Junior high really stinks for thirteen-year-old Vladimir Tod. Bullies harass him, the principal is dogging him, and the girl he likes prefers his best friend. Oh, and Vlad has a secret: His mother was human, but his father was a vampire. With no idea of the extent of his powers and no one to teach him, Vlad struggles daily with his blood cravings and his enlarged fangs. 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 realizes he has a much bigger problem: He’s being hunted by a vampire killer who is closing in…fast!
I wasn’t quite sure what to think when I finished Eighth Grade Bites. I enjoyed the book, no questions about that, but it wasn’t absolutely amazing.
Vlad is a teenage vampire living with his aunt. He and his friend Henry are in grade eight, their last year of junior high, when things start going topsy-turvy, starting with a missing teacher and mystery surrounding the death of Vlad’s parents. The premise and storytelling was solid, and I really enjoyed the character of Vlad. Told through his point of view, we come to understand Vlad quite well. He’s a boy who has his world suddenly turned upside down with the revelation that there are more vampires out there somewhere.
The pace was a bit choppy – I was never quite sure where we were in time. It was winter one second, and the next it was Valentine’s day and then the end of school. I would have liked a bit more tension to the plot – the beginning starts off well, and I expected intense action and drama, but didn’t really get it.
I think my main feeling with this book was that it went too fast, with not enough substance. That being said, I was entertained and happy enough that I’m already reading the second book (which is thicker and gives me hope for more plot).