Genre: Fiction, Young Adult, Paranormal-Romance, Vampire
Page Count: 249
Pub. Date: December 22, 2009
Series: Drake Chronicles, #1
Reading Challenge: 2010 YA Challenge
My Rating: 3.5 stars (out of 5)
Amazon.com: 4 stars
Goodreads: 4.22 (Average)
Recommended For: YA readers, fans of paranormal romance and/or teen vampire books.
Book Summary: (back of the book)
Solange Drake always knew she was destined to become a vampire queen. And as the only female vampire ever born, not made, she is surrounded by danger on all sides - from vampire suitors, who want to join with her lineage to bounty hunters who are set on destroying her and her family. When she is kidnapped, it's up to her older brother Nicholas and her human best friend, Lucy, to save her. But can Lucy save herself from Nicholas, who tempts her with his every look? And what will be Solange's own fate if she surrenders her heart to the vampire hunter helping her survive the deadly intrigue at the royal court?
Hearts at Stake is another novel to be added to the ever-growing trend of teenage vampire books, but in all honesty, it's a nice addition to that humongous pile. Wit, adventure, and enjoyable writing are all terms that come to mind when I think about it. I surely had a good time while reading it. And I must say that Hearts At Stake was a nice reprieve from the violence induced novel that was Thirst by Christopher Pike. I needed the side of romance after reading that one, phew.
I loved the characters, I enjoyed the storyline, but there just wasn't enough for me to get totally invested in the novel. The book was continuously moving but I guess a part of me would have liked it to be a bit darker and lengthier, but that's just my opinion. The continuous chapter switch from both Lucy and Solange's POV kinda threw me at first, but it didn't take long for me to get in the groove. The action kept me interested in seeing where the twists led, even if the ending was slightly predictable. But, all-in-all I had a great time getting involved in the story.
The characters themselves were very enjoyable, especially Lucy. I loved her feisty attitude and the loyalty she showed towards her best friend (and vampire princess) Solange. Their interactions were always entertaining and provided many laughs throughout the story. The secondary characters, mainly being The Drake family, also provided some great dialogue and kept the pace flowing. Although, I would love to see more interaction from the other Drake family members in the upcoming installments. Fingers crossed.
Overall consensus: Honestly, there really isn't anything bad that I have to say for Hearts at Stake, only that it was more of a "filler" read for me more than anything. Too light for my kind of vampire book, but I know that there are many readers out there who'll get a kick out of it. It comes with my recommendation for any YA paranormal/para-romance readers.