Sunday, December 29, 2013

Review: Voice of the Undead (Alex Van Helsing, Book 2) by Jason Henderson

Synopsis Via Inside Dust Jacket:

Now that Alex is in the know about the deadly vampires that live-—and hunt-—around his boarding school, everything is different. Putting his talents to use, Alex is training with the Polidorium to become a vampire hunter, just like his Van Helsing ancestors. Sure, he’s only fourteen, but c'’mon: This runs in his blood.

But Alex is wondering if he'’ll live long enough to succeed. His archnemesis Elle, a vampire whose youthful appearance and blond hair disguise a rage that'’s directed at him, is out to get him before a powerful leader called Ultravox arrives on the scene. Ultravox specializes in assassinations, but who is he targeting? As he dodges Elle'’s attacks, Alex is on a mission to uncover Ultravox'’s deadly plan before his friends and his school become collateral damage. There'’s no time to report back; innocent lives hang in the balance, and it’'s on Alex to act now-—or else.

Book Details:

Series: Alex Van Helsing (Book 2)
Hardcover: 304 pages
Publisher: HarperTeen (July 26, 2011)
ISBN-10: 0061951013
ISBN-13: 978-0061951015
Product Dimensions: 1.2 x 5.8 x 8.5 inches

Amazon Purchase Link:

Sapphyria's Review:

My review of Book 1, Vampire Rising, can be found here:

The gang is all back together in Book 2:  Alex, Paul, Sid, Minhi, Sangster, the rest of the Polidorium, and Alex's nemesis, Elle the vampire.

After being attacked by Elle on his way back to school, Alex accidentally burns down the school. This forces the entire Glenarvon’s Boarding School for Boys to move into an all girls' school, LaLaurie School for Girls, while the situation is assessed. This school just happens to be the one Minhi attends and is the sister school to Glenarvon. Here, we are introduced to Vienna, who has captivated Alex.

While at the school, the boys learn of a tradition where there is a talent show.  Sid is encouraged to write and read his vampire stories to the school for the competition.  While at the library seeking material/books to use, Vienna thrusts a book at Sid to use.  After a while of reading and writing from the book, the girls in the school are summoned forth into the night by an unknown entity.  Elle is the leader of the group but she is assisted by the recording from a sinister new player on the scene named Ultravox.  He has his target set on someone or something in the city but neither Alex nor the Polidorium can figure out who or what.

Will Alex and the Polidorium figure out what's going on before anyone ends of dead?

I wasn't nearly as excited about Book 2 as I was about Book 1. Voice of the Undead seemed to be written at a much slower pace than Vampire Rising. I didn't find myself engaged in the plot of the story and as such it took me quite a long time (and two library renewals) to get it read. It just didn't pull me into the story as much as I had hoped it would.

The story line itself was great. I loved the layout and the newly introduced characters. Vienna's story was sad and as it unfolded I really felt sorry for her predicament. There were some feelings between Vienna and Alex but they weren't really explored since there was a crazy madman out trying to kill/harm someone or something. Ultravox was interesting yet sort of a bland main bad guy. I found that he ended up playing a minor part in Voice of the Undead even though I think he was made out to be the main focus of the story. Vienna, Elle, Sid, and the talent show at the girls' school really overshadowed Ultravox.

I highly advise you start this series by reading book 1 first - it will help you put things into perspective and understand who Alex Van Helsing and Sangster are.  It will also explain why Elle (and the Scholomance) want Alex dead.

I will finish the trilogy at some point but it's not high on the priority list.

Review Copy Courtesy Of:  My Local Library.

Sapphyria's Rating:

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