Out for Blood by Alyxandra Harvey
(Website, Twitter, Goodreads)Published by Bloomsbury Publishing USA on December 21st 2010
Genres: Fantasy & Magic, General, Love & Romance, Young Adult
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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?
“Good thing I’m an only child—if I’d had brothers or sisters, they might have been named Slayer or Killer. We’d sound like a heavy metal band.”
All of her life Hunter Wild has been told that vampires are the enemy—stake now, questions later. With the newly developed treaty among the infamous Helios-Ra association and the royal vampire family, The Drakes, things are starting to change. If her grandfather, a retired agent, ever found out his granddaughter, star student at the Helios-Ra Academy, took a trip to a vampire coronation, she might as well stake him herself. There’s no telling what the consequences will be if he discovers her attraction to the enemy. But she’s beginning to see the gray in the midst of a world she believed to be only black and white—not every vampire is bad. When her world turns on it axis and students start becoming suspiciously ill, Hunter has to learn to ignore her instincts and trust a vampire—Quinn Drake. It’s supposed to be her senior year, the year to decide her future as a vampire hunter, but will unexpected revelations change her outlook forever?
If you’re looking for a strong female lead, Hunter Wild should be on the top of your list. From the very first page she was completely sure of herself and the missions that she set out to accomplish. Being raised by such a strict grandfather influenced her actions and thoughts immensely. Harvey did not lose that focus, Hunter’s upbringing shining through in everything she did. The idea that “If only Grandpa could see her now” showed up constantly throughout the story. If anything, the pressure he placed on her to follow directly in his footsteps intensified how scandalous some of her choices were.
Falling for a vampire? Major faux pas.
“Centuries of her hunter ancestors rolled over in their graves.”
Second to Nicholas and Lucy, Hunter and Quinn became another one of my favorite couples in this series. I had forgotten how much I missed Quinn Drake, the narcissistic Drake brother. They both knew they weren’t right for one another, but neither of them could seem to stay away. On top of the complicated details of their relationship, Quinn had not been one to stay with one girl for longer than five minutes. Following the change from charismatic player to devoted boyfriend was exciting, though it took them both a while to admit their attraction to one another. Both had been raised to kill the other but learned to look beneath the exterior to truly understand a person—whether they be vampire or hunter.
Along with the romantic aspect, Harvey created an intoxicating story. As students started getting mysteriously and fatally sick, Hunter began to question the institution she’d been taught to trust, no matter the circumstance. Reading as a well-established organization began to crumble kept me flipping through the pages. Since this was the second time I’ve read the book, I looked for clues that I had missed the first time through. Rereading such an interesting novel proved to be just as enjoyable as picking the book up for the first time.
Out for Blood is a perfect dose of mystery, romance, and intrigue to interest just about any reader.