Frostbite (Review)

Book cover for "Frostbite" by Richelle Mead.Title: Frostbite

Author: Richelle Mead

Publication Year: 2008

Pages: 336

Genre: Fiction, Young Adult, Fantasy

Source: E-book version borrowed from the public library

From the cover:

Rose loves Dimitri, Dimitri might love Tasha, and Mason would die to be with Rose…

It’s winter break at St. Vladimir’s, but Rose is feeling anything but festive. A massive Strigoi attack has put the school on high alert, and now the Academy’s crawling with Guardians — including Rose’s hard-hitting mother, Janine Hathaway. And if hand-to-hand combat with her mom wasn’t bad enough, Rose’s tutor Dimitri has his eye on someone else, her friend Mason’s got a huge crush on her, and Rose keeps getting stuck in Lissa’s head while she’s making out with her boyfriend, Christian! The Strigoi are closing in, and the Academy’s not taking any risks…. This year, St. Vlad’s annual holiday ski trip is mandatory.

But the glittering winter landscape and the posh Idaho resort only create the illusion of safety. When three friends run away in an offensive move against the deadly Strigoi, Rose must join forces with Christian to rescue them. But heroism rarely comes without a price…

(This is the second book in the Vampire Academy series, after Vampire Academy.)

I really liked this book as the second in the series. Not only did it take the Moroi vs Strigoi conflict further, it brought up a lot of deeper issues. For one, Rose’s mother finally makes a real appearance, and while I didn’t like her at first, I liked the way her subplot went. I feel like the relationship between her and Rose is very real, visceral even; it fits them both and makes the story feel so much more believable. Plus, the beginnings of the discussion of allowing Moroi to use magic in a more offensive way feels like it’s setting up the rest of the series to be much more interesting.

The many romantic subplots I could maybe have gone without. I mean, I get that some of them were continuations from Vampire Academy, but I think that, at times,  Mead took it just a little bit too far. I’m happy that things seem to be going in the right direction between Rose and Dmitri, though. That’s one romantic relationship I can at least root for.

All in all, Frostbite actually felt like a better book than Vampire Academy. I get that VA was really more of a set-things-up novel, but there’s definitely more fleshing-out happening in this book. More happens, and less time is spent simply laying out the basics of the world-building. It’s definitely a good second effort on Mead’s part.


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