Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Series Wrap-Up : The Drake Chronicles by Alyxandra Harvey (Part 1)

*warning* - my reviews are spoiler-free, but reading the synopsises of the following books will reveal spoilers from the book before so please be wary if you haven't read these books before

Hearts at Stake
Title: Hearts at Stake (The Drake Chronicles #1)
Author: Alyxandra Harvey
Published: December 22nd 2009
Publisher: Walker Childrens
Purchase: Amazon / Barnes&Noble / Book Depository
On Solange’s sixteenth birthday, she is going to wake up dead. As if that’s not bad enough, she also has to outwit her seven overprotective older brothers, avoid the politics involved with being the only daughter born to an ancient vampire dynasty, and elude Kieran Black—agent of an anti-vampire league who is searching for his father’s killer and is intent on staking Solange and her entire family.

Luckily she has her own secret weapon—her human best friend Lucy—who is willing to defend Solange’s right to a normal life, whether she’s being smothered by her well-intentioned brothers or abducted by a power-hungry queen. Two unlikely alliances are formed in a race to save Solange’s eternal life—Lucy and Solange’s brother Nicholas, and Solange and Kieran Black—in a dual romance that is guaranteed to jump start any romance-lover’s heart. Goodreads Summary

I forgot how much fun this book was. Lucy is such a great character, witty and sharp, plus her inner monologue is hilarious. She's one of my favorite heroines to read about. She's sassy, quick-witted and hilarious. And she is a hell of a best friend to Solange, the other main character in this book. Of course, her banter and chemistry with Nicholas is wonderful as well and I loved those two together. It's always cute to see the bickering pairings who end up together.

Solange is a great girl, although I still prefer Lucy's POV. I like how despite her "princess" status, she's still a regular teenage girl, and the way she and Lucy have each others' backs is sweet. And I wholly empathized with her for the way she's swarmed by "suitors" who want her for her prophetic existence. Being a teen is work enough without throwing in a creepy vampire lord trying to court you and getting attacked at every turn. And I loved her bond with her brothers, overprotective as they may have been, and how grounded she is throughout the whole book.

Overall, entertaining and quick read. This book has action, romance, fun, sibling relationships (cute and hilarious), with an impressive world to fall into. The vampire community/hierarchy is fascinating and it's definitely a book to read to put yourself in a good mood.

My Rating: ★★★★ (4.5 stars)

Blood Feud
Title: Blood Feud (The Drake Chronicles #2)
Author: Alyxandra Harvey
Published: June 22nd 2010
Publisher: Walker Childrens
Purchase: Amazon / Barnes&Noble / Book Depository
It's been centuries since Isabeau St. Croix barely survived the French Revolution. Now she's made her way back to the living and she must face the ultimate test by confronting the evil British lord who left her for dead the day she turned into a vampire. That's if she can control her affection for Logan Drake, a vampire whose bite is as sweet as the revenge she seeks.

The clans are gathering for Helena's royal coronation as the next vampire queen, and new alliances are beginning to form now that the old rifts of Lady Natasha's reign have started to heal. But with a new common enemy, Leander Montmarte—a vicious leader who hopes to force Solange to marry him and usurp the power of the throne for himself—the clans must stand together to preserve the peace he threatens to destroy.

While I still hold Lucy and Nicholas to be my favorite pair in this series, I did really enjoy this one. It was interesting to see another aspect of the vampiric culture, the mysterious Hounds. I loved Isabeau and Logan (especially how he knew his eighteenth century etiquette which is pretty impressive), their chemistry and the plot  that was pretty fast-paced and kept things interesting.

I liked that we got a glimpse at both Lucy and Nicholas, in addition to Solange and Kieran, and while this series has a more impressive cast than most, everyone has little quirks and personality that add to the overall fun tone of this series.

My Rating: ★★★★ 

Out for Blood

Title: Out for Blood (The Drake Chronicles #3)
Author: Alyxandra Harvey
Published: December 21st 2010
Publisher: Walker Childrens
Purchase: Amazon / Barnes&Noble / Book Depository
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, she sees 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?

Besides Nicholas, Quinn has been my favorite Drake boy. He's a flirt yes, but he's fun, and you have to admit, someone who can grin while he's fighting is impressive. And Hunter is kick-ass, well deserving of her family's reputation. I loved the banter between these two characters and I had so much fun when these two had scenes together, especially when they were fighting, either each other or other people. I liked seeing the Helios-Ra Academy and the mysterious illness plaguing the students was interesting. In addition, it revealed interesting layers among the vampire hunter community, which we didn't get to see in the previous books.

Of course, we see the other couples pop in and out as well, and what I love about this series is how connected the characters are to each other, how supportive and loving they are underneath the parrying of quips and remarks.

My Rating: ★★★★

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