Series: Alex Van Helsing, #1
Author: Jason Henderson
Reading Level and Genre(s): MG/YA Fantasy
Publication Date: May 1, 2010
Overall Rating: 4/5
Cover Rating: 3.5/5
Cover Comments: The guy on the cover's cute. Haha. He kind of looks like Logan Lerman... anyways... minus the cute guy the graveyard setting looks creepy and cool and I love the colors.
I really enjoyed this book. I was a little skeptical at first, because vampire hunters just didn't seem that interesting to me. Right in the beginning, it starts off with action. Alex is attacked twice by vampires - things he were told "don't happen." Next thing he knows, his own teacher seems to be some kind of agent for some kind of organization. And his two new friends are kidnapped by a super powerful vampire.
Loved the characters in this book. Minhi was really cool (plus she's tough), and Paul and Sid were amusing. Loved Alex. He seems like a good guy. He's funny, and I would like to be his friend. At least, I definitely don't want to be his enemy. He can kill things pretty well. Also really liked Sangster. He's just, you know, your typical literature teacher that also hunts vampires and is a secret agent for a top-secret monster hunting organization.
While the book started off fast, it kind of slowed down after that, but near the end it rushed by so fast. Sadly, I never read any of the classics mentioned in this book, so half the time I got a little confused by all the authors and books mentioned. I'm sure older readers would enjoy all the classical references in this one.
What I really liked about this book was how the vamps weren't sexy, attractive, sparkling, inhuman beings that you fell in love with. They were actually what they were originally written as. Monsters.
I also really liked the secret agent stuff. I've always been into James Bond type things. I compared this book right from the beginning to the Alex Rider series by Anthony Horowitz, another of my favorites. Percy Jackson and Ranger's Apprentice lovers will like this book, just like I did. It was a fun, adventurous read that I ate up and made me want more.
"Alex Van Helsing ran."
The Van Helsing name reborn
Fourteen-year-old Alex has no idea that he's descended from the world's most famous vampire hunter, but that changes fast when he arrives at Glenarvon Academy and confronts two vampires in his first three days. Turns out Glenarvon isn't the only school near Lake Geneva. Hidden deep underground lies an ancient university for vampires called the Scholomance. And the deadly vampire clan lord known as Icemaker? You might say he's a visiting professor.
When two of Alex's friends are kidnapped by Icemaker, it's up to Alex to infiltrate the Scholomance and get them back—alive. Assisted by the Polidorium, a top-secret vampire-hunting organization with buried ties to the Van Helsings, Alex dodges zombies, bullets, and lots—and lots—of fangs on his way to thwarting Icemaker's plans and fulfilling his family destiny.