Thursday, September 4, 2014

Review: Frostbite by Richelle Mead

Review: Frostbite by Richelle Mead
Release date: April 10th, 2008
Publisher: Razorbill
Series: Yes, #2 in the Vampire Academy series
Source: Purchased
Length: 327 pages
Rating: Man, I'm loving this book so much! Rose is so bad ass, and Dimitri is hot, and oooh hello Adrian, and I'm laugh---!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! PAAAAAAAAIN!!!!!


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...

My review of book one, Vampire Academy


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I admit that I have a terrible personality flaw, and it's that sometimes, I can be the worst hipster. It's been a long journey for me from the classic-reading snobby teenager I was to the adult who shrieks about ships on the internet and proudly draws fan art. Vampire Academy was an unfortunate casualty of my hipster snob years where I wasn't so into vampires or love triangles or things that were suuuper popular. (The Hunger Games OBVIOUSLY super did not count for reasons Hipster Snobby Gillian probably could not explain with logic.)

Basically? I'm an idiot, and this series rocks.

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The reason I am fast becoming obsessed with the Vampire Academy books can be summed up in two words: Rose Hathaway. I love this girl. Totally, unabashedly, and truly. I love her "punch first, ask questions later" attitude and the massive amounts of trouble this causes her. She is so flawed, so real, so kick ass, so snarky and confident and troubled and rash and dear vampire gods, she is the best. So truly the best. Her struggle in this book is all about control-- control over her feelings for her sexy guardian teacher, Dimitri, control over her rash impulses, control over her snarky rebelliousness, and control over the strange dark urges that threaten to overwhelm her sometimes. Rose's journey is a thing of beauty, and I know it's only the second book, so there's tons more to come. But Frostbite had such a heartbreaking and contained character arc. Rose learns important lessons, but with devastating consequences.

In this installment, the Strigoi (aka the bad zombie vampires) are getting more organized and are slaughtering Moroi (the elite vampires who are really kind of lazy brats, let's be real). Rose and the rest of the dhampir (kick ass half-human half-vamp race devoted to protecting those lazy ass Moroi) need to figure out how to, you know, keep everyone from getting slaughtered. Rose and Lissa (her Moroi bff to whom she is both magically bound and totally devoted to) don't spend too much time together in this book, sadly, but their bond (both magical and non-) is still the underlying thread of the series. Throw in a ski trip, some hot-headed action-seeking dhampir, three hot boys, and Moroi politics about maybe POSSIBLY getting those lazy Moroi off their victimized magical asses, and we've got a mess of a situation.

Hipster Snob Gillian totally underestimated this series. To be honest, the sentence-level prose is pretty weak at times, but the dialogue is fang-tastic (I am hilarious). The characters feel unique and distinct, and what's more, they're bloody funny (just like me haha see what I did there I am the best). I have such enormous amounts of love for Christian (seriously, can Rose and Christian team up and do all the things and just snipe at each other? Best odd couple ever). I also love Lissa and Mason and God, even Mia, who is a queen bitch most of the time but is fabulously humanized (...Moroi-ized?) in this installment.

Then there's Rose's beyond strained relationship with her aloof guardian mother, and even that made me cry. BECAUSE YEAH. THIS BOOK? With the funny quippy vampires, and the hot boys (ADRIAN FUCKING IVASHKOV, OKAY? There will be a sonnet in his honor full paragraph about him below)?

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The only sane reaction to the words "Adrian Ivashkov"

Yeah, okay, Taylor, enough Adrian-relate hip thrusts. The point is, this book hurts. HURTS. I did not know Mead was brave and evil and wonderful enough to take this book to the dark places it needed to go. I full on screeched at the ending. I cried. I CRIED. THIS BOOK MADE ME CRY. FUCK YOU, FROSTSHITE. I WAS NOT READY FOR THAT.

God, these books are addictive. I didn't mean to read this! I picked it up and then all of a sudden I was 112 pages in and then Adrian "King of my Heart" Ivashkov showed up and like hell I was going to stop. And then the ending is SUPER INTENSE and Rose is my ultimate hero in life and ugh. Fine. Just what I needed. ANOTHER SERIES TO RUIN MY LIFE. Damn you, series.

Okay, so let's talk about Adrian Ivashkov. Let's just talk about this divine morsel of Moroi magnificence, shall we? Seriously. Seriously. The moment he showed up and started tring to charm the (literal) pants off our stalwart heroine, my face just

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I actually do love Rose's chemistry with Dimitri (there is a scene up against a wall that made me keen like a humpback whale, I swear), but Adrian leapt off the page. He is so charming and funny and hot. I love Mead's characters so much, and Adrian is my second favorite of hers after Rose, who is turning out to be one of my top ever heroines.

In Vampire Academy, I had a few quibbles with the premise, but they were pretty much totally shored up in Frostbite. And while the plot is a bit simplistic and the worldbuilding still a wee bit under devoloped, it is developing, and I know more is coming. And besides, what the plot builds to? And what Rose's personal plot and journey are? Hot damn. I love this book soooo much more than Vampire Academy, and I really enjoyed VA. But this book made me cry. GOD DAMN EVIL FANGTASTIC BLOODY BOOK. Silver stake me right through the damn heart.

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*eyes Shadow Kiss* No. I shouldn't I can't. Seriously, Taylor, stop wriggling like that. It's not going to happen.

27 GIFs Of Taylor Swift Dancing Awkwardly In Her New Music Video
Can't stop won't stop reeeeeeading, it's like my heart is bleeeeeding

NO, TAYLOR. I'm stopping. I'm stopping. I have a TBR. And a life. I can't just sit inside eating chocolate and crying over fictional vampires. I CAN'T.


  1. *snort* this series is going to kill you. xD I'm not as big a fan, and I'm still muddling my way through (now on #5), but absolute agreement on Adrian. He is the highlight of the whole series for me, the only reason I'm still reading. Oh and Christian a little bit as well. Fair enough.

  2. Yessssssss. I can't believe I held off on this series for so long. Hipster Idiot Bekka is kicking herself right now for thinking vampires and romance were below her. I LOVE this series so far. I've only read to Frostbite so far, but I love knowing that more is coming and it's going to be awesome.

  3. Yep, I also was a book hipster when it came to this series. But in May, I binged them ALL!!! They are just so wonderful and you need to get through them so you can read Bloodlines and swoon even more over Adrian!!! I just finished SIlver Shadows and I'm SCREAMING inside that I have to actually wait for the next book.


    BUT ALSO THE PAINNNNNNNNNNNN. This series is the best. I binge read the entire thing & the first three of Bloodlines over three very sleepless days and it was my greatest life decision EVER BECAUSE FEELS


  5. Amazing review. You can't turn away now! Seriously- TBR list be damned, you need more Rose in your life.

  6. I'm totally in support of you reading Shadow Kiss next, but, uh, yeah. More pain. TEARRSSS EVERYWHERE

    I was a total book hipster for this series too, until my friend guilt tripped me by buying me a copy and so of course I had to read it... I ended up buying the box set a few days later xD

  7. If you think THIS book hurt, just wait until you get to the ending of Shadow Kiss. You will be in so much pain your review of it will be stuck on Caps Lock.


    I'll leave it at that.

  8. This is by far my fav book in the series! Adrian is just... I have no words <3

  9. Haha I love the gifs in this post!!! I just adore this series. Binge read the entire thing in one weekend. Lived and breathed all things dhampir and moroi. Had the worst book hangover come Monday. I basically wandered around in a daze wondering why there weren't vampires around. :) haha. Can't wait for you to read the rest!!

  10. Bahahaha, I love your description of the vampire groups. Very on point, as per usual.

    You are indeed, hilarious.

    Oh, I do remember loving the dynamic between Rose and Christian. They are totally jealous of each other, but also will do anything for Lissa so they end up in alliances but constantly sniping. It's sort of like how Bones and Spock are with Captain Kirk. Ummm, sort of.

    "Adrian-relate hip thrusts" <- someone got a little excited and left their d behind. *snorts*


    And now I am imagining you making humpback whale noises.

    This is some of your finest giffery. It's best when you talk to the gifs. Just the beeeest.

  11. So I've stayed so far away from this series you'd think it had Ebola but... I'm kind of curious now, not gonna lie. I do NOT do vampires, but I like quippy dialogue. I like endings that bring the pain. I like books that bring out this level of Gillian angst. I LIKE CUTE BOYS. Be honest, though. Is this a Shae book?

    1. Hey Shae, I know how you feel about the whole vamp thing. After Twilight, I also got fed up with vamps. But I promise you, you are GOING TO LOVE THIS SERIES. Its got everything! More importantly, its got really HOT guys. All the characters are witty, you are going to LOVE them. I had so many laugh out loud moments while reading these books. Give it a chance, you won't regret it! :)

  12. Haha, Gillian, how I adore your reviews style!
    So glad you enjoyed this series. I did too, though I admit it wasn't the all-consuming love you're showing here (took me like a year to finish all book, and I owned them all). And I'm not the biggest fan of Adrian. I know, I know, what's wrong with me!?
    Looking forward to seeing what you think of the series overall! :)


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