Tuesday, 29 March 2011

Book Review - Eighth Grade Bites

Title: Eighth Grade Bites
Author: Heather Brewer
Series: The Chronicles of Vladimir Tod
Publisher: Puffin
ISBN-13: 978-0141334066

Vladimir Tod has a secret. His mother was human, but his father was a vampire...

With no idea of the extent of his prowess and no one to teach him, thirteen-year-old Vlad struggles daily with his blood cravings and enlarged fangs. And when a strange substitute teacher begins to question him a little too closely, Vlad worries that his cover is about to be blown.

But then he realises he has a much bigger problem. He’s being hunted by a vampire killer who is closing in . . . fast!

My Review
I love the cover of this book and want one of those hoodies. That is really why I picked the book up, plus I thought the title sounded quite funny.
Vlad Tod is 13 years old, struggling with school, 2 brainless bullies, an unrequited love, homework, the loss of his parents and oh yeah, the fact that he is half vampire. His dad was a vampire and his mother was human, they were killed in a freak accident a few years before and Vld now lives with 'Aunt' Nelly.
Vlad is a great character, he is just coming to discover his powers and their extent so although he doesn't use them very much, he has some awesome tricks, but what I really liked about Vlad was his sense of humour, quick wit and thoughtful personality. He has to hide blood capsules in his food and he feeds off bags of blood as he doesn't want to hurt anyone.
His best friend Henry knows all about his secret, a Vlad bit him when they were 8 years old and have been friends ever since. Henry is great and totally accepting if not still slightly grossed out by his best friend.
'Aunt' Nelly, isn't actually his aunt but was a close family friend but she treats Vlad like a son, and they have a loving, caring bond, and she is great, she has a laugh with him but also knows when to draw the line. She is a nurse and so has access to bags of blood and sneaks them home before the expired bags are thrown out. Not at all squeamish or freaked by Vlad's condition, she makes him feel normal.
Vlad's English teacher mysteriously goes missing and a strange substitute teacher turns up, and he takes an interest in Vlad. Who is he and what does he want. With the secret threatening to break out and Vlad worried that he is being hunted, it all comes to a very exciting climax, and not everyone is who they seem to be. 
Mr Otis (the substitute) is a strange character, at times I found myself liking him, then I would think he sounded dodgy and dangerous, I couldn't decide who's side he is on.
This is actually a very short book and therefore quite a quick read, but it is exciting and action packed and sets a good stage for the rest of the series.
The writing style flows well and will leave you wanting more.

My Rating
I would give this book 8.5/10, very good book, left me wanting more. :D   

1 comment:

Susan said...

This one sounds a bit different, a cute twist on the vampire craze. Great review!