Dad of Divas' Reviews: Book Review - Alex Van Helsing: Vampire Rising

Monday, May 16, 2011

Book Review - Alex Van Helsing: Vampire Rising

About the Book
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.

About the Author

Jason Henderson is the author of Alex Van Helsing: Vampire Rising (Summer 2010) from HarperTeen, which has been named by the Texas Library Association to the 2011 Lone Star Reading List, a list of the top 20 books published in the previous year for middle grade readers. An active writer of comics and games, his most recent comic series is Marvel Comics' Shadowland: Daughters of the Shadow. His most recent game screenplay was for Activision's Singularity, for which he was nominated for a 2010 WGA Screenwriting Award. You can find him online at

My Take on the Book
For a young adult novel this book was both energetic and fun. It was a page turner from the beginning to the end. With so many novels coming out recently with vampires within it, I was wondering how this book would be different, but the author does a great job at differentiating it and takes the reader on a thrill ride! You also are drawn into a secret society that makes our own top secret operations within the U.S. seem childish.

Though this book is a young adult novel, there is a ton in it for any reader. One of the nice things that I noticed in this was that it also held a number of great themes that are ones that any parent would want their young adult to read, including things like pride, bullying, and interpersonal relationships. I was happy to see that this was only the beginning of the series, and am looking forward to reading further books in the series!

All opinions expressed in this review are my own and not influenced in any way by the company.  Any product claim, statistic, quote or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer or provider. Please refer to this site's Disclaimer  for more information. I have been compensated or given a product free of charge, but that does not impact my views or opinions.
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