Paranormal romance novels seem to be all the rage in the teenage reading world right now and, in this case, I am no exception to the norm. I mean, seriously, what isn’t awesome about paranormal romance? You get adventure, action, romance, fantasy, mystery, mythology, realistic fiction; pretty much all of the genres rolled into one! Some series of this genre that have joined my ever-growing bookshelf are Born at Midnight (Shadow Falls series) by C.C. Hunter, Vampire Academy by Richelle Mead, and City of Bones (Mortal Instruments series) by Cassandra Clare. All of these series are, as I like to refer to it, realistic fantasy.
Born at Midnight is the first novel in the Shadow Falls series. If you can look past all of the grammatical and spelling errors, (and there are A LOT – she should seriously fire her editor) this series is a gem. You’ll love the characters from the start and there definitely is a Team Edward, Team Jacob situation going on. In this case, Team Lucas, Team Derek is the ongoing debate. I consider these books to be a mix between The Lightning Thief by Rick Riordan due to the supernatural camp setting and Twilight by Stephanie Meyer because of the romance triangle and similar paranormal creatures. If you enjoyed either of these books or any of the books listed above, I am betting you will appreciate this series.
Vampires. These supernatural beasts seem to be filling the shelves and theaters everywhere. From Twilight to Marked to Vampire Academy, vampires are everywhere. Vampire Academy is the first in a series of six novels, all centering around Rose Hathaway, a Dhampir who is training to be her Moroi best friend’s bodyguard. Dhampirs are half-vampire, half-human and walk the earth for one purpose; to protect the Moroi royalty from Strigoi and other evils. Moroi are full vampires who are living. Each Moroi develops their own form of an elemental magic while in their teens, with a few exceptions. Strigoi are the evil form of vampires. Dead, inhuman, impossible to kill, and willing to kill to survive, these vamps are made when a Strigoi drinks blood from a human, Dhampir, or Moroi and the human, Dhampir, or Moroi, in turn, drinks Strigoi blood. A Moroi can also turn by choice if he or she kills a victim while drinking their blood. These books take place at St. Vladimir’s Academy, a school for training young Moroi and their Dhampir counterparts.
The Mortal Instruments series is one of my absolute favorites. I have read all of the books four times and am psyched that they are making a movie out of it (though I’m not so sure about Lily Collins as Clary. I mean, COME ON, she is supposed to have flaming read hair! Not black). The first book takes place in New York and at the Institute, an old, dilapidated church that was converted, to the oblivion of the mundanes (humans), to a Shadowhunter stomping ground. Shadowhunters, also called Nephilim, are half-human, half-angel and are, like their name hints at, demon hunters. They still bleed and die like humans, so they use a stele to draw runes on their bodies. Runes are markings, some temporary, some permanent, that are somewhat similar to tattoos and give powers based off of the rune that was drawn. This series centers around Clary Fray who was hidden from the Shadowhunter world by her mother and, until she has to get her mother back, knows nothing about supernatural creatures or demons. When her mother disappears and she is attacked by a Ravener demon, Clary is thrust into the world of the Nephilium where she finds she should have been all along. With the help of Jace Wayland, Isabella and Alec Lightwood, and Simon Lewis, she begins to study the Shadowhunter ways and searches for her mother, all while encountering what her life could have been like, as well as some romance along the way.
-Kaelyn L., 10th grade