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Hidden away, St Vladimir's Academy is unlike other boarding schools. It's a boarding school/ training school for vampires and half-human teens. Rose and Lissa, a Dhampir guardian and a Moroi Princess, managed to escape the Academy though and have been on the run for a while. That was until some big looking guy turned up and forced them to go back.
Back at the Academy, Rose and Lissa don't feel like they fit in as well as they used to. Things have changed dramatically since they left and it seems like everyone is keeping secrets, including themselves. Caught up in romances, an ever changing social scene and a lot of intense training with a hot Russian guardian, Rose has he work cut out for her is she is going to keep Lissa safe from the most dangerous vampires around... the Strigoi.
What I thought
Being a big fan of the Vampire Academy series, I couldn't wait to see the graphic novel version of the first book. I don't usually read graphic novels but for a series I loved so much, I was willing to make an exception.
Obviously, as the graphic novel was overseen by Richelle Mead, the author of Vampire Academy, it does stay close to the original book, fitting in as much as possible without leaving out anything important. The graphic novel is only 144 pages long so it doesn't go into as much detail as the novel did and this was something that I really missed. Although you know what is happening in the story, you don't get to find out what is happening behind the scenes and especially, in main character Rose's head. This being missing made me really glad I had read the normal series first.
The illustrations were very impressive. As I said, I don't normally read graphic novels so don't have much to compare the illustrations to. Most of the pictures of the characters were spot on apart from one which I wasn't too impressed with but I can let that go. I think I just had a different picture in my own head of this specific character but I think many other people will be really pleased. The action scenes were what was most impressive for me and I think it really helped me to picture what Richelle Mead was thinking when she wrote the book.
There were a couple of scenes that I was definitely looking forward to seeing and these didn't disappoint me at all! One in particular could have been done really badly but it wasn't. The taste of this scene was great and without going over the top, it caught the passion and feeling that I got from reading it the first time around. Even though there isn't as much detail in the graphic novel, the illustrations of certain scenes made them really come to life!
If I hadn't already read the series, I would have been quite disappointed reading this but that is only because it wouldn't have gone into enough detail for my liking. The graphic novel is a great addition to anyone's Vampire Academy collection though!
*Thanks to the publisher for providing me with a review copy