Hunter Wild is the youngest in a long line of elite vampire hunters, a legacy that is both a blessing and a curse at the secret Helios-Ra Academy where she excels at just about everything. Thanks to her friendship with Kieran Black, Hunter receives a special invitation to attend the coronation of Helena Drake, and for the first time, begins to see the difference between vampires that must be hunted and vampires that can become friends – or even more. When students at the academy fall victim to a mysterious illness, Hunter suspects they are under attack from within. She will need someone she can trust to help her save the future of Helios-Ra…help that shockingly comes in the form of Quinn Drake, a drop-dead gorgeous vampire. Who said senior year would be easy?
The third book in The Drake Chronicles finds us back in Violet Hill with a focus on a new relationship. Hunter Wild is seemingly perfect: smart, gorgeous, strong, and youngest in a long line of revered vampire hunters. She’s excited to begin her senior year at Helios-Ra as she finally gets to room with her best friend, Chloe, and even gets to witness a vampire coronation ceremony due to the fact that her oldest friend and brother-figure, Kieran, is dating a vampire.
But Hunter’s senior year isn’t as perfect as she’d been imagining. Chloe keeps having weird mood swings that threaten her friendship with Hunter. Hunter hears a rumor about mysterious pills that students are taking and believe these pills make explain Chloe’s weird behavior. In addition, a huge band of Hel-Blar threaten vampire hunters and vampires alike. The hunters have an alliance with certain vampire families, such as the Drakes, and so Hunter enlists the help of Quinn Drake in trying to solve all the mysteries facing Helios-Ra.
This book was so much fun to read that I didn’t want it to end. Hunter is an amazing protagonist. While she seems perfect, Chloe often complains, she is actually very real. She gets good grades because she studies and her grandfather raised her with a strong work ethic. She’s strong, but not invincible. Unlike other female heroines, she cannot take on a horde of blood-thirsty vampires by herself. She actually needs help. But that’s okay because she has a solid group of quirky, easy-to-love friends. And while Hunter may be good-looking, her flirting skills leave something to be desired.
The best thing about Out for Blood is the dialogue. It is witty and charming and so fast-paced that these characters jump out of the pages. Most notably, Quinn has the best quips and snarky, yet seductive lines. The great thing about Quinn is that his appeal doesn’t stem purely from good looks – though those certainly don’t hurt – but also from his charm and charisma. It’s easy to see why girls fall for him and also easy to understand why he falls for Hunter. Refreshingly, these two don’t fall in love. They certainly fall for each other, but love is never mentioned, nor the idea that they are soul mates and will be together forever. For once, they just plain like each other and develop a natural, believable relationship.
The other great thing about this book is that the romantic relationship is not the entire focus. The mystery of what the pills are and why students are falling ill is gripping and unpredictable. The ending really surprised me. Interwoven throughout the story are fast-paced, fun fight scenes that maintain a sense of action and solidify the world of Violet Hill. Quinn’s nickname for Hunter, “Buffy,” completely fits in this world. It also highlights the balance between the modern real-world and the paranormal aspects of the book. Alyxandra Harvey does an excellent job merging these two worlds, describing text messages alongside stakes. Out for Blood is a thrilling book, sure to satisfy followers of The Drake Chronicles itching for another glimpse into Violet Hill and the alluring Drake family.
Publication Date: December 2010
Rating [rating: 4.5]
Teaser Quote: All the Drake brothers were ridiculously gorgeous, but he had that smoldering charm down to an art. The kind you only read about in books. I’d always thought it would be annoying in real life. So not. Although the fact that he called me “Buffy” all night was less fun.
Finally out this month is the much anticipated third installment in The Drake Chronicles by Alyxandra Harvey, Out for Blood. Head on over to Facebook and become a fan of Alyxandra Harvey or the official Drake Chronicles page. You can also check out the author’s website, read her blog, or follow her on twitter. I know you’ll be dying to stay in the loop after reading Our for Blood!
Alyxandra is also set to debut a new novel, Haunting Violet, and is offering an exclusive sneak peak at the cover design and fifth chapter. Haunting Violet is a Victorian ghost story set in 1872 about a young girl named Violet Willoughby. Violet never believed in ghosts, but after being visited by the persistent ghost of a murder victim, Violet realizes she can’t keep ignoring her gift. While trying to communicate with the ghost and find its killer – someone still dangerous and on the loose – Violet struggles to keep her ability secret from her mother. The only person she can trust is her childhood friend, Colin. But Violet has grown to love Colin and accepting his help also risks their relationship.
To celebrate the release of Out for Blood, Bloomsbury Teens is offering a giveaway of one copy to a U.S. resident only. The book will come with a beautiful new bookmark and must be sent to a street address (no PO Boxes).
The Nitty Gritty:
- Simply fill out the form below with your name, email, and mailing address. We randomly draw the winners using random.org.
- Giveaway is open to US residents only.
- Ends on January 03, 2011.