The Chronicles of Vladimir Tod: Eighth Grade Bites by Heather Brewer (Book Review).

I think my teacher’s trying to kill me, literally. Being a teenage real-life vampire, Vladimir has a lot to deal with. From his parents’ random murder to keeping his secret to school-crushes to disappearance of his English teacher, to finding out his sub. English teacher knows his secret and thinking is trying to kill him. Vlad, from The Chronicles of Vladimir Tod by Heather Brewer, is a blood-thriving vampire who lives with his late mother’s best friend. Vlad is just trying to live a normal teenage-life without his true nature of getting in the way. Vlad has to learn how to deal with keeping his secret. Vlad is living his difficult life in this sub-themed novel. Vlad is, in lack of better words, is a hypocrite, not being what he appears to be, a human teenager when in reality he is a vampire teenager with a secret identity and a lot of anxiety.

As you can tell, Vladimir, who goes by “Vlad” is the main character of this exciting mystery. As I already mentioned, he lives with his mother’s best friend, Nelly, who works at a hospital. Which is how Vlad gets the blood he thrives. Vlad’s this “skinny, pale, unpopular boy.” (Page 14). You could call him a bit of a freak, a misfit, a reject. You could also describe him as the local “goth” boy, “black hair, black clothes, and dark humor.” (page 43). Then there is Vlad’s best friend since they were 8-years-old, Henry. Vlad feels like he pretty much can’t trust anybody except Henry. “If I could trust anyone, it was him. (Henry)” (page 17). Henry is the “most crushed-on” (page 16) guy in school. I would say, throughout the majority of this story, Vlad, Nelly, and Henry are the only protagonists of the story.

At first, the antagonist is the sub. English teacher, Mr. Otis. He had a welcoming look to him “…with a bright smile. His blue eyes…” (page 34). He came to Vlad’s school after the disappearance of the real English teacher, Mr. Craig. He then assigned a project where the students would draw a mythical creature from his top-hat, and do a report on what it’s like to be that creature. Here’s where the original conflict arises. Vlad prayed he would not get “vampire” in fear of his secret. Then when he picked his creature, it said “werewolf”. Vlad relaxed, however, once Mr. Otis saw what it said, the letters magically turned into “vampire”. At first, Vlad didn’t like Mr. Otis, who’s first and last names are “Otis”. But as the book goes on, he starts to like him, and you will see why.

Vlad, being a vampire, doesn’t sleep. But instead, he hangs out in a sealed-off tower of his school. Then, one night, he hears the convocation between Mr. Otis and another vampire by the name of “D’Ablo”. Now, this is when Vlad freaks out because not only is there another vampire, but also he realizes Mr. Otis and D’Ablo are looking for Tomas…Tomas Tod. Vlad’s father who had died a few years ago in a “house fire”. But, now, Vlad knows that ‘house fire’ was actually a murder. Vlad decides his parents were killed by other vampires because his mother was human. Therefore his dad had “committed the horrendous crime of loving a human.” (page 104).

As the story continues, Vlad watches Mr. Otis closely. Mr. Otis then “pulled up [his shirt]enough….hint[ing]of a tattoo.” (Page 110). Vlad noticed the symbol right away as the “symbols… carved into Mr. Craig’s porch.” and also as the tattoo his father talked about removing on himself. “I think Mr. Otis killed my parents.” (page 110) Vlad tried to explain to Henry. “And Mr. Craig too.” he added. Which is how he came to the decision “He’s a vampire.” (Page 111). And to top it off, Nelly invited him over for dinner. Vlad, like most kids would do anyway, tried to get out of having his teacher over. For obvious, normal reasons, and because he thinks Mr. O is trying to murder him. He tries to convince Nelly, “I think I have the flu.” (page 117) But that ultimately failed when Nelly responded with “You can’t get the flu, remember?” So they ate dinner, and when Nelly went to freshen up, Vlad freaked out and told Otis to get out of his house. Nelly came back and Otis suggested it was time to leave, after he’d freshen up. He went to the bathroom. Vlad followed him up minutes later. Vlad found Otis in his dresser, Vlad hid until he left. He then looked in the dresser to see what Otis had taken, but found nothing missing. However, he did notice Mr. Otis’s tattoo on his secret box. Otis left for the night.

Here’s where everything we thought we knew about this book, flips around… Vlad stayed home from school the next day because Nelly thought Vlad was acting a little funny. So he turned on the TV to hear a new reporter, “Local police pulled his body from the ravine….an animal may be responsible. Mr. Craig was thirty-four years old.” (Page 129). Mr. Craig was dead. The next day at school, Vlad got his paper about being a vampire for English back. He glanced at what Otis had written on the last page. “I know your secret. I know you’re a vampire.” (135). Vlad freaked out again, to make a long story short, Vlad, Otis, and Nelly were all at Nelly’s house later in the day. Vlad thinking Otis was going to kill both he and Nelly, when th e truth was revealed. “Vladimir, I’m Tomas’s half brother. Your uncle.” (140).

The story goes on with Otis telling Vlad about vampires and how they “..invented Latin, chess, and PlayStation.” (150). Later, D’Ablo came and took Nelly as hostage. Vlad, Otis, and Henry went to Elysia (vampire world) to get her back, and find themselves in quite the tussle between them and D’Ablo. I cannot say much more without giving the book’s ending away.

I personally liked the book. I look forward to reading the rest of the series. Ninth Grade Slays & Tenth Grade Bleeds (comes out in July). I would suggest that anybody who likes vampires and even possibly the Twilight series to read this book.

I think my teacher’s trying to kill  me, literally. Being a teenage real-life vampire, Vladimir has a lot to deal with. From his parents’ random murder to keeping his secret to school-crushes to disappearance of his English teacher, to finding out his sub. English teacher knows his secret and thinking is trying to kill him. Vlad, from The Chronicles of Vladimir Tod by Heather Brewer, is a blood-thriving vampire who lives with his late mother’s best friend. Vlad is just trying to live a normal teenage-life without his true nature of getting in the way. Vlad has to learn how to deal with keeping his secret. Vlad is living his difficult life in this sub-themed novel.  Vlad is, in lack of better words, is a hypocrite, not being what he appears to be, a human teenager when in reality he is a vampire teenager with a secret identity and a lot of anxiety. As you can tell, Vladimir, who goes by “Vlad” is the main character of this exciting mystery. As I already mentioned, he lives with his mother’s best friend, Nelly, who works at a hospital. Which is how Vlad gets the blood he thrives. Vlad’s this “skinny, pale, unpopular boy.” (Page 14). You could call him a bit of a freak, a misfit, a reject. You could also describe him as the local “goth” boy, “black hair, black clothes, and dark humor.” (page 43). Then there is Vlad’s best friend since they were 8-years-old, Henry. Vlad feels like he pretty much can’t trust anybody except Henry. “If I could trust anyone, it was him. (Henry)” (page 17). Henry is the “most crushed-on” (page 16) guy in school. I would say, throughout the majority of this story, Vlad, Nelly, and Henry are the only protagonists of the story. At first, the antagonist is the sub. English teacher, Mr. Otis. He had a welcoming look to him “…with a bright smile.  His blue eyes…” (page 34). He came to Vlad’s school after the disappearance of the real English teacher, Mr. Craig. He then assigned a project where the students would draw a mythical creature from his top-hat,  and do a report on what it’s like to be that creature. Here’s where the original conflict arises. Vlad prayed he would not get “vampire” in fear of his secret. Then when he picked his creature, it said “werewolf”. Vlad relaxed, however, once Mr. Otis saw what it said, the letters magically turned into “vampire”. At first, Vlad didn’t like Mr. Otis, who’s first and last names are “Otis”.  But as the book goes on, he starts to like him, and you will see why. Vlad, being a vampire, doesn’t sleep. But instead, he hangs out in a sealed-off tower of his school. Then, one night, he hears the convocation between Mr. Otis  and another vampire by the name of “D’Ablo”. Now, this is when Vlad freaks out because not only is there another vampire, but also he realizes Mr. Otis and D’Ablo are looking for Tomas…Tomas Tod. Vlad’s father who had died a few years ago in a “house fire”. But, now, Vlad knows that ‘house fire’ was actually a murder. Vlad decides his parents were killed by other vampires because his mother was human. Therefore his dad had “committed the horrendous crime of loving a human.” (page 104). As the story continues, Vlad watches Mr. Otis closely. Mr. Otis then “pulled up [his shirt]enough….hint[ing]of a tattoo.” (Page 110). Vlad noticed the symbol right away as the “symbols… carved into Mr. Craig’s porch.” and also as the tattoo his father talked about removing on himself. “I think Mr. Otis killed my parents.” (page 110) Vlad tried to explain to Henry. “And Mr. Craig too.” he added. Which is how he came to the decision “He’s a vampire.” (Page 111). And to top it off, Nelly invited him over for dinner. Vlad, like most kids would do anyway, tried to get out of having his teacher over. For obvious, normal reasons, and because he thinks Mr. O is trying to murder him. He tries to convince Nelly, “I think I have the flu.” (page 117) But that ultimately failed when Nelly responded with “You can’t get the flu, remember?” So they ate dinner, and when Nelly went to freshen up, Vlad freaked out and told Otis to get out of his house. Nelly came back and Otis suggested it was time to leave, after he’d freshen up. He went to the bathroom. Vlad followed him up minutes later. Vlad found Otis in his dresser, Vlad hid until he left. He then looked in the dresser to see what Otis had taken, but found nothing missing. However, he did notice Mr. Otis’s tattoo on his secret box. Otis left for the night. Here’s where everything we thought we knew about this book, flips around… Vlad stayed home from school the next day because Nelly thought Vlad was acting a little funny. So he turned on the TV to hear a new reporter, “Local police pulled his body from the ravine….an animal may be responsible. Mr. Craig was thirty-four years old.” (Page 129). Mr. Craig was dead. The next day at school, Vlad got his paper about being a vampire for English back. He glanced at what Otis had written on the last page. “I know your secret. I know you’re a vampire.” (135). Vlad freaked out again, to make a long story short, Vlad, Otis, and Nelly were all at Nelly’s house later in the day. Vlad thinking Otis was going to kill both he and Nelly, when th e truth was revealed. “Vladimir, I’m Tomas’s half brother. Your uncle.” (140). The story goes on with Otis telling Vlad about vampires and how they “..invented Latin, chess, and PlayStation.” (150). Later, D’Ablo came and took Nelly as hostage. Vlad, Otis, and Henry went to Elysia (vampire world) to get her back, and find themselves in quite the tussle between them and D’Ablo. I cannot say much more without giving the book’s ending away. I personally liked the book. I look forward to reading the rest of the series. Ninth Grade Slays & Tenth Grade Bleeds (comes out in July). I would suggest that anybody who likes vampires and even possibly the Twilight series to read this book.

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