Monday, March 29, 2010
The Chronicles of Vladimir Tod: Eighth Grade Bites - Heather Brewer
Title: The Chronicles of Vladimir Tod: Eighth Grade Bites (Book 1)
Author: Heather Brewer
Publisher: Speak, 2008 (Paperback)
Length: 182 pages
Genre: Young Adult; Fantasy
Started: March 24, 2010
Finished: March 28, 2010
Junior high really sucks for thirteen-year-old Vladimir Tod. Bullies harass him, the principal is dogging him, and the girl he likes prefers his best friend. Oh, and Vlad has a secret: his mother was human, but his father was a vampire. With no idea of the extent of his powers, Vlad struggles daily with his blood cravings and his enlarged fangs. When a substitute teacher begins to question him a little too closely, Vlad worries that his cover is about to be blown. But then he faces a much bigger problem: he’s being hunted by a vampire killer.
Here is a book that can finally give boys a piece of the recent vampire resurgence. Like my husband says, "what happened to when vampies made you go 'AHHHHHHHH!" instead of "Awwwwwwww!" All the vampire romance books lately have made the fad very much a girl thing, but here is a series that actually stars a male vampire that isn't being fawned over by a billion girls. The Chronicles of Vladimir Tod is a series that begins in Vlad's Grade 8 year and continues with one book per school year, ala Harry Potter (the series is up to Grade 11, so Book 4). Vlad is half human, half vampire that's trying to deal with the death of his parents (vampire dad, human mom), as well as keeping his vampire nature a secret. Helping him is his guardian, Aunt Nelly, and his best friend Harry, who helps Vlad despite being bitten by him when they were eight. Everything is as normal as can be for Vlad until his teacher goes missing and a substitute is brought in, one who starts asking questions and is on the verge of discovering Vlad's secret.
The book is a really quick read, I would have finished it in one sitting if I wasn't reading a few other books at the same time. The plot moves quite quickly with no real slow spots, in fact, if you skim or skip a paragraph or two, you'll miss key information. It's not the greatest piece of literature ever written, but it's really fun, and you can't help but love Vlad as a character, he's very witty.
If you're sick of the newfangled girl-friendly version of vampires and just want to read something where vampires are actually dangerous, or if you're looking for a quick, fun read, read this!
Thoughts on the cover:
All the covers are very similar: white background with a black silhouetted Vlad with a different coloured smiley face with fangs on his shirt, I love the continuity among them all. My favourite part has to be the smiley face with fangs, it's uber cute and just makes me giggle.