Book Review: Half-Blood by Jennifer L. Armentrout
Author: Jennifer L. Armentrout
Series: Covenant, #1
Publisher: Spencer Hill Press
Date Published: October 18th, 2011
Source: Purchased (Amazon)
The Hematoi descend from the unions of gods and mortals, and the children of two Hematoi-pure-bloods-have godlike powers. Children of Hematoi and mortals-well, not so much. Half-bloods only have two options: become trained Sentinels who hunt and kill daimons or become servants in the homes of the pures.
Seventeen-year-old Alexandria would rather risk her life fighting than waste it scrubbing toilets, but she may end up slumming it anyway. There are several rules that students at the Covenant must follow. Alex has problems with them all, but especially rule #1: Relationships between pures and halfs are forbidden. Unfortunately, she’s crushing hard on the totally hot pure-blood Aiden.
But falling for Aiden isn’t her biggest problem–staying alive long enough to graduate the Covenant and become a Sentinel is. If she fails in her duty, she faces a future worse than death or slavery: being turned into a daimon, and being hunted by Aiden. And that would kind of suck.
Sarah’s Review of Half-Blood by Jennifer L. Armentrout
I added Half-Blood to my to-read list because it sounded pretty interesting. I ended up deciding to pick this one up right now because I heard a lot of talk about it being “Vampire Academy: the next generation” and all that, and I sure do love my VA. Although I could see a lot of similarities to VA and I can definitely understand why people would say that (I’ll get into more of that below), and although I did like this, it definitely didn’t impact me as much as Vampire Academy did. Perhaps it’s because the story has so many similarities? I’m not sure.
Half-Blood is about gods/goddesses and their offspring. Pure-bloods (pures) are pure-blood offspring of the gods. Whereas half-bloods are a mixture of a pure-blood and a human (or a god/goddess and a human? I couldn’t figure that one out for sure). But anyways, basically pures have all the say in this society, whereas half-bloods are kind of along for the ride. They don’t get much of a choice for their life. They can either become a Guard, a Sentential (not sure of the difference between those two to be honest), or a servant.
If you’re a VA fan then you’ll recognize the similarities between pure-bloods and moroi, as well as half-bloods and dhampirs. But the similarities between Half-Blood and Vampire Academy don’t end there. We also have rogue pure-bloods (known as daimons) that are extremely similar to strigoi. In addition the overall story is similar in a lot of ways to some of the books in the VA series.
While there is definitely a long list of similarities between the two series’, Half-Blood still stood on it’s own in my opinion. I don’t really think that Jennifer L. Armentrout went out on a mission to copy the VA story, switch things around a bit, slap gods/goddesses in place of vampires, and call it a day. I think it just happened that way. It’s still a good story and not necessarily predictable because it’s not the same exact thing as Vampire Academy or anything like that.
But anyways, moving on, this was a pretty good story. I really enjoyed diving into this world from Alex’s perspective. Alex is my kind of heroine: snarky, strong, and sexy. Yet sometimes the other “s” that we definitely don’t love in our heroines made an appearance: stupid. A couple of the choices she made in this book were just disasters waiting to happen so it was a bit annoying that she allowed herself to make these decisions. But, aside from that I actually really liked her. Comparing her to VA, she does have a lot of similarities to Rose. She’s not a carbon copy, but I could definitely see the two hanging out and getting along quite nicely.
I also really liked Adien. He is a Sentential and training Alex in order for her to catch up with the other half-bloods because of how much school she missed (I know, it sounds familiar). But he’s a sweetheart and I look forward to reading more about him in the future books. I also really liked Seth, even though I know Alex didn’t! This is going to be a really tough love triangle because I already really liked both the guys.
The plot was mostly revolved around setting up the world and what Alex’s role is in it. I would’ve liked, and hoped for, more action and running around. But hopefully that’ll come in the next books. It was interesting to see what came about at the end and I’m curious what’s going to happen in the future books because of who/what Alex is.
Overall, this was good. It wasn’t as good as I was hoping, and there are quite a few similarities to Vampire Academy — too many not to notice. But, I still think that Armentrout managed to make it her own and create something really interesting. I definitely had a hard time putting this one down, and I look forward to the next books and seeing what happens with Alex and the rest of the gang.