is a young adult supernatural novel by American author Richelle Mead, the first in a six-book series of the same name and followed by Frostbite
, Shadow Kiss
, Blood Promise
, Spirit Bound
, and Last Sacrifice
. It follows the story of seventeen-year-old Rosemarie “Rose” Hathaway, a half-vampire dhampir and her Moroi (undead) best friend, Vasilisa “Lissa” Dragomir, as they are brought back to their school St. Vladimir’s Academy after being on the run for unknown reasons for two years. The story follows the goings-on at this supernatural school and explores the reasons that drove the girls away from the school, as they battle a powerful vampire seeking to harness Lissa’s powerful healing abilities for his own benefit. Vampire Academy
explores themes of friendship, duty, class, freedom, and coming of age, and was a bestseller upon its release. It received overall positive reviews and landed on the New York Times
Best Seller list in the children’s book section. It was adapted into a 2014 feature film directed by Mark Waters, although the film was not successful and future books have not been adapted.
As Vampire Academy
begins, Lissa and Rose are still on the run from St. Vladimir’s Academy, as they have been for two years. However, in Portland, they are cornered by the school’s guardians, a group of dhampirs who guard the Moroi. They are dragged back to the school in rural Montana. When they get there, the headmistress scolds them for running away and confines Rose to her room, but the girls refuse to explain why they really ran away. It is a secret between them. As they return to classes, Rose and Lissa try to stay under the radar, mostly spending time with Lissa’s unpopular cousin, Natalie. Rose, meanwhile, busies herself training with her instructor, Dimitri. Rose has a secret attraction to the older Dimitri.
Lissa and Rose are surrounded by rumors about their disappearance, led by the cruel Mia, who has a grudge against Lissa due to Lissa’s former relationship with Mia’s dead brother, Andre. That relationship ended badly, and Mia has held a grudge ever since. Mia is now dating Lissa’s ex-boyfriend and has fallen in with the crowd of royal vampires, the elites of the school. At the same time, dead animals are being left for Lissa, the handiwork of some mysterious enemy. In flashbacks, the reader learns that Lissa’s family died in a car crash when she was younger. Rose also died, but Lissa used her powerful healing abilities to bring her back from the dead, much like she did to a dead raven when learning about her powers. The girls ran away from school because they worried about what people would do when they found out how powerful Lissa’s powers were.
Mia soon scales up her war against Rose and Lissa, organizing two Moroi boys to falsely claim that Rose slept with them and let them bite her. Lissa, not willing to let their reputations be ruined, uses her power of compulsion to sway the opinion of their fellow students in their favor and even begins to persuade
the royal clique to spend time with them. However, this has a negative effect on her, causing her to become more and more depressed. It also negatively affects her friendship with Christian, the boy she has a major crush on. Christian is unpopular at school because his parents were evil vampires in the Strigoi cult and were killed after attacking humans. As Lissa becomes more popular, she and Christian have less in common.
When Rose is injured, Lissa is forced to expose her powers to heal her best friend’s broken leg. This turns out to be a mistake, as Lissa is soon kidnapped by Victor, an evil vampire who is revealed as Natalie’s father. Natalie is the one who left the dead animals for Lissa, spying on her to see if she would heal them. This confirmed her powers to Natalie, who reported it back to her father. Victor’s plan is to hold Lissa as his prisoner, forcing her to heal him constantly to put his chronic disease at bay and allow him to curry favor with the royal vampires. Rose, however, takes advantage of her psychic bond with Lissa and leads the guardians to her. She, Christian, and Dimitri storm Victor’s lair and capture him.
After Victor is arrested, Natalie kills one of the teachers at the school and transforms herself into a Strigoi vampire through a dark ritual. She attacks the prison where Victor is being held and frees him, but Dimitri is able to corner them, capture Victor, and kill Natalie in the battle. Their enemies vanquished, Rose and Lissa are able to have a fresh start at school.
Richelle Mead is an American author of young adult and supernatural fiction. She is the author of the Georgia Kincaid
, Dark Swan
, and Age of X
series for adults, and the Vampire Academy
, and The Glittering Court
series for young adults, as well as one stand-alone novel, Soundless.
She also wrote the children’s novel Doctor Who: Something Borrowed
, a spin-off of the BBC TV series, and published stories in five anthologies. She has won awards from the Teen Read Awards, the Goodreads Choice Awards, and the Romantic Times.