the "Summer of Sookie," just as I've dubbed some past summers as "The Summer of Buffy" (when I watched Buffy seasons 1-5 for the first time) or "The Summer of Harry Potter" (when both the 7th book and the 5th movie came out within a few weeks of each other and I got into FictionAlleyPark)! ;) Or, given the vampiric nature of the majority of the books I read by Richelle Mead, my viewing of the British series "Being Human" for the first time, and all the NM trailers and news, perhaps it could just be summed up as "The Summer of Vampires", period. :p

1. Succubus Heat by Richelle Mead (Georgina Kincaid Series #4)
2. Plain Jane: A Novel of Jane Seymour by Laurien Gardner (finished)
3. Dead Until Dark by Charlaine Harris (Southern Vampire Mysteries #1)
4. Living Dead in Dallas by Charlaine Harris (SV #2)
5. Club Dead by Charlaine Harris (SV #3)
6. Dead to the World by Charlaine Harris (SV #4)
7. Dead as a Doornail by Charlaine Harris (SV #5)
8. Definitely Dead by Charlaine Harris (SV #6)
9. All Together Dead by Charlaine Harris (SV #7)
10. Santa Olivia by Jacqueline Carey
11. From Dead to Worse by Charlaine Harris (SV #8)
12. Dead and Gone by Charlaine Harris (SV #9)
13. Vampire Academy by Richelle Mead (VA #1; Spanish translation from Spain)
14. Frostbite by Richelle Mead (VA #2)
15. Shadow Kiss by Richelle Mead (VA #3)
16. Blood Promise by Richelle Mead (VA #4)
17. Naamah's Kiss by Jacqueline Carey (unfinished)
18. City of Bones by Casandra Clare (The Mortal Instruments #1, unfinished)

I'm not sure when I'll be able to finish that book or City of Bones, since I'm so busy now....but yeah, I decided to check out The Mortal Instruments series as well, checking out the first book from the library, since I have heard so much about it on BF and around fandom....I'm halfway through the first book and it's gotten better, and is certainly intriguing, although I'm not fond of the overly-descriptive and flowery writing style, and think that it is definitely "inspired" by Harry Potter (which of course we all *know* Clare has read!). I still can't get over the fact that an infamous fanfic author and BNF like her is now actually writing published original fiction...

But back to Vampire Academy: It took me a little while to get into the first book, but once I did I was hooked, and it was quite an exciting read....I love that I was actually shocked by *two* plot twists at the end, it's nice to have unpredictability like that in a novel these days, especially a YA one! And the rest of the series has gotten progressively better with each book, with the latest two books, SK and BP being particularly fantastic and epic. I actually think I liked the fourth VA book better than the fourth GK book in fact, which is pretty significant since overall I have so far enjoyed and liked the GK series better than the VA books, even though the VA series is great as well! I would highly recommend it, don't judge it by its cheesy-sounding name, it's very a very smart and interesting series, with some memorable characters, just like GK. My favorites are Adrian, Christian, and Dimitri (in that order); I did not like Rose at first, but she has now grown on me....

I really loved this book--it was one thrilling, incredible ride that left my heart racing and my mind spinning for a long time after I finished. I stayed up practically all night reading it, this book was so impossible to put down! The whole book had just an epic feel to it, very reminiscent of BTVS season 2, the way Rose had to kill a newly evil!vampiric version of the man she loved, as he plays mind games with her.....and what mind games they were! I have to say, I find evilStrigoi!Dimitri to be ten times sexier and more badass than original!Dimitri, just as with Angelus, and the fact that he still wanted Rose even after the change, that he still wanted to be with her, and was still concerned for her....gah, it was all so hot and romantic, I actually kind of wanted her to give in and become a Strigoi and join him right then and there! :p Even though I knew how wrong that would be....but hey, Dimitri was pretty persuasive! ;) In any case, the book was not what I expected, I never dreamed that we'd get to see Strigoi!Dimitri for so long....I really was wondering where the series would go after book 3, whether she'd kill Dimitri or not, and now we got to see Dimitri as a Strigoi (for a gloriously long length of time!) *and* he lives to fight another day--and end up with Rose. Because I think now that Mead has finally introduced the "happy ending escape clause" with the promise of a way to "heal" Strigoi (just as in the GK series there's the contract which can be voided and won back), it's a definite that R/D will end up together, happily.....which I'm glad for, since I do love the pairing now especially after these last two books, although if the series were to go Adrian/Rose I wouldn't be sad either, since I adore their snarky interactions and like Adrian's unrequited love for Rose as well....it's nice to be reading a series in which I don't really care either way shipping wise! :D

But yeah, this is definitely my favorite book of the series so far, followed by SK, and I can't wait until the fifth book next May--between that and book 10 of SV I think I will explode! I loved Rose's visit to Dimitri's hometown, her hunting Dimitri down in the city, meeting her father, and every moment she spend with Strigoi!Dimitri from their first meeting to the truly epic and heart-breaking bridge scene, and including the totally badass and awesome letter Dimitri sends her at the end that made me shiver and say, "f*ck yeah!" at the same time. I cannot wait until their next confrontation (though I feel like that might not be until the final book, if she needs to cure him first), and I have no idea how she is going to break out Dashkov....we shall see! In the meantime I was affected enough by this book that I have been working on a R/D fanmix for it, which I will hopefully finish and post sometime soon....I also worked on a G/S fanmix after reading Succubus Dreams and never finished that one...:(

Oh and I was also lucky enough to actually get to see Richelle Mead in person at a signing a few weeks ago on September 9!!! It was wonderful to be able to meet her in person (especially after having met my other fave author, Carey, a couple of years ago), and to get books signed by her (I got GK 1 and 3 and VA, SK and BP signed, with BP personalized). I may get around to loading pictures and more someday....
 
 
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Current Music: "Why Can't I?" by Liz Phair
 
 
 
the mcroxoring jingle janglerealdetective on September 26th, 2009 07:34 am (UTC)
LOL, OMG. I remember a long time ago, I was going to ask you if you were planning to read The Mortal Instruments series, because of the whole Cassandra Clare thing.
sherrilina: Morgana (Merlin)sherrilina on September 26th, 2009 08:24 pm (UTC)
Lol, that is funny! I guess that's one of those things you wanted to say but had forgotten to say then? :p And yeah, I wasn't keen on reading them at first because of that, but with everyone buzzing about it I figured why not--it's not like she's any worse than SMeyer is she? :p It is really, really HP-like though in many ways, like, "Oh noes the evil wizard,Shadowhunter Voldemortalentine supposedly died, but he's actually still alive and out there! And let's condescend on the lowly Mugglesndanes who aren't part of our magical, other world.....and we have a lovely dotty old mentor dude too to guide the way, and the protagonist learns she's not a Mundane after all but really a wizardShadowhunter! And there are vampires and werewolves and such in this world too, but they are lower beings looked down upon by the Shadowhunter society....and oh noes, Valentine is after the Sorcerer's StoneMortal Cup! We must find it first....

....and so on, and so forth! :p I mean, it's decent, and I'll keep reading when I have time, but the influences are kind of obvious IMO, and given how she's been "influenced" by other works in the past, like Buffy, etc....;)

Edited at 2009-09-26 08:27 pm (UTC)
memonamour23 on September 27th, 2009 10:47 am (UTC)
keep going with the mortal instruments. they are really good. i loved them. im reading vampire diaries now, need to start vampire academy but ive read some of the first one but it didnt grab me straight away. persevere?
sherrilina: Rose/Dimitri (Vampire Academy)sherrilina on October 7th, 2009 12:34 am (UTC)
Oh yes, perservere alright! They are fantastic, although it did take me a little while to get into the first one, but once you do it's one thrilling ride all the way, and Mead is a wonderful author. Seriously, so epic, do read them when you can, give them another chance! :D

Unfortunately it will be a while before I can finish TMI, I just have too much other reading to do, and I won't be able to read TMI before I have to return it to the library....but I will continue it sometime!